Gnome 2.6 Installation

Joe Marcus Clarke marcus at
Wed Jun 9 00:23:08 GMT 2004

On Tue, 2004-06-08 at 05:25, Bill Webster wrote:
> Computer Uptime: 6:46PM  up 1 day, 19:27, 3 users,
> load averages: 0.96, 0.94, 0.92
> Computer Information: FreeBSD
> 5.1-RELEASE FreeBSD 5.1-RELEASE #0: Thu Jun  5
> 02:55:42
> GMT 2003
> root at
>  i386
> Computer Specs:
> Toshiba Satellite Pro 4600
> Pentium III 700MHz
> 128MB RAM
> 20G HDD
> I have recently made the decision to scrap dual
> booting and convert my PC into a Gnome-based FreeBSD
> desktop home computer.  After attempting all the
> different scenarios suggested by the FreeBSD-Gnome
> docs to avoid going through the long process* of
> installing  something as large as Gnome via ports, I
> had rebuilt my installation of FreeBSD approximately 6
> times. 
> Methods I had tried included pkg_add -r gnome2, which
> began downloading packages for gnome2.2 (already on my
> FreeBSD ISO), and the Gnome Tinderbox, which when
> using the 5.1-CURRENT PACKAGESITE was broken in many
> places.

There is no 5.1 support for GNOME anymore (this is stated on the FreeBSD
GNOME homepage), and the Tinderbox never supported 5.1.  However, if you
follow the instructions at, you should be able to
get the 5.2.1 or -CURRENT packages just fine.

> After my current rebuild, I had performed the cvsup
> procedure on my ports tree and began the process of
> building Gnome2.6 through ports.  * "long process" -
> refers to my computer's uptime displayed at the
> beginning of this message is the running time of the
> building of the Gnome port (so far), factoring in
> multiple error corrections & research.  At the time of
> writing, Mozilla is being built, which is a lengthy
> process in itself.
> My reasoning behind going to Gnome2.6 is:
> 1. I wanted the bleeding-edge.

GNOME 2.6 is really not "bleeding-edge."  It is the latest STABLE
release of the GNOME Desktop.  If you want true bleeding-edge, you will
have to upgrade to GNOME 2.7.

> 2. I wanted the near bleeding-edge Xscreensaver.

Again, 4.16 is merely the latest.  It is not development-quality code.

> 3. I attempted to install Gnome2.2 off the ISO as part
> of the initial FreeBSD setup, which was very broken. 
> Simple things like creating a user/group combination
> of gdm/gdm were left out of the initial installation. 
> Although, this is not an example of it being broken,
> many other things were broken.

Yes, I know.  This has since been fixed.

> I assumed that 5.1 FreeBSD would be adequately
> supported in the FreeBSD-Gnome Documentation and
> Gnome2.6 package setups.  

Nope.  You need to be running 5.2.1 or -CURRENT to get GNOME 2.6
support.  Since 5.X are early adopter releases right now, we are only
supporting the latest 5.X version.  However, both 4.9 and 4.10 are also

> The aim of this message is to ask for basic testing to
> be performed and basic needs to be met when installing
> something as complex as Gnome.

There is considerable testing put into GNOME on FreeBSD.  I dare say
that GNOME 2.6 is the most thoroughly tested release yet, and should
install flawlessly from packages (especially on 4.10-RELEASE since that
was the first version to ship with GNOME 2.6).  One of our team members
builds the desktop and all meta-ports at least once a day.  The
Tinderbox builds production-quality packages as components are updated. 
If you follow all of the instructions, you shouldn't run into any

If you do run into problems, it really helps to read our bug reporting
guide at, then report as
many details as possible.


> Please help to convert me from KDE ;)
> Naaman Campbell,
> Brisbane, Australia.
> Find local movie times and trailers on Yahoo! Movies.
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