Hi all,

Some of you may have seen my posts entitled "Story of a Laptop User"
and "Story of a Desktop User".  For those of you who did not, it can
be a worthwhile read to see what life is like when using FreeBSD as a
desktop.  In short, it is an educational experience.  While FreeBSD
can be coerced to do the right thing, it is rarely there by default
and often doesn't work as well as we would expect.

The following are issues I haven't brought up in the past:

Battery life sucks:  it’s almost as if powerd wasn't running.  Windows
can run for five hours on my laptop while FreeBSD can barely make it
two hours.  I wonder what the key differences are?  Likely it’s that
we focus so much on performance that no one considers power.  ChromeOS
can run for 12 hours on some hardware;  why can't we make FreeBSD run
for 16?

Sound configuration lacks key documentation:  how can I automatically
change between headphones and external speakers?   You can't even do
that in middle of a song at all!  Trust me that you never want to be
staring at an HDA pin configuration.  I'll bet you couldn't even get
sound streaming to other machines working if you tried.

FreeBSD lacks vendor credibility: CUDA is unsupported.  Dropbox hasn't
released a client for FreeBSD.  Nvidia Optimus doesn't function on
FreeBSD.  Can you imagine telling someone to purchase a laptop with
the caveat: "but you won't be able to use your graphics card"?

In any case, half of our desktop support is emulation: flash and opera
only works because of the linuxulator.  There really isn't any reason
for vendors to bother supporting FreeBSD if we are just going to ape
Linux anyways.

That is why on this date I propose that we cease competing on the
desktop market.  FreeBSD should declare 2014 to be "year of the Linux
desktop" and start to rip out the pieces of the OS not needed for
server or embedded use.

Some of you may point to PCBSD and say that we have a chance, but I
must ask you: how does one flavor stand up to the thousands in the
Linux world?

Eitan Adler
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