PC-BSD 10 Anyone>?

Discussion in 'all things UNIX' started by Durad, Mar 7, 2014.

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  1. Durad

    Durad Registered Member

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    Did anybody try PC-BSD, desktop oriented BSD that uses the best filesystem in the world called ZFS...

    Version 10 is out.

    ?
     
  2. keithpeter

    keithpeter Registered Member

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    Hello Durad

    I had a play with openbsd a few weeks ago, but the deafening howl of the fans on my Thinkpad X61s and the unavailability of thinkfan or acpi/ibm put paid to that.

    I'd like to try a *BSD. Might have a look at this one on the Thinkpad X200s.

    Cheers
     
  3. keithpeter

    keithpeter Registered Member

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    Hello All

    'Beginners mind': I'm trying a BSD install after years of using Linux. Similar but different to the extent that simple things seem complex, the better to understand those coming fresh from Windows.

    I downloaded the DVD and wrote it to an 8Gb USB stick using the command suggested in the support pages[1] from my workhorse Thinkpad X61s running gNewSense

    Code:
    dd if=PCBSD10.0-RELEASE-x64-DVD-USB-latest.iso of=/dev/sdb bs=1M
    As PC-BSD uses a file system that is foreign to GNU/Linux, when you have written the image to the stick, you get an error message about not being able to mount the stick. Ignore that!

    Then I booted my test laptop, an X200s. A lot of scrolling text and then it switched into an X based installer. Selecting my 'language' as English_UK lead to a series of default settings that resulted in the installation of KDE. The basic installation took about 25 minutes, and you reboot into a 'first run' session where you set the root password and set up a user with password. On my X200s, PC-BSD could not set the video correctly, so the first thing to do on the first run reboot was to select the screen size and intel-3d drivers. The option to encrypt user files is offered prominently as a tick box in the default install. I chose not to try that on a first exploration.

    Once you have set the root and user accounts, you can log in as user. On the bottom left of the bottom panel on the log-in screen are settings for locale and keyboard layout. I had to set English UK as my locale and for the keyboard layout the first time I logged in - amazingly these settings do not appear to persist between logins. I'm investigating.

    You get a basic KDE desktop with Konqueor as the Web browser. No office apps. No Firefox. I'm wondering what was actually on that 3.7Gb image I downloaded. App Cafe allows the installation of Firefox -I went for the ESR version, and Libreoffice. There is a known issue about Libreoffice spell checking[2] - needs hunspell or aspell installed and as a newbie it is not obvious how I actually go about installing those packages as the package manager and app cafe deny all knowledge of them.

    MP3 codecs and Flashplayer come with the system, and KDE comes with JuK and Amarok music organisers. At present, I have to use the PCBSD control panel to switch sound between the headphone socket and the weedy loudspeakers on the Thinkpad. There has to be an easier way of doing things, but as a newcomer to the BSD world it is not obvious to me! Some juggling with mixers was needed, but now I can listen to mp3s and watch Youtubes [3].

    [1] http://wiki.pcbsd.org/index.php/Burning_the_Installation_Media/10.0

    [2] http://forums.pcbsd.org/showthread.php?p=113839

    [3] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eV_astp3BjM
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2014
  4. mattdocs12345

    mattdocs12345 Registered Member

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    Does it support trackpoint (not touchpad, don't care about it) on thinkpads?
     
  5. keithpeter

    keithpeter Registered Member

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    Well, my X200s only has the trackpoint, no touchpad, and it appears to work the same way as on Linux.

    I've discovered that the keyboard layout and locale setting DO persist between boots now.

    There is no suspend to RAM function visible at present, I may need to puggle around to see if that can be enabled. The default partitions only allowed 2Gb for swap so I imagine hibernate to disk isn't happening either.

    Note: this is a fun thing for me. Most BSDs want the whole hard drive, not obvious how I would dual boot on this thing...

    Under KDE, the Fn buttons for brightness, volume, music control (pause/play, fast forward/back, stop) all work as expected.
     
  6. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    No experience in real hardware, but running fine under VirtualBox albeit slower booting than most Linux distros. I chose the LXDE version, which provided a very basic system that doesn't even have a web browser pre-installed, but of course App Cafe resolves that.

    It's been a while since I last used it, and haven't really explored much, so unfortunately I can't provide more details at the moment (on vacation).
     
  7. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Best FS based on?
    Mrk
     
  8. Durad

    Durad Registered Member

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    What do you mean?
     
  9. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    The claim was it's the best filesystem ever. Why?
    Mrk
     
  10. mattdocs12345

    mattdocs12345 Registered Member

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    ehhhh. no hibernate and no sleep option? granted I don't use it that much but every now and then when I do, I miss that option.
     
  11. Durad

    Durad Registered Member

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    Because of the way it works. Snapshots, deduplication... It prevents file corruption by recording a checksum for every block of data... stores data twice or more depending of configuration...

    So basically if a file become corrupted checksum will change and ZFS will see that change, it will than deliver to the user second copy of the file that has right checksum and replace bad copy with the right one...

    Native software RAID without hardware needed...

    For example you may use RAID-Z with 3 hard drives, if one drive goes bad you simply replace it and system will keep all data for you.

    This show you that it saves your data in a case of file corruption and disk failure, two most common problems for users.

    You can also setup it to work with FreeNAS so that system stores data to second location and that it only stores changes...

    There is a video on youtube where Alan Judde talks about ZFS..

    BTRFS is an alternative filesystem..

    There is also article where creator of Ext3-4 talks about it and agrees that ext3-4 are outdated technology..
     
  12. keithpeter

    keithpeter Registered Member

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    https://wiki.freebsd.org/SuspendResume

    Looks like X200 samples can suspend to RAM and resume ok, scroll down for the table of tested laptops. Not sure if they are using a stock install here or extra packages. I imagine there is extra config. needed to enable.

    Hibernate to disk could simply be the 'guided partition' tool setting a too small swap partition. Only 2Gb swap set on a machine with 4Gb of RAM.

    So not 'install and use' yet.
     
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