Beginners Guide - How To Set Up A FreeBSD Desktop From Scratch

Avery Freeman

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Messages: 57

#28
Hey, pretty sweet. Congrats on the FreeBSD News link, too.

My critiques were already said by most other people - namely, why ports for new users? When I first started with FreeBSD back in 2011 I thought compiling from source was the only way to install software - had a netbook at the time which worked fine, if I wanted to wait for days on end just to compile the simplest things and risk running out of disk space (try compiling FireFox on an Atom 220 with a 16GB PATA 1.8" SSD).

Not learning how to use pkg_add (as it was back then) was probably the main reason I skipped off to Linux (and other) for the following 7 years. Had a blast trying everything under the sun (everything from Debian to Arch, Alpine to Fedora, MeeGo (remember MeeGo?) and my personal favorites, the Solaris/ishes, like SmartOS and OmniOS - which are so, so great, and also so, so dead). So but anyway, I definitely don't recommend ports for new users, easier (or anyone who wants to get shit done in a hurry).

Also, I like that you explain how to mount flash drives, but I noticed there's no mention of fuse-ntfs? A lot of them come NTFS-formatted these days now that they're several GB in size, would help interoperability with other users, etc.
 
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Trihexagonal

Trihexagonal

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Messages: 1,070

#30
Hey, pretty sweet. Congrats on the FreeBSD News link, too.

My critiques were already said by most other people - namely, why ports for new users?

*snip*

Also, I like that you explain how to mount flash drives, but I noticed there's no mention of fuse-ntfs? A lot of them come NTFS-formatted these days now that they're several GB in size, would help interoperability with other users, etc.
This started out to be my own notes to myself so I wouldn't forget how to do things while I was offline for a little over a year. At some point I decided to try and make a tutorial out of it. If there had been something like this in '98 I would have started using FreeBSD then, but it looked beyond my skillset at the time to set it up. I wrote it for people who are just I like I was back then.

PC-BSD got me to the desktop. When they first started out they had a .pbi Push Button Installer which seemed like a Windows .exe to me. I was interested in FreeBSD so I taught myself to use ports. I think I benefited from the experience overall, and though I do use pkg on my OpenBSD boxen have only done so a handful of times with FreeBSD.

The thought of using pkg instead of instructing how to use ports never even occurred to me till much later when I realized it might not be as easy for new people to use ports-mgmt/portmaster as I thought it was.

I have Flash Drives as large as 128GB and the first thing I do with them is:

Code:
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/da0 bs=2m count=1
fdisk -BI /dev/da0
newfs_msdos /dev/da0s1

Oh, I see now you and me are going to be friends. :)

And after 20 years of honing shameless self-promotion into a sorcerous skill suitably consider yours truly a Talker. ;)
 

Avery Freeman

Member

Thanks: 6
Messages: 57

#31
Oh, hm, interesting, apparently .pbi files are used for FreeNAS plugins, too

Kind of reminds me of the 'one-click-installer' files for OpenSUSE. But not as reliable, apparently, from what I'm reading (looks like lots of incompatible changes from version to version). OpenSUSE is definitely Linux with training wheels.

Kind of more like a .BAT file than an .EXE, wouldn't you think? Since it's not compiled... (just a script)

Yeah, if you rewrite the guide for pkg and it'll get like a million times easier (and faster) :)

Why would you use FAT32 on a drive as large as 128GB? Why not ZFS? ;) Or NTFS if you want near-universal compatibility? Don't you ever need to use them in other people's computers?
 
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Trihexagonal

Trihexagonal

Daemon

Thanks: 547
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#32
Yeah, if you rewrite the guide for pkg and it'll get like a million times easier (and faster) :)
I can say now with all certainty I won't be doing that. Even though it goes against all recommendations ports are what I prefer to use and take pleasure in doing so. I still think it best to give new people that command line experience and in compiling ports, but that's just my opinion. I carry over a lot of what I learned from my PC-BSD days.

I also include the option to use pkg if they so desire, more explicitly on my website than here. Here I take it they can figure it out to consult the Handbook for instruction in doing so, there I direct them to consult it, and the outline can still be followed.

You have the option of building programs from source though ports or using pre-compiled binary packages through the pkg system. Using pkg is much faster, but by using ports you can choose your own program options and it's the way I've always done it so that's what we'll use in this tutorial.
I hear people at another forum make the same argument about new users using a pre-rolled disto as opposed to one you build from the ground up. Same theory applies IMO. If you're going to learn to swim jump in the deep end, or at least edge them in that direction.

Why would you use FAT32 on a drive as large as 128GB? Why not ZFS? ;) Or NTFS if you want near-universal compatibility? Don't you ever need to use them in other people's computers?
Why not? I only use them for storage and it stores just as well on FAT32. I've gifted music to family members on USB stick and they plug them into the car stereo to listen on long trips. It's interoperable with Windows and that's all they're capable of using anyway.

I had a 500GB USB HDD that came with NFST file system and used a FAT command for larger drives on it as well.
 
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