probsd org wrote:
I'm a long time proponent of FreeBSD as a server. For a long time I've
really wanted a FreeBSD system as a desktop. So, I decided to install the
FreeBSD 6.2 and compile xorg, gnome, mozilla, etc... to give it a whirl.
For anyone reading this, who wants the same thing.
DO NOT DO IT. Nothing works. java is borked, mozilla and firefox
are borked, gnome is ify.... ugh.
Just dont do it. As a server, I highly recommend it... but it
isn't ready for the desktop.
I don't want to offend, but I may. For starters, I'm not sure if that
what you were trying to do or not. Basically, it sounds like just
another person who gave up before finding what the rest of us see as
Nirvana. Whatever, here's my mini-rant:
Since when is the FreeBSD Project responsible for the software of Sun
Microsystems and the Mozilla Foundation? (And, incidentally, I've not
had too many issues with FireFox, Mozilla, or Java. My Flash is borked
ATM, but I'm not blaming Macromedia or the FreeBSD project, I'm just
waiting until I have time to sort it out again).
I think the key words above are "give it a whirl". That's not what you
do. You make a conscious decision to jettison some other option in
favor of FreeBSD on the desktop, and then you do it. It's somewhat
demanding. It sometimes takes a while to get right. It even requires
revisiting now and again. My parents aren't quite up to the task, for
Is it worth it? I think it is for me, now (2 years later). Many people
will tell their 'old' hardware