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Forget it. I'm switching to BSD


If it is a Gsync model you may find you cannot use the Intel graphics as Gsync Alienware laptops connect the screen directly to the GPU and don’t use Optimus technology.

Bargain @ $500 though :slight_smile:


Yeah. Definitely a bargain… If it weren’t a scam :wink:

But back on track. My laptop is still sitting here without a GUI but with everything minus NTP working. Screen still reported as not found by X even with the proper entries.

Haven’t given up but this looks bleak.


Can you still run GUI applications when you run them from the terminal?

Like if you do leafpad will it open?


Unfortunately not lol. I mean, if the program has an optional terminal interface then it will but otherwise it won’t.


Thanks for posting your adventures with OpenBSD . Personly i use it on a few random devices but never botherd to use it on a main laptop/machine. You may want to give FreeBSD a shot for the reasions given above.


I’m considering it at this point. Might give it a shot.


I never knew that.



Sorry for the lack updates… It’s been a crazy week.

Last night, the pump on my cooler in my desktop failed, and I noticed a clicking sound, followed it, and it turns out my PSU is actually dying too after only 2 months of use (I bought a new one)–with no warranty whatsoever. I was also going to bump up the RAM inside and get another SSD… But whatever lol.

So in short, I’ve got to buy another PSU, a new cooler, an SSD, and (if budget allows) more RAM. :confused:

While my desktop isn’t running, I’m left with one computer–that right now only half works at the moment–my Asus K501U. So, in the spirit of speeding things up, I have taken suggestions and I have installed FreeBSD instead. I’m hoping for more success, however I don’t know how things will come out. If I can’t get things rolling by the weekend, Linux (OpenSuSE) will temporarily be installed until my parts and a new laptop I have ordered come in.

Now, here’s my initial impressions of OpenBSD:

  1. The installer is easier and accomplishes the same thing with more configurations available.
  2. True ZFS support is available. This is a big one. Linux only offers OpenZFS, and OpenBSD pushes UFS so it’s kind of nice. I like it due to the data redundancy. But personally, I still like BTRFS paired with XFS. I have yet to find a better configuration than what SuSE provides by default, but ZFS will suffice–especially where scalability is concerned.
  3. Network drivers were equally as complicated to setup. No change there. Actually, I think it was easier on OpenBSD.
  4. It looks like pkg might be easier to use(?) to install applications
  5. Installing a desktop environment was equally as easy, BUT Plasma is an option fortunately. For some reason it is labeled as KDE5 instead though.
  6. Xorg is proving to still be a problem, but I’m hoping with proper binary drivers it could be easier.
  7. Text in the terminal is easier to read, but I’ve still got to use my phone as a magnifier.
  8. I just noticed that switching terminals via F1-F7 isn’t possible like it is on Linux.

Nothing too special. I do like how flexible the installer is though. It even goes to the extent of asking you how guarded you’d like processes taken out by the kernel to be, and whether or not basic users should have debugging permissions.


Sorry to hear about your complications. Life, eh?

The bulk of my BSD experience is with pfSense (FreeBSD), FreeNAS (FreeBSD) and FreeBSD, itself. I know that BSD likes Intel NICs, so I try to only buy motherboards so equipped, or I stick an Intel NIC, or two, into the build. I don’t remember ever having to do any manual NIC configuration, unless I was setting up Link Aggregation.

I did have an old Supermicro board with Realtek NICs that I used to use for pfSense and I don’t remember needing to perform any special configuration for those, either. What issues were you encountering with networking?


Mainly just ignorance on my part lol. Nothing that is too complicated.

In terms of life, some guy lit himself on fire in front of the middle school right down the road from the high school I go to. He was suicidal. Our school went on lockdown and that lasted for hours. I wish I didn’t know why now lol.

I’ve also been dedicating every second I have to college related stuff and it’s been distracting me from classwork so there’s been a lot of catch-up involved.

Luckily, next week I get 2 days off (Wednesday and Friday), and Thursday is a ditch day for seniors… I probably won’t ditch though lol. Got stuff to do.


