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FreeBSD Working On A New Installer, Updates To Their Linux Compatibility Layer

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  • FreeBSD Working On A New Installer, Updates To Their Linux Compatibility Layer

    Phoronix: FreeBSD Working On A New Installer, Updates To Their Linux Compatibility Layer

    The FreeBSD project just published their Q2-2021 report concerning all of their different development activities from April through June...

    https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pa...Q2-2021-Report

  • #2
    To my own surprise I find the idea of a web-based installer not that bad... what I fear is the "modern user interface" thing. If the installer requires the latest version of framework X and depends on browser Y with Z enabled it is a really, really BAD idea. If this thing however can try to be as simple as possible - e.g. pure html with a couple of necessary tricks here and there it may actually be a good idea.

    Personally I have always preferred text based installers. Simple and clean without any fuzz!

    http://www.dirtcellar.net

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    • #3
      Originally posted by waxhead View Post
      To my own surprise I find the idea of a web-based installer not that bad... what I fear is the "modern user interface" thing. If the installer requires the latest version of framework X and depends on browser Y with Z enabled it is a really, really BAD idea. If this thing however can try to be as simple as possible - e.g. pure html with a couple of necessary tricks here and there it may actually be a good idea.

      Personally I have always preferred text based installers. Simple and clean without any fuzz!
      My thoughts exactly. It's here if you haven't checked it out already.

      I both laugh and cringe anytime I read the word "modern" in regards to computing. It'll only be "modern" for the first year or so until someone else comes out with the next "modern" design or idea and your "modern" becomes "legacy thing #45328".

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      • #4
        There is "rough proof-of-concept" work on a new FreeBSD installer. The goal is to ultimately succeed the current bsdinstall. This new experimental installer is web-based with the interface running from a web browser either locally on the machine seeing the FreeBSD installation or can be opened up on a remote system.
        I think the web installer could be a nice addition. However there is no chance in hell a web based only installer can replace a traditional text based installer (or even rs232 for that matter).
        The fact that Xorg (and a web browser) are not in base would make local installations infeasible.

        Didn't Solaris 8 have a "web start" (https://docs.oracle.com/cd/E19455-01...j/index.html)?
        Amazing how things go in circles with a complete lack of true innovation and then calling it "modern" again
        Last edited by kpedersen; 24 July 2021, 09:56 AM.

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        • #5
          I have been playing more with FreeBSD lately (admittedly not a lot yet) because I can see it's value as a ZFS based file server, even more so now that the combined Linux + FreeBSD OpenZFS has merged as a common codebase, and that is now default in FreeBSD 13. I took a look at the link above and the screenshot does look simple (in a good way.) For a server I wouldn't want to install all the dependencies to do this locally on that machine, but if the installer gave me an IP address early on and I could remotely accesses that from another machine, might be nice. That said, I would hope they keep the text installer as well, both options fronting the same "back end" installation process.

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          • #6
            I really like FreeBSD. Probably because I started my career on Unix back in the 1980's. But I have to keep a Linux machine around, because the linux emulation layer is a sad joke. Windows subsystem for Linux runs linux programs far better than FreeBSD can. This leaves the ecosystem decimated, with more and more ports breaking almost daily. i really hope they fix it and get appimage working. If not, I have serious doubts that Unix will survive the next decade.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by waxhead View Post
              To my own surprise I find the idea of a web-based installer not that bad... what I fear is the "modern user interface" thing. If the installer requires the latest version of framework X and depends on browser Y with Z enabled it is a really, really BAD idea. If this thing however can try to be as simple as possible - e.g. pure html with a couple of necessary tricks here and there it may actually be a good idea.

              Personally I have always preferred text based installers. Simple and clean without any fuzz!
              Well, this is how it looked on 16-07-2021. But I looked on the GitHub page and there's no framework or 3rd party stuff. And while the "Problems and future plans" section on GitHub doesn't mention anything about the design, I would assume that it will improve to actually look reasonable. As it is, it wasn't modern even 20 years ago. :P But if they want to run it even in a text browser, it's also safe to assume they won't go overboard with flashy CSS and JS, but stick to pure HTML and minimal CSS.
              Last edited by kneekoo; 24 July 2021, 01:21 PM.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by darkoverlordofdata View Post
                I have to keep a Linux machine around, because the linux emulation layer is a sad joke.
                if freebsd itself wasn't a sad joke, it wouldn't need linux emulation layer
                Originally posted by darkoverlordofdata View Post
                Windows subsystem for Linux runs linux programs far better than FreeBSD can
                wsl just runs linux in vm
                Originally posted by darkoverlordofdata View Post
                I have serious doubts that Unix will survive the next decade.
                linux is the unix, nothing can kill it

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ehansin View Post
                  I have been playing more with FreeBSD lately (admittedly not a lot yet) because I can see it's value as a ZFS based file server, even more so now that the combined Linux + FreeBSD OpenZFS has merged as a common codebase, and that is now default in FreeBSD 13.
                  even ignoring strange desire to use some github fork of obsolete by design filesystem on a file server, why would one need freebsd to run linux zfs?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by pal666 View Post
                    even ignoring strange desire to use some github fork of obsolete by design filesystem on a file server, why would one need freebsd to run linux zfs?
                    You can run ZFS on Linux just fine and so can I. I can also get a nice minimal server install with FreeBSD that does nothing more than serve up ZFS storage and with whatever networking protocols I need, with AD integration just fine out of the box. You do you, no one is stopping you.

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