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

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  • #11
    Originally posted by kneekoo View Post

    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.
    Yes, simple HTML with simple CSS styling. Pretty sure can be made to look a little nicer with better CSS, but if keeps with the KISS ethos without JavaScript and bloated CSS frameworks, fine by me.

    Added: I wanted to add that "fine by me" includes the caveat that it doesn't also remove the option of a text install.
    Last edited by ehansin; 24 July 2021, 05:43 PM.

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    • #12
      So this new installer is about being more modern? Anyway, compared to the freebsd installer, I would pick the one from openbsd any day of the week. Straightforward, plain-text Q&A with a consistent style to get the job done.

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      • #13
        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. 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.
        I have also tried FreeBSD recently (mainly due to ZFS with TrueNAS). There are some things that I like about it, but the lack of something like systemd is really showing when it comes to server management. At least with TrueNAS, it automounts your zfs even if its not your boot partition, this basically means when you start TrueNAS then your webserver doesn't get started until your main pool gets mounted (which if you have a big pool can take minutes). Something like systemd would have easily parallelized this.

        On another note, FreeBSD really needs to find a niche where it can compete against Linux. ZFS isn't gonna cut it anymore because tbh distros get around the licensing issues without any problems, and the main technical advantage of packaging both userland and kernel at once (so the tools are completely consistent) isn't massive perk that will bring people over. In the old days FreeBSD had a far superior code quality (especially their network stack) but most of this has been already copied over so its not so much of an advantage anymore.
        Last edited by mdedetrich; 24 July 2021, 07:10 PM.

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        • #14
          Web browser based installer kinda has the smell of a huge deployment client about it, like Netflix. I mean, it's great if you ARE Netflix and deploying thousands of servers all the time from anywhere in the world... But how many FreeBSD users, even servers, actually on the scale of Netflix? Three? Four? Ten?

          I got my hopes up to see a functional text based, more modern, yet simple, installer that supported modern features like fully mirrored ZFS pools for root, secure remote installation (that NEVER includes a web server and browser! Nothing secure about either one!) and such... and get told it's some over engineered web browser based monstrosity. UGH! The usual unfortunate issue comes to mind "What can possibly go wrong..." (And it undoubtedly will!)

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          • #15
            Originally posted by pal666 View Post
            linux is the unix, nothing can kill it
            FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, and even DragonFlyBSD are real UNIX systems, OpenIndiana based systems are real UNIX systems, Solaris, AIX, HP-UX are real UNIX systems. All can trace their way back to AT&T UNIX or its BSD 4.2 derivative. Linux is a Minix clone at best. Even GNU stands for GNU is not UNIX. Linux strikes me more an more like windows nowadays with stupid containers and systemD. I feel like the only real options for a good UNIX OS that is open source is to run one of the 4 *BSDs or an open source OpenIndiana based system. #RUNBSD

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            • #16
              Originally posted by kylew77 View Post

              FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, and even DragonFlyBSD are real UNIX systems, OpenIndiana based systems are real UNIX systems, Solaris, AIX, HP-UX are real UNIX systems. All can trace their way back to AT&T UNIX or its BSD 4.2 derivative. Linux is a Minix clone at best. Even GNU stands for GNU is not UNIX. Linux strikes me more an more like windows nowadays with stupid containers and systemD. I feel like the only real options for a good UNIX OS that is open source is to run one of the 4 *BSDs or an open source OpenIndiana based system. #RUNBSD
              Meh. I've been looking towards using a non-GNU system (llvm, musl, no grub, no bash, etc.) and I've failled to like what I tried.

              FreeBSD had one of the most toxic community I've ever seen with insane dislike of Wayland and absolutely broken ports with embarassing dependencies.

              OpenBSD had no interest in wayland, a cult of Theo, UFS in 2021 but otherwise looked alright.

              I liked what DFLYBSD has done with their kernel threads and HAMMER2, but they share their ports with FreeBSD + GCC (I don't want to compile my own packages).

              The only promising stuff I've seen was from Alpine, but they still use libstdc++ instead of llvm-libc++, kernel isn't built with clang and it wasn't really great as a desktop OS when I tried it (broken video decoding and a couple of crashes) but I might check it out again.

              On a side note, HaikuOS was super interesting but has a minuscule dev force, no hardware acceleration and still bends itself to maintain compatibility with GCC 2.
              Last edited by kvuj; 24 July 2021, 10:42 PM.

