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Should There Be A Unified BSD Operating System?

BSD

Published on 13 November 2012 06:36 AM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in BSD
86 Comments

There's a call for unification of the four largest *BSD operating systems in a move to create a "unified BSD" with the best features in order to better compete with GNU/Linux.

It's unlikely that this call for unification will result in any action, but an independent user has written a brief statement cross-posted to several BSD mailing lists about a Unified BSD? The user asks why the BSD community can't band together and form a unified platform rather than fragmenting their resources into several different projects/forks/distributions. He wants to see the four largest BSD variants merged: FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, and DragonflyBSD.

It's very unlikely that this would ever happen, just as it's unlikely that all of the Linux distributions out there would ever converge upon one central distribution. However, it's interesting to think about and discuss.

For those not familiar with the major BSDs, DragonflyBSD was forked from FreeBSD 4.8 to implement alternative kernel design changes but these two BSDs do continue to share some resources and code. NetBSD meanwhile likes to focus upon portability and clean designs while OpenBSD is a very old fork of NetBSD that additionally prides itself upon security and cryptography abilities. The code-bases of these four BSD operating systems have wound up quite different at all levels over the many years of development. There's also many other smaller BSDs out there too.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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