Daniel Staal DStaal at usa.net
Mon Aug 29 22:06:45 UTC 2011

--As of August 28, 2011 2:09:30 PM -0700, Spencer Thompson is alleged to 
have said:

> Dear FreeBSD.org,
> I would like to order a CD with FreeBSD for an IBM Thinkpad.  What is the
> best package to get?  Will it work perfectly?  I want a package with the
> manual, man-pages and how to use FreeBSD perfectly in books.

First off: Is this a new machine, or an older one?  IBM hasn't made 
Thinkpads in at least five years: They sold the business to Lenovo.  (Who 
has kept up the quality and design.)

If it's a new machine, which machine is it?  Most of the current-generation 
Thinkpads use the integrated Sandy Bridge graphics.  This is supported in 
-CURRENT, but not in 8.2.  There is also a keyboard interaction at boot 
under 8.2, that has been fixed.

> What does Free in FreeBSD mean?  Does it mean Free as in Free of charge?
> Or is there an alternate meaning?

Free of charge, free to use, free to read the source, free to modify, free 
to redistribute.  Most definitions of free are covered.  ;)

> I'm wanting the best operating system for my laptop.  Is this the one?
> Why is it free of charge when I want to pay for it?  I don't want
> something stupid.

As others have said 'best' is an opinion, and dependent on which use you 
are putting the laptop to.  It is a very good one, for many uses.

However, given that you sound like a newcomer to the UNIX/OSS software 
world, and that *currently* your likely hardware (if you are buying a new 
Thinkpad) isn't fully supported by the standard distribution, FreeBSD may 
not be for you at this time.  If you are in that case, you'll find yourself 
working with untested and non-finalized software.

Daniel T. Staal

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