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Comment: Just went through this a few days ago (Score 3, Informative) 267

by mgmartin (#48429921) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Workaday Software For BSD On the Desktop?
I just went through this a few days ago. Seems every year or two, I re-visit FreeBSD and ask myself, what would I miss if I switched entirely. A brief description of my encounters with FreeBSD 10.1 this week below:

1. ZFS cross platform worked beautifully. I have a multi-disk "ZFS on Linux - created" pool. I had no problems importing the pool with FreeBSD. And, as I switched back after running the pool under FreeBSD for a few days, I encountered no issues re-importing the pool under ZFS on Linux.

2. I have many KVM/qemu VMs. I'd love to run bhyve, but many VMs are Windows. It's not too hard to convert the images to boot up under VirtualBox. VirtualBox under FreeBSD works very well. For managing multiple VMs across several servers, I prefer virt-manager /KVM, but VirtualBox could certainly fill this need.

3. While copying large vm images, I realized BSD's cp command doesn't support sparse files. One is left to use rsync. There is the linux/compat cp command which does support sparse, however this cp command crashed on me while copying large files.

4. Minecraft -- It worked great under FreeBSD -- just be sure to follow the directions to point to the correct Java runtime in your Minecraft profile.

5. I installed serveral other programs I use frequently (some binary installs from pkg and some source compiles): Chromium, Thunderbird, Blender, KDE, Gimp, Kdenlive, LibreOffice, OpenJDK , NVidia driver using a 3-headed display, VLC, MPV, HandBrake, FFMpeg, and others. All these worked fine. For the most part, my FreeBSD desktop was indistinguishable from my Linux desktop.

6. I set up several NFS4 exported mount points. No issues mounting these from multiple Linux hosts.

7. Webcam tested no issues. I had to install webcamd and follow the instructions.

8. Audio tested and worked well out of the box.

9. VNC server and clients worked fine.

Overall, I'm -- once again -- very impressed. Setup was fast ( even ports package compiles were very fast ). I'm familiar with FreeBSD, so that helps with the install time. Newcomers should always expect to put in extra time (As mentioned, PCBSD can help get you into a graphical environment quickly, so less of a learning curve). What would I miss if I switched over 100%??? I would miss KVM/virt-manager, native cp support of sparse files, native mkvmerge, and I'd love to get a native Eclipse IDE Luna port., and an intel 7260 Wifi driver. To be fair, I still need to give it more time. I might try again this weekend and coming week, since I'll have some free time. If you enjoy tinkering and learning the details of configuring your OS, FreeBSD is great. For a quick, get-it-up-and-working, PCBSD works very well.

Comment: Re:Legacy file systems should be illegal (Score 4, Informative) 396

by mgmartin (#47236083) Attached to: One Developer's Experience With Real Life Bitrot Under HFS+
As does zfs: man zfs
copies=1 | 2 | 3 Controls the number of copies of data stored for this dataset. These copies are in addition to any redundancy provided by the pool, for example, mirroring or RAID-Z. The copies are stored on different disks, if possible. The space used by multiple copies is charged to the associated file and dataset, changing the used property and counting against quotas and reservations. Changing this property only affects newly-written data. Therefore, set this property at file system creation time by using the -o copies=N option.

Comment: Funny You Ask (Score 1) 818

by mgmartin (#40285225) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Why Aren't You Running KDE?
I'd been running KDE 4.8 on Debian Wheezy for several weeks now. I chose KDE, since GNOME 3 fails miserably on my 3 headed display -- 3 separate X screens with no Xinerama and NVidia 302.11 binaries GTX 560 Ti and a Geforce 9600 GT. KDE at least would load. GNOME3 menu bar gets all messed up with duplicated calendars and other horrific menu strangeness ( even on a new, clean user account ).

KDE 4.8 works well, but a few anyone things like trying to open a konsole from the menu never opened on the active head. Composite would sometimes just stop working on one head, but continue to work on the other heads. A kwin --replace would fix this issue ( after several attempts ).

My biggest complaint with KDE is my computer just felt slooooooow. for a quad core with 12GB mem. Even with composite disabled, things felt slower than what I had been used to from running GNOME 2 for some time prior. Slow login and even after login I would launch a Konsole icon and sometimes sit and wait for 20 seconds while KDE continues to initialize or do something. Alt tab between apps, min/max windows and general paints just seemed very sluggish. Not a scientific benchmark, but spending years and hours in front of a Linux desktop, and you just know.

I switched to XFCE4 / Slim packages a few days ago and couldn't be happier. I feel like my computer is back again. Very fast, and it understands the 3 heads very well for placing Panels where I want them placed. And the Terminal Emulator menu actually opens the terminal on the active head with mouse focus. Compositor works well, though not as feature rich as KDE, I get nice transparencies and shadows that work.

I noticed xfce4 tears playing video in VLC more that KDE when compositor is enabled, but a quick disable of the compositor works fast and well to turn on and off which fixes the tearing. Turning composite on/off with the KDE system caused issues.

XFCE4 is now also on my laptop and it works very well for me.

"Probably the best operating system in the world is the [operating system] made for the PDP-11 by Bell Laboratories." - Ted Nelson, October 1977

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