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Why FreeBSD over Linux for desktop?

ralphbsz

Daemon

Thanks: 566
Best answers: 3
Messages: 1,015

#76
My reason no.1:

FreeBSD: 66 security vulnerabilities since 12/1999 between 5-5.99 CVSS score, no vulnerability equal or above 6

- Linux: 566 vulnerabilities with CVSS score between 7-7.99 since 12/1999
And what is the number for OpenBSD? I presume much smaller.

And what would be the number for a computer that I Turned off in November 1999, and have never turned on again? It would be zero, the best possible one. The most secure computer is one that doesn't work at all.

What we need to look for is a compromise. Something that is reasonably useful, yet reasonably secure. Different people have different weights on these factors; for some people security is incredibly important, and is worth a lot of investment of money and time. And the definition of "useful" depends on the intended use: desktop, laptop, generic server, network server, and so on. For my use case and preference, FreeBSD is an excellent server operating system; I do not use either FreeBSD or Linux on the desktop/laptop.
 

Trihexagonal

Aspiring Daemon

Thanks: 418
Messages: 899

#77
Different people have different weights on these factors; for some people security is incredibly important, and is worth a lot of investment of money and time. And the definition of "useful" depends on the intended use: desktop, laptop, generic server, network server, and so on. For my use case and preference, FreeBSD is an excellent server operating system; I do not use either FreeBSD or Linux on the desktop/laptop.
Personally I like the fact FreeBSD is primarily thought of and used as a server. It gives me all the pros that come with it and I can still get a fully functional desktop (laptop) out of it that suits my needs.

Though I have learned one thing recently from my observations:

"Root does not a SysAdmin make."
 

ShelLuser

Daemon

Thanks: 1,090
Best answers: 2
Messages: 2,398

#79
Ok, this is a wee bit of a troll so don't take it too seriously ;)

FreeBSD: 66 security vulnerabilities since 12/1999 between 5-5.99 CVSS score, no vulnerability equal or above 6

- Linux: 566 vulnerabilities with CVSS score between 7-7.99 since 12/1999
See, this means that there's much more fun to be had on Linux. FreeBSD is boring: you install it and keep it updated and things just continue to work. Linux on the other hand actually gives you something to do for those times when you sit bored behind your PC wondering what to do next. Not to worry: there's always a vulnerability to be found somewhere.

I mean... given the massive amount of vulnerabilities of Windows and it's high popularity as a desktop OS (generally speaking) I think it's safe to conclude that a good desktop brings its own fair share of vulnerabilities!

... I'll go get my coffee now and wake myself up a bit ;)
 

alx82

New Member

Thanks: 4
Messages: 9

#80
9. I consider D-Bus harmful and unnecessary for desktop users.
I do agree on all of your points except this. Probably D-Bus is not mandatory for a desktop environment, but why you consider it harmful?

To me, D-Bus is not perfect, but I see no alternative to it. D-Bus benefits desktop developers by providing a common framework, type-safe messaging, event notification, etc... Of course all those mentioned features can be implemented differently, but having them in a common framework eases thing a lot for developers.

My opinion and experience is very different for shits like Policykit, systemd, and Pulseaudio, enough have been said about those.... But for D-Bus, using it as a developer (also its gio abstraction) have been always a positive experience.
 

Trihexagonal

Aspiring Daemon

Thanks: 418
Messages: 899

#81
I do agree on all of your points except this. Probably D-Bus is not mandatory for a desktop environment, but why you consider it harmful?
I build from ports using ports-mgmt/portmaster and if memory serves me D-Bus is pulled as a dependency with the graphics/gimp meta port, and I consider that a part of my desktop I use it so much.

sysutils/hal gets in there, too, but I'm not certain what program pulls it in with my build.
 

michael_hackson

Member

Thanks: 45
Messages: 73

#83
I agree that you're much more likely to encounter Linux talk in a electronics/computer shop, especially one that does custom builds for people. These shops are under stress tho. With the university's switch-over to the Windows/Apple world, the young ones get pre-implanted with a supposedly "correct" world view - one that usually doesn't include alternative operating systems. So, I see the local PC shops in decline, and it's not just Amazon that's doing them in. Regardless of cause - soon, we will have only the internet for custom built hardware parts sources here. So, if they're talking Linux in the shops, it's OK with me. Beats the alternative.
That is a very interesting thing and my generation comes with a Windows domination everywhere. Windows (and MAC OS) was my only connection with what was named "computers" for my whole childhood and youth. That was the reason why I was late into *nix and the only times I heard of *nix was when a friend of mine had "severe problems with his Linux kernel" or "We have one room of Linux-computers in the university, but nobody uses them".

Haven't tried Linux yet but one of the main reason why you should pick FreeBSD over anything is because it really indulges you to start learn about computers. I thought I knew quite a lot about computers, running Windows XP being able to help friends, but I came to realise that it was only an illusion. Windows is like frontend knowledge, if you want something deeper you should go *nix and most appreciatively FreeBSD.

