FreeBSD and SSD drives

Polytropon freebsd at
Sun Feb 13 13:35:56 UTC 2011

On Sun, 13 Feb 2011 07:38:01 -0500, Jerry <freebsd.user at> wrote:
> "Bloat" is a purely subjective term.

It's not.

> What one user considers bloat
> could very well be a requirement for another use. For example, while
> you might consider it bloat to have drivers for modern wireless "N"
> protocol cards, many other users have a real need for them.

This would not be bloat in any regards. Bloat refers to
software that raises hardware requirements (or also software
requirements) for NO benefit at all. For example, a program
that re-implements existing functionality, but does it in
a way that the final result becomes much slower, more
vulnerable to attacks or generally more insecure, would
be bloat.

This is a relation between what software provides and what
it requires for that in chance.

A term in relation is "overall usage speed" which contains
things like system booting time, program loading time, time
needed for interaction and so on. The corresponding equation
would be
	         software requirements
	speed = -----------------------
	           hardware resources

which shows that if you increase both parts, the result will
stay constant. This is the explaination why a 386 with 40 MHz
and GEOS (Geoworks Ensemble) does not feel slower than a
current PC with plentycore processor and tenmelonhundred
Gigahertz and tons of RAM, running "Windows" and the
MICROS~1 office suite. This assumes that people do the
same things with both example systems, as they usually
do (here: generic example of word processing).

You can easily see that working (!) hardware support would
not be bloat. In opposite, it would be very WELCOME to have
support for wireless "N" protocol cards on ANY operating
system. But there are reasons why it is NOT the case.

This means that bloat is not specific to an OS. There are
systems that traditionally emphasize the development of
bloatware for their own marketing reasons, but you can also
find bloated software on efficient and secure systems.

> I have four PC present working in my home. Three are FreeBSD machines
> and one a Win7 one. The Windows machine is essential, if for no other
> reason than there is software that is just not available on a FreeBSD
> platform. Or if it is available, it is of very poor quality. MS Office
> is a perfect example. Despite all of the rubbish the FOSS community has
> spewed for over 10 years, OpenOffice is nothing more than a poor clone
> of Office 97. The newly released "libreoffice" might be usable someday;
> however, it is now only in its infancy. There is no way it can be
> compared to a full blown MS Office 10 suite.

Which ordinary people treat like a worse typewriter. :-)

I can see that there may be fields where office suites have
their right to exist. I've been working in a multi-OS place
where Linux, BSD, Mac boxes as well as some "Windows" have
been working quite cooperatively. The MICROS~1 office programs
always caused problems, and as the systems were all given a
OpenOffice installation, things magically worked.

This, keep in mind, is just a very individual observation
that does not claim to be applicable everywhere, just as

> Until the FOSS can write
> applications that are not only compatible with, but as fully functional
> as MS Office and similar software, as well as provide drivers in a
> timely manner

Just ask for the many different file format specifications for
DOC files. You do know where you need to ask, don't you? :-)

Honestly: If you need to open outdated or defective DOC files,
there is always OpenOffice which achieves what the MICROS~1
program can't.

> (and I am still waiting for Java to be updated to the
> latest version so that it will work with the FreeBSD version of
> Firefox, or for acroread9 to actually work and play well with others,
> etc), Microsoft will always be a requirement for many end users.

Many things you named work also on the Mac OS X platform
which is also essential to many end users. Also note that
Java and Acroread are just requirements for OTHER things,
as they are tools to support other fields of use. THOSE
fields are the ones creating the initial requirements
(e. g. changing file formats, language specifications,
arbitrary interface changes, and so on).

> This is in no way a condemnation of FreeBSD, or any other open-source
> product. It is just a simple statement of fact.

Which is to be seen in relation to reality.

> The majority of users,
> despite what they may publicly proclaim, want software and hardware
> that just works.

That's true. But MANUFACTURERS do not want such hardware, as
this is NOT the way to increase geowth. Just imagine you could
sell a "just works" PC that "just works" three years. Good
idea? No. Better sell a "halfway works" PC every year along
with a support bundle. If it doesn't break by itself, do it
in software: "Feature X requires software Y, but software Y
requires hardware Z."

The NEEDS of the majority of users is NOT in the scope of
the manufacturers, or the majority would use web-bases services
entirely by the means of their TV set (as a kind of terminal
access system).  This would FULLY be sufficient for them, and
keep them away from most problems they have with "modern"
hardware and software that "just works" (which it in fact
does not).

> I had installed an older nVidia GeForce GT 220 card in
> an older PC and then discovered that there was no sound being emitted by
> the machine. Wasting valuable time, I finally discovered that I had to
> modify the "sysctl.conf" file. Crap like that should just not happen.

This is the natural result of multi-purpose hardware. As there
are more and more possibilities to use hardware XYZ, the system
has to make those CHOICES it inherits availabe to the user. Of
course, there could be a preset value, but it may happen that
this value does not fit the needs of a certain amount of users,
be it 1%, 20% or 50%. So what preset value would be good, or
would it be better to let the user decide? Or should he be
limited in what he can do with the hardware he bought just
to keep him from being able to choose?

> Things should just work.

Yes, I agree, they should. More and more often, you find that
they don't, and the more functionality an egg-laying wool-milk-sow
can provide, the harder it is for a system to provide access
to that functionality, especially when the manufacturer does
deny the existence of that OS in particular, or existing (!)
standards in general. There would be no need for thousands of
incomparable drivers if standards would be used. But as I said,
it is not intended: If the customer can just use a generic PS
printer profile for his new printer, why should he install
the bloatware DVD coming with the printer that allows the
manufacturer to spy at how many pages he prints, when, and
with which content?

> If other OS's can accomplish that feat, there
> is no reasonable reason that FreeBSD cannot attain that level of
> usability either, unless its goal is to remain nothing more than a
> hobbyist's toy.

Erm... excuse me... do I understand your statement correctly?
Honest question! You state that FreeBSD is currently nothing
more than a hobbyist's toy?

I may say - again a very individual standpoint - that I am
using FreeBSD on servers AND on my home desktop EXCLUSIVELY
since version 4 without missing ANY cool feature that all
the "Windows"-kiddies are so proud of. What they claim to
be doing today has been done by me yesterday already. :-)

It's your KNOWLEDGE and EXPERIENCE defining the value of the
system you use. It's NOT the system per se.

> For the record, I have never played "Guild Wars", although there are
> many fine games available that are not available on the FreeBSD
> platform.

Not natively, as FreeBSD doesn't exist. Didn't you know? Only
the web exists, which is the Internet, this has been invented
by MICROS~1 and consists of "Flash". :-)

Having been a PC player myself, I've played many games on
FreeBSD that were made for other systems, without many
problems. It's very true that you traditionally can't play
the most current games on FreeBSD, but you can't do so on
the outdated "Windows" versions out there, too, and I do
not mention specific hardware requirements here.

> And no, I am not going to blame the authors of said software
> for that since they have an absolute right, well maybe not according to
> the EC aka ECUSSR, but in a normal and free business climate to write
> and publish software in whatever OS language they desire. 

I do not disagree with that. If the developer of a program
or the author of a web page wishes to exclude me from
participating on his content, it's his ABSOLUTE right.

But: There is NO right to require propretary and even
financially-oriented software, protocols, mechanisms or
other stuff to participate on a free and standardized
structure of services and contents that the Internet
provides, generally spoken, like "you need a 'Windows'
to get online". "Eat or die" is an abuse of market

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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