Is FreeBSD suitable for my thinkpad T61 ?

Jerry McAllister jerrymc at
Thu Jun 12 15:11:47 UTC 2008

On Thu, Jun 12, 2008 at 04:40:36PM +0800, fdu.xiaojf at wrote:

> Jerry McAllister wrote:
> >On Wed, Jun 11, 2008 at 08:50:36PM +0800, fdu.xiaojf at wrote:
> >
> >>Hi all,
> >>
> >>I brought a new ThinkPad T61 for work, the hardware is as follows:
> >>
> >>T7300(2GHz), 2GB RAM, 120GB 5400rpm HD, 15.4in 1680x1050 LCD, 128MB 
> >>nVIDIA Quadro NVS 140M, CDRW/DVDRW, Intel 802.11agn(n-disabled), 
> >>Bluetooth, Modem, 1Gb Ethernet, UltraNav, Secure chip, Intel Turbo, 9c 
> >>Li-Ion,
> >>
> >>My current working involves scientific calculation and programming. I'm 
> >>from a linux background(redhat, debian, ubuntu), but after some googling 
> >>and comparison, I found FreeBSD more stable and I want to try FreeBSD.  I 
> >>am tired of a dual-boot system, so I want to just install FreeBSD or 
> >>another linux distribution(maybe ubuntu) on my notebook.
> >>
> >>My questions are:
> >>1) Can FreeBSD work well with my hardware? The display card, CDRW/DVDRW, 
> >>wireless, Ethernet and battery managment are the most important.
> >>
> >>2) I have read the FreeBSD Handbook. According to Chapter 10: Linux 
> >>Binary Compatibility, it seems that FreeBSD lacks support of many 
> >>commercial softwares such as MATLAB, Oracle, Mathematica. Is the linux 
> >>binary compatibility stable enough for work ?
> >
> >It should run FreeBSD just fine.   Check the hardware compatibility
> >lists to check for specific peripherals.
> >
> >The Linux compatibility layer worked well.  Should be no problem.
> >
> >////jerry
> >
> >>Thanks a lot.
> Thank you guys.
> I will try to install FreeBSD on a second hard disk to have a test.
> Is FreeBSD going to enhance himself on the desktop ? It seems that FreeBSD 
> focuses mainly on server, while Linux has improved a lot in the past a few 
> years both on server and desktop. But I'm still eager to try FreeBSD on my 
> notebook :P

What FreeBSD focuses on is being an Operating System - a foundation platform
for what you want to run.   There are plenty of desktop utilities that
you can easily install to get the environment you wish.   But, FreeBSD does
not decide for you which to use.   

For example, I prefer a fairly simple desktop without a lot of extra
garbage in my way.   So, I just use Afterstep.  Some people seem to need 
the security blanket feeling of all that extra junk.

KDE and Gnome are a couple of desktops lots of people use.
Whichever you want, they are in the ports system for easy install.
Learn to use the ports system.   It makes FreeBSD very powerful as
a desktop as well as a server.



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