FreeBSD and the future

Vijay Kaul vkaul at
Thu Oct 14 08:54:35 PDT 2004

On Thu, 14 Oct 2004 10:57:14 -0400, <Sigmascape1 at> wrote:

> Maybe I didn't make it clear enough. I am looking for direction in terms  
> of comparing FreeBSD and mainstream Linux distros. I am not looking to  
> debate the merits of text-based installation vs. gui-based. Where can I  
> go to find out the differences?

 From my (limited) experience, I'd say for comparing you've got three  

1) The definitive solution is to download and try out each version. (Live  
CDs might be helpful there. A couple of projects exist for FBSD, here's  
one: That seems like it might be too intesive  
for what you want, though.

2) Read the documentation. The FBSD Handbook is here: Other  
projects will also have docs available online to varying degrees of  
completeness. Also, there's a degree of translation from docs to real  
life, buyer beware.

3) The least effort involves finding online reviews. These are almost  
always biased in some way, and are almost guaranteed to be missing some of  
the information you're looking for. However, they provide pre-digested  
information, which can be useful in a hurry.

> In my business, graphics, I use Macs and Windows machines.

Your experience with Macs (OS X?) may be helpful durring a transition to  
FreeBSD (more so than any linux flavor) depending on how much command line  
work you've done.

> Linux is used for serving data and the like, but is beginning to open up  
> some possibilities to me on the client side. Among other things, I need  
> to know if I can turn someone loose on FreeBSD that is not overly  
> computer literate... strictly word procesing, email and web surfing.

It depends on your users. If you set up FBSD with a desktop environment  
like KDE, along with desktop icons for your favorite graphical word  
proccessor, mail client, and browser, you will have an environment where  
your users can function...minimally. To keep them off of command line  
entirely, you may also want to give them a file browser. Unix systems are  
prone to giving a user lots of info. You may have to do some work to make  
sure that they are kept isolated from that info. (The  
non-computer-literate are apt to "freak out" and "freeze up" when  
presented with anything new. :( )

> Also, in terms of server use, how much different would it be to set up a  
> FreeBSD server than setting up a SuSE Linux-based server.

This sounds like the first question, but now made specific. Specific is  
good. However, I don't know SuSE. Hopefully someone else does.

G'luck to ya,

> Just looking for some links and/or general data.
> "Peter Kieser" <pfak at> wrote:
>> /stand/sysinstall, IMO is easier then the fancy GUI's they have included
>> with Redhat.
>> Hasn't this discussion been broughten up time and time again?
>> --
>> Peter Kieser
>> Home: 604.338.9294 / Email: pfak at
>> // "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow." //
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: <Sigmascape1 at>
>> To: <freebsd-advocacy at>
>> Sent: Thursday, October 14, 2004 7:37 AM
>> Subject: FreeBSD and the future
>>> Hi,
>>> I am a periodic poster on this list. Over time, I am sure this
>>> question/issue has been brought up before, but I am very interested in
>>> alternatives to not only Windows but also Linux. Obviously, in terms of
>>> open source news and info, Linux gets a huge amount of press. I'd like  
>>> to
>>> see FreeBSD compared against certain Linux distros, such as SuSE and
>>> Mandrake in terms of ease-of-use, installation complexity and  
>>> application
>>> availability. I know there are tons of apps available to Linux users,  
>>> but
>>> I also know that there are many FreeBSD ports of the same apps.
>>> In the past, my biggest issue with FreeBSD was the installation  
>>> procedure.
>>> Not being a UNIX guru, I bailed on several attempts to get FreeBSD up  
>>> and
>>> running. This was 2 years ago, I'm sure a lot of the issues have been
>>> straightened out.
>>> Thanks!!!
>>> MLF
>>> Sigmascape Interactive
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