Bad experience switching to SSD on FreeBSD 10.3

Polytropon freebsd at
Fri Jun 24 23:37:36 UTC 2016

On Fri, 24 Jun 2016 20:24:52 +0000, Manish Jain wrote:
> Upon reinstall, things were much better, but then Gnome Tweak Tool
> just does not work. This makes it impossible to get the Applications
> menu and the Window list, which I find absolutely essential. There
> is no way I can work the Activities system that Gnome ships with as
> default.

That is one of the reasons I stopped using Gnome 3, and I'm not
entirely happy with Gnome 2 either (too many things not working
as intended). It's not a big help, but always keep in mind that
Gnome is developed for Linux primarily, which is an operating
system different from FreeBSD. Many things can be ported, but
not _all_ things. My impression is that Linux-centric software
becomes less and less portable toward FreeBSD. The reason might
be that Linux is a kind of "moving target" that frequently
replaces those parts already supported with new parts, and
makes things unique to the Linux kernel or the GNU/Linux user-
land services _mandatory_ for developing application software.

> But first I have to get the Activities menu and the Window List,
> without which I just can't use Gnome. If I can't get Gnome
> to work for me, FreeBSD itself becomes useless as a desktop OS.

Did you consider using KDE, LXDE, or Xfce? Those are desktop
environments that may have better FreeBSD support than Gnome 3.
Maybe you can also try Gnome 2 or Mate, or Lumina (the desktop
environment PC-BSD comes with).

> My system is much faster, roughly 3 times compared to when I
> had the SATA HD.

There are several optimizations that you can apply when using
a SSD instead of a traditional HDD. Here is some inspiration:

I have applied another set of newfs options and "re-invented"
swap and /tmp, while not partitioning anything at all. :-)

> The LED keyboard situation is unwarranted - FreeBSD should by
> now be having support for USB LED keyboard.

This mystery has been solved. :-)

> The Gnome situation is an equal concern.

Consider using a different desktop environment. There are at
least 3 candidates which can "do the same" as Gnome 3.

> The Gnome developers have screwed up the desktop environment
> with rotten user interface choices, and the thing now needs
> to be fixed with extensions and tweak tools.

This probably is a symptom of Linux becoming more like "Windows",
I hope I'm wrong here...

> This leads directly to inavailability of FreeBSD for me for
> the time being.

As soon as all the Linuxisms inside Gnome are fully supported on
FreeBSD, they will be replaced by something different. It's not
that this kind of development is entirely new, nor is it a big
surprise. Just check our history lessons about HAL. :-)

> But the additional Gnome problem leads me to revert to XP as
> the only OS for the time being.

That's probably fine as long as you don't connect it to the
Internet. Keep in mind that "Windows XP" is 10+ years old and
went out of support more than 2 years ago.

> Hopefully things will be fixed with FreeBSD 11.0.

Gnome 3 problems surely are not related to the FreeBSD OS. I'd
say it's more of a porting problem.

> Luckily for me, I used MBR partitioning when initializing
> the SSD - against the advice from this forum.

Terminology sidenote: This is not a forum (usually used for
web forum), it's a mailing list. ;-)

But there's nothing entirely wrong with MBR partitioning, especially
when you want to use "Windows" (considered a "legacy system").
Leaving out partitioning at all (called "dedicated") is fine
was well, as long as you know what you're doing. :-)

> I hope developers at FreeBSD and Gnome become aware of my
> experience - I dearly wish things will be fixed ASAP.

It's quite possible that you can help them by providing information
both to the initial developers of Gnome 3 as well as to the person(s)
responsible for porting the software to FreeBSD (check the maintainer
of the project). Open source developers tend to listen more to their
users than those who "sell the box, then forget about the customer"
type of vendors, simply because they can rely on vendor lock-in to
keep the customer paying. On FreeBSD, there is choice. Gnome 3 does
not work for you? Stop using it. Try something different. It's not
that this step makes you lose 25 years of valuable customer data. :-)

PS. Please break your lines around column 70. This makes quoting
    and processing easier. :-)

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

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