>> The more you get preconfigured, the less you learn, and my feelings for Linux is that it's not as "bare" as FreeBSD for desktoping.
 

Beastie7

Well-Known Member

Thanks: 90
Messages: 293

#84
The more you get preconfigured, the less you learn, and my feelings for Linux is that it's not as "bare" as FreeBSD for desktoping.
Ironically, FreeBSD itself is preconfigured; because the base is shipped with kernel/userland defaults that are put into fruition by the developers.

In the context of systems administration or development, you can learn just as much about it with Windows; you just have more abstractions in your way that can hinder learning concepts. You don't really "learn the desktop".

Edit: spelling
 

michael_hackson

Member

Thanks: 45
Messages: 73

#85
Ironically, FreeBSD itself is preconfigured; because the base is shipped with kernel/userland defaults that are put into fruition by the developers.

In the context of systems administration or development, you can learn just as much about it with Windows; you just have more abstractions in your way that can hinder learning concepts. You don't really "learn the desktop".

Edit: spelling
Well, you are not wrong in what you are saying, though I would find it a little over the top to restrict myself too much from preconfigurations. I mean, you really really can build everything from scraps but then again you must be very dedicated.

And yes, you can do "same things" with Windows. It's just that I had never seen a computer environment able to take input without having a desktop in front of me, so installing an OS without desktop was a challenge itself. At least I feel that I "learn the desktop" when I set it up with different WMs and binaries. I now got a better understanding of drivers and how programs communicate with eachother and library dependencies. That wasn't something I managed to get with Windows, guess I was blinded by those "abstractions" (distractions).
 

tempest766

New Member


Messages: 16

#86
Actually, it's a hard sell for me. I wrote a "must have" list of features and supported hardware I need in order to be able to break free of the Linux world and I came up too short. Wish it would have been different, but without better hardware driver support, and better interoperability with existing Linux filesystems and APIs, I cannot justify it. The simpler init and and sound control (no systemd or pulseaudio) were big selling points in favor of BSD but the lack of ports for specialized software I need, and the non-existent interoperatbility with linux software raid and full disk encryption introduce too much headache to switch.
 

drhowarddrfine

Son of Beastie

Thanks: 720
Messages: 2,514

#87
I wrote a "must have" list of features and supported hardware I need in order to be able to break free of the Linux world
I'm betting there is equivalent hardware that suits your needs on FreeBSD.
without better hardware driver support
For what?
better interoperability with existing Linux filesystems and APIs
That's why I won't use Linux. It doesn't have better interoperability with existing FreeBSD filesystems and APIs. Virtually non-existent interoperability with FreeBSD software.
 

tempest766

New Member


Messages: 16

#89
I second this as a strong point. The ports tree is filled with different programs which may act as equals or even better depending on what you want.
I think you're confusing software and hardware. ports is about software applications, yet you quote a comment about compatible hardware.

A couple of points:
1) I've been hacking UNIX since it was BSD UNIX on DEC minis, and my primarydesktop (386 to original pentium) was the commercial BSDi variant before Linux was stable enough for desktop use (up to 2.4 kernel)
2) my needs are a bit above generic end-user, as I design and support some rather heady graphics and numerical processing, so lack of CUDA support, and innability to easily mount media from a slew of other systems, negates using freeBSD as my workstation host OS.
3) BSD has always been kind of troubling with regard to hardware support. It's impractical and often too costly to go looking for specifically supported hardware in this made in china, custom USB driver class, short production run, buy at BestBuy or through newegg economy.

I strongly hate what Linux has become, both in terms of technical and pragmatic immaturity of the developers, and in terms of the religious zealotry. With the introduction of a super-init (systemd) and the heavy dependence upon initramfs, it is totally unsuitable for embedded work. Hell, we've now got managers that thing the raspberry pi is a serious embedded tool, and that they should be able to hire highschool students to design mission critical embedded systems based on the pi and raspian. Cough! Choke!

I simply stated originally that for as much as I'd like to rely more upon freeBSD, it also suffers from problems that will keep it from being more readily accepted and used...at least by me. Arguments to the contrary are in my most humble opinion, pure religious dogma.

I can certainly find server uses for freeBSD, but to sell it as a mainstream workstation environment seems a bit disingenuous.

Let the flaming begin!
 

Zirias

Well-Known Member

Thanks: 118
Messages: 350

#90
I simply stated originally that for as much as I'd like to rely more upon freeBSD, it also suffers from problems that will keep it from being more readily accepted and used...at least by me. Arguments to the contrary are in my most humble opinion, pure religious dogma.
This is an interesting claim (emphasis mine). Your argument against FreeBSD as a desktop driver is your special personal requirements, which is fine, but explicitly doesn't make it a universally valid argument. Still, you disqualify any universal argument for using FreeBSD on a desktop as "religious dogma". Does this really make sense?
Let the flaming begin!
No thanks ;)
 
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