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              • #17
                Originally posted by mdedetrich View Post

                I have also tried FreeBSD recently (mainly due to ZFS with TrueNAS). There are some things that I like about it, but the lack of something like systemd is really showing when it comes to server management. At least with TrueNAS, it automounts your zfs even if its not your boot partition, this basically means when you start TrueNAS then your webserver doesn't get started until your main pool gets mounted (which if you have a big pool can take minutes). Something like systemd would have easily parallelized this.

                On another note, FreeBSD really needs to find a niche where it can compete against Linux. ZFS isn't gonna cut it anymore because tbh distros get around the licensing issues without any problems, and the main technical advantage of packaging both userland and kernel at once (so the tools are completely consistent) isn't massive perk that will bring people over. In the old days FreeBSD had a far superior code quality (especially their network stack) but most of this has been already copied over so its not so much of an advantage anymore.
                I appreciate your take. I'm always taking this all in, learning as I go.

                Added: In my use case, I would probably put the OS stuff on a separate partition (it's own drive, maybe dedicated SSD) from the ZFS file storage part. Once it is booted and running, I don't care about boot times. I would think this affects things. But still open to criticisms and ideas.
                Last edited by ehansin; 25 July 2021, 01:13 AM.

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                • #18
                  Originally posted by kylew77 View Post

                  FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, and even DragonFlyBSD are real UNIX systems,
                  Learn your history, since the early 90s none of the BSDs contain any UNIX code due to the AT&T lawsuit, as Such the BSDs are just as UNIX as Linux or Windows, MS-DOS is.

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                  • #19
                    Originally posted by Rallos Zek View Post

                    Learn your history, since the early 90s none of the BSDs contain any UNIX code due to the AT&T lawsuit, as Such the BSDs are just as UNIX as Linux or Windows, MS-DOS is.
                    Well, to be technical, UNIX is a trademark owned by an industry consortium who you had to pay to get certified to call your OS UNIX, and that basicly meant meeting posix, then SUS standards. Since the trademark is practically moot today, mostly what would matter is being able to claim compliance with SUS/posix, which Linux and the *BSDs (and Windows) do where it makes sense. Of course these operating systems have been evolving much more features and capabilities beyond what it would have taken to be certified UNIX... although invariably it seems most people who use the term UNIX in threads like these are mostly talking about how userspace is configured and managed...

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                    • #20
                      Originally posted by ehansin View Post

                      I appreciate your take. I'm always taking this all in, learning as I go.

                      Added: In my use case, I would probably put the OS stuff on a separate partition (it's own drive, maybe dedicated SSD) from the ZFS file storage part. Once it is booted and running, I don't care about boot times. I would think this affects things. But still open to criticisms and ideas.
                      Yeah I would recommend this, with TrueNAS you are actually forced to put your OS onto a completely separate drive from your main storage. Personally I just use drives like Intenso 2.5inch ssd for ~20 bucks.

                      It also makes it really easy to migrate to another system if you need to (i.e. ZFS on Linux if you want).

                      Originally posted by Rallos Zek View Post

                      Learn your history, since the early 90s none of the BSDs contain any UNIX code due to the AT&T lawsuit, as Such the BSDs are just as UNIX as Linux or Windows, MS-DOS is.
                      I think he was implying that those OS's are much closer to the traditional Unix compared to Linux which I would agree with. For example Linux is a hodgepodge of a system, i.e. its only the kernel and the userland tools are shipped separately where as with traditional Unix's you get the whole package which is consistent.

                      Originally posted by kvuj View Post
                      FreeBSD had one of the most toxic community I've ever seen with insane dislike of Wayland and absolutely broken ports with embarassing dependencies.
                      I can see why they dislike Wayland, even though technically speaking its just a barebones protocol they don't have the engineering resources to implement the stack on their own. So what in essence ended up happening is that all of the Linux stuff which accompanied Wayland is forced on them (because even though Wayland is meant to be OS agnostic, pretty much all real world implementations are Linux specific) where as with X11/Xorg they didn't have to care/maintain any of this (that was the whole point of Xorg/X11, it was to abstract over the hardware/OS details as much as possible).
                      Last edited by mdedetrich; 25 July 2021, 03:54 AM.

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