My First BSD – Just for Giggles and Grins

Hi readers and fellow technophobes,

I must be crazy to even try this, but maybe I just want to be able to say I’ve done it, y’know, for bragging rights or something. For those who don’t know what a BSD is, it’s related to Linux. Actually they are siblings, whose daddy is UNIX. There are approximately one zillion and twelve Linux distributions and less than a dozen BSD distributions, unless you count the amazing MacOS, Apple’s own operating system, which is derived from BSD!

BSD is less popular and doesn’t yet offer all the popular bells and whistles available to most Linux users, but it does have some advantages over it’s sibling: The kernel is not built and maintained just by one guy trying to herd cats like Linux is. It also doesn’t have systemd, which has grown so huge that it’s actually bigger than the kernel, and has so much “feature creep” that it’s a little scary to a lot of users, who avoid it by running to Slackware or other Linux distros that don’t have it (or don’t use it even though it’s “there,” as in MX-Linux). What got to me is the Systemd head guy saying that eventually systemd will eventually “phone home” to report on how the computers it’s installed on are used. I’m not running away from systemd, not really afraid to use it (or I wouldn’t be running Xubuntu and recommending Linux Mint for newbies! But systemd may become more of a privacy concern as it continues to expand and intrude itself upon more and more subsystems in Linux. I’m kinda hoping that Debian will drop it, and the changes will filter downstream to Ubuntu and Mint, Linux Lite, and hundreds of other Debian-based distros downstream.  Now that Microsoft is jumping into Linux with both feet as well (basically buying GitHub and “taking over” the Linux Foundation, I might want to put some more distance between myself and Microsoft as well.  That is more bothersome to me than systemd, frankly.

So, anyway: TrueOS is a BSD that used to PC-BSD. It was aimed at the desktop at first, but grew to a server-side kind of OS. Rather than try to be all things to all users, some sort of one-size-fits-all thing like Ubuntu and it’s derivatives and offspring, it kinda-sorta forked into two: TrueOS for servers and Trident for the desktop. Trident will be what I’ll test-drive this week if I have time, and report on later. In the meantime if you’re curious, have a look for yourself here.

Cheers!

11 thoughts on “My First BSD – Just for Giggles and Grins

    1. Hat-tip to you, Orca! Actually I’m looking at GhostBSD instead of Trident, since Trident is moving to Void Linux. It’s kinda-sorta-semi “friendly,” it offers my favorite familiar desktop, etc. FreeBSD, on which GhostBSD is based, apparently thinks that Seamonkey (my favorite Internet suite for years) is “abandonware” and no longer maintains it for FreeBSD. I’ll hopefully find a way to install it anyway. I’ll install it on a spare rarely-used laptop this weekend. Wish me luck!

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      1. See, that’s what I mean: An OS you need good luck for if you wanna install it on your hardware isn’t good. By definition. Least thing I expect from any OS is a quick, untechy installation process. Followed by a comfy operation. And in that regard BSD just isn’t any good but from what I hear it’s more like the smalller, fuglier sister of Linux. A useless toy for for technocrats to play with when they are bored. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

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  1. TrueOS went from being a desktop and server choice to being a base for what other projects might want to use without reinventing the wheel (sort of what Ubuntu and other distros have done using Debian as a base). You can run vanilla TrueOS and then install a window manager or desktop environment like you’d do with Debian, or you can run something like GhostBSD which runs TrueOS as the base and includes either MATE (by default) or Xfce (using the community image). TrueOS is based on FreeBSD but uses -CURRENT in order to include the latest graphics support and uses OpenRC instead of traditional BSD rc scripts, so it has veered somewhat from vanilla FreeBSD.

    As for Trident, they are moving away from a FreeBSD-based core and it looks as though they are moving to Void Linux, so I wouldn’t recommend it unless you are a hardcore Trident and Void Linux fan. Regardless, you can always install Lumina on anything since it was designed to be portable, which kind of defeats the purpose for going the Trident route, personally.

    https://github.com/project-trident/trident-installer/commits/master/src-sh/void-install-zfs.sh

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    1. Wellllll… after reading the above comments, I’m kinda looking at GhostBSD, or TrueOS if they’re still gonna support the desktop as before. It’s BSD I want to try, not another Linux distro, which is where Trident might be going. And as a Xfce fanboy it might suit me better anyway. Looks like I won’t be getting to it today, but perhaps next weekend, God willing.

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  2. I am really interested as well. Let us know how it goes.

    I love to know of alternatives in case problems arise or are discovered with various systems. I don’t worry about it too much though because the beauty of opensource is that if a developer or developers go too far and cross the line, anyone can fork the code to fix it. I’ve seen this happen many times over the years including this year.

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  3. I’m running it Live with no issues. Pretty sparse, which is okay, and no Seamonkey in the Software Station . But omygosh is it FAST!

    I won’t have a chance to install it until the weekend (hopefully), but I’m very hopeful based on the Live Xfce experience so far.

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