Nothing to be ashamed of there. Many aspects of BSD are extremely similar to Linux, so you can sometimes get sucked into thinking that you know exactly what you’re doing, only to have it bite you on the butt. : (


I’d highly recommend linux users try one of the BSDs to see how “everybody else” does it.

Linux is an anomaly in a lot of the ways it does things and often it isn’t better, its just different for the sake of being different.

As you say, you will get tripped up occasionally in the BSD switch but its more like other UNIX variants than Linux in general. Additionally, i much prefer the way it does a lot of things. Like splitting ports/packages off from the core OS, using make for heaps of stuff, etc.


How different is something like Illumos (Solaris descendant) from the BSDs?

Although there is a lot of collaboration between the two projects on OpenZFS, so maybe a better comparison would be a commercial UNIX like AIX; maybe with IBM doing a lot of Linux stuff now, it might have picked up some Linux/GNU-isms along the way.


Take a look at Open Indiana then.


I agree that BSD is much more … elegant in many ways. The only real downside is the size of the community. With a comparatively smaller pool of devs, new hardware support and new feature adoption can sometimes seem painfully slow. That said, BSD’s jails, bhyve hypervisor and Linux Binary Compatibility are all very impressive projects, just to name a few. I don’t think that all BSD devs see the pace of development as a problem, though, since they seem to be much more deliberate, due to their focus on security. If this mindset/reality is not a hindrance to you, IMHO BSD provides a much more rational and enjoyable experience.
My advice is to find a cheap, second hand ThinkPad and take FreeBSD for a whirl. I think that you’ll also be impressed with what BSD have accomplished.
And yes, Linux is different for the sake of being different, because of all of the legal challenges to BSD’s licensing. There was a legitimate fear that AT&T were going to sue BSD, Linux and everyone else into oblivion.
BSD is a complete OS, rather than a hodgepodge of unrelated packages. Obviously, YMMV.


Do any of the BSDs besides OpenBSD and HardenedBSD (fork of FreeBSD) really have more of a focus on security than Linux?


For years there was the core triad of NetBSD, OpenBSD and FreeBSD. Net and Open tended to focus more deeply on security, cryptography, secure communications, portability and interoperability. FreeBSD would implement best practices from its siblings, as well as other projects, such as OpenSolaris (ZFS file system), in addition to its own projects like containers (jails) and virtualization (bhyve) in order to produce a more balanced and highly functional, yet secure operating system. None of the projects ever focused much on the desktop. Although installing KDE was not terribly complicated, their focus has always been on the server.

We have some new BSD projects out there these days, many of which recognize the awesome foundation of BSD and wish to provide a desktop experience worthy of this base. In addition to the desktop, DragonFlyBSD also have a strong focus on performance, particularly of the kernel and of the file system and they typically perform quite well on benchmarks.

Linux has always had a “jack of all trades” approach, with no particular focus. I certainly wouldn’t suggest that security is either an afterthought, or is not valued within the Linux community, but let me put it this way; if not for significant security “opportunities” found in Linux, we would not have projects such as AppArmor and prior to that, the NSA would have never been motivated to develop SELinux. Obviously, security was not the driving motivation in the very first releases of Unix, but no such add-in security projects have ever been necessary for any of the modern BSDs released over the past few decades. I wouldn’t be paranoid deploying a modern Linux server on the Internet, but I’d sleep better with BSD, where security has always been job #1. Servers and security have been their only focus for decades, far predating Linux and they are damn good at it.


I just wanted to thank you for answering that. That’s far better than I could have done it being so new to all of this.

New laptop arrives this weekend. I intend to finish the job :slight_smile:


I had that problem one of the times I was installing gentoo spent a few days going over it and just on a whim decided to restart installing again and it worked the next time, after that got everything installed and setup and distro hopped a few days later.


But FreeBSD has a similar system that they also added after the fact; their Mandatory Access Control was added as part of the TrustedBSD project.

Even OpenBSD’s approach has its flaws; they do an intense amount of code auditing, which is good, but they shy away from more complex security systems. They are working on pledge, but my understanding is that it aims to be something simpler and less capable then a full fledged Mandatory Access Control system.