FreeBSD Cert

Aryeh Friedman aryeh.friedman at
Thu May 28 01:24:15 UTC 2020

On Wed, May 27, 2020 at 8:22 PM Ralf Mardorf via freebsd-questions <
freebsd-questions at> wrote:

> My reply is intended as an explanation for the OP, not a reply
> addressed to Aryeh Friedman.

Since you purposely misread what I said your going to get a reply.

> On Wed, 27 May 2020 16:48:56 -0400, Aryeh Friedman wrote:
> >Will it?  Almost all the best IT/programmers I know started with just
> >as difficult of a challenge so if the OP wants to do something hard
> >from the get go let them.
> Many skilled coders never maintained an official port for a BSD or
> Linux distro. Lots of them try to avoid soname issues [1] by not linking
> against shared libs of BSD or Linux default installs and they try to
> workaround other pitfalls, too. Let alone that some very skilled coders
> even don't support BSD or Linux at all.

I only said "a challenging project" I never said what the project was,  You
(like almost every message of mine you have replied to) have taken it on
yourself to assume this meant contributing to an OS or it's third party
packages/ports (stop putting words in peoples mouths!).   It could be any
challenging project that has no/very few clear cut recipe like answers.
Just a randomly picked example might be to write a basic mixing board
program if your into audio.

The soname issue is only a problem if you use non-symbolic names for the
libraries (if you use symbolic you can easily change it at compile time the
way autoconf does) or even better use a language other then C/C++ to avoid
the issue completely (Python, Ruby, Java, etc. all come to mind as being
*MUCH* more portable then C/C++ [that's why I do 90+% of my work in
Java]).   Not to mention those other languages not having easily abusable
features like goto (longjmp counts), pointers, etc. (almost nothing that
lives outside of the kernel needs to be that close to the machine).  Note I
switched to Java from using C/C++ for 15 years.  So in short anyone who
runs into the soname issue outside of super low level code is doing
something wrong (a non-issue).

> One of the best, if not the best professional EQ is from fab filters.
> "We're not planning support for Linux any time soon. It's a significant
> amount of work, and testing is harder than on Windows or Mac because
> there are various major Linux distributions, all with subtle
> differences. And of course the market is very small."

Unless they are talking about the device driver layer then there is
something wrong with their architecture if they need to worry about cross
platform support.

> It's more or less the same for FreeBSD. "Maintaining" even a binary
> blob that doesn't link against shared libraries is still time
> consuming.

How would you know since you haven't done it?   The total time I have spent
on maintain the aegis port in the 10 years I have maintained is about 5 hrs.

> While unskilled but giftet people might learn better when starting
> programming a more challenging software, than when programming
> something trivial, maintaining a port that needs to fulfil
> the policy of an operating system gains not that much, than first
> learning the basics without taking care about port guidelines.

Language barrier here?!?!?!?  You can't be both unskilled and gifted!   It
is possible to be skilled but not gifted but not gifted and unskilled.

> The porters handbook and similar guidelines of other operating systems
> don't help a novice to become familiar with computers and/or a
> particular operating system. Trying to become familiar with computers
> and FreeBSD by maintaining a port is like hanging wallpaper to
> alongside learn how to lay bricks, too. You could do that, but
> especially to learn use of computers, it's way better to start
> a little bit structured. IOW first lay bricks, than hang the wallpaper.
> Starting with the wallpaper is a poorly structured strategy.

Depends on what he wants to learn.   But I likely shouldn't hold a debate
with someone on CS Education
that has no background in it (btw it is my formal degree).   BTW your
metaphor is backwards programming is the bricks and frame where is making
it look good (as a end user) is the wall paper.

Aryeh M. Friedman, Lead Developer,

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