On Sunday 02 September 2007 07:12:37 am Manolis Kiagias proclaimed:
> Michael Hauber wrote:
> > Hey, all...
> > I've been a user of FreeBSD and OpenBSD for quite a while now.
> > Unfortunatly, I haven't had much time to tinker lately, and that's
> > unlikely to change in the near future. Sadly, I need to get an OS that
> > my wife would be more comfortable using and that wouldn't be as
> > time-comsuming to make it more comfortable for her.
> > I downloaded the uberyl live CD and found that ubuntu seems to pick up on
> > everything I have on the laptop (as well as all the attachments), so I'm
> > downloading it now.
> > Because I've put so much time into getting this FreeBSD install where it
> > is now (and because I favor the BSDs), I'm still a bit hesitant... Has
> > anyone here had much experience with ubunu as a desktop?
> > Negatives/positives?
> > Kind of OT, I guess... I'd just rather hear it from someone in this
> > group rather than the inevitable, "Oh yeah. You won't be sorry." from
> > the ubuntu folk (salespitches == fingernails on a chalkboard :) ).
> > Thanks,
> > Mike
> > PS. Yes, I've played with PC-BSD. Unfortunately, that's still more work
> > than I have time for.
> I am working (and tinkering as you put it) with many kinds of systems:
> Fedora / Ubuntu as desktops, Debian as servers, FreeBSD both desktops
> and servers, Windows 2003 servers, XP desktops, even Vista :)
> To put it simply, every system has its strong points, ups and downs. For
> example, Windows has drivers for everything - many are crap, but they
> still exist - and a few applications you just can't replace with
> anything else. Ubuntu, the one you are considering, is based on Debian,
> which I consider excellent, especially for servers. But if you are
> coming from a FreeBSD background, Ubuntu will seem rather "restrictive"
> and "easy". It is an easy desktop for *NIX beginners, and it is now
> marketed as the Linux you will never have to touch the command line. As
> I recall, the default install will not even setup gcc, although the
> package (build-essential) is on CD. There are obviously a lot of helper
> apps, like automatic installation of codecs etc. but it is still Linux.
> If you are a power user you will need to tinker it, and there will be
> things missing you will need to install. Example: First time I tried to
> mount some NFS shares, they were taking ages. I found out it was missing
> the nfs-common package. Maybe a beginner does not care about it, but I
> consider this basic functionality and expect it to be there (or that I
> will be informed it is not, beforehand). I also need the compiler,
> kernel headers and stuff to compile kernel modules. Ubuntu seems to have
> a lot of ready made things, good for beginners but quite limiting for
> me, I have to actually rip things out to install my stuff (e.g. disable
> their versions of some restricted drivers to install mine). That being
> said, it is making an alternate, non-Windows desktop accessible to a lot
> of people, which I consider a good thing.
> Though I suggest Ubuntu to enthusiastic Linux beginners, I find it
> difficult to give an argument for anyone with an average FreeBSD
> knowledge. At home I mostly use Fedora as a Linux desktop.
> The part of your post I don't really understand, is what is really
> bothering you with your FreeBSD install. Are you missing programs /
> features you just can't live without? Is it something to do with the
> ports / packages? Installing, customizing and becoming familiar with
> your FreeBSD system does take some time, but this is followed by a very
> long effortless stable operation. Assuming a typical installation where
> users' needs don't constantly change, you can easily maintain a FreeBSD
> install with minimum hassle. And how is Ubuntu going to be any easier
> for your wife? Assuming you are administering the machine, a FreeBSD
> with a Gnome desktop will be more or less the same from the user
> standpoint to Ubuntu (or any other distro) with Gnome.
These responses have all been informative, and I appreciate them very much...
To answer your question, it's a matter of access for both me and my wife. Due
to my job, we travel quite a bit. For my wife, it's the small things
like, "My sister just sent me a link to a video on youtube and it's not
working right." For me, it's the hours I spend pouring over it, trying to
get it to work for her.
Personally, I prefer to build everything from ports because I can get the
custom builds. On this machine, that takes quite a bit of time. In one case
(when FreeBSD ports went to x.org7.2 ), it took over a week to upgrade (I
arrived at a hotel and immediately started the upgrade, and when it came time
a week later to check out, I had to stop it... That ended up creating a huge
I'd like to think I'm pretty familiar with the BSDs. I've been using both
FreeBSD and OpenBSD since around '98 (both as desktops and various kinds of
servers... I used to have 8 computers in my bedroom alone, and my hobby is
tinkering. :) )... And I preffer them a great deal over any other
unix-like OS. But literally... I just don't have the time, anymore. For a
server setup or something? Definately. Servers don't require a gui and all
the bells and whistles so it's quick, painless, and rock-solid. For a
desktop? Not if time is so limited, there is only one computer left
(laptop), and the wife is getting annoid enough to say that she had it better
in Egypt. :) I just assume have the bells-and-whistles working so her
friends don't give her a hard time about it (and something like Beryl would
definately shut them up. :) Trivial, I know but for the wife it would be a
well-deserved revenge. :) ).
In short, I want something that "just works" and doesn't have the security and
stability issues that the MS users seem to prefer. Linux seems to be the
better option for that.
I'm in the process of backup, and will be installing ubuntu shortly. Like one
of the repliers stated, I too feel somewhat guilty... But I'll be back one
of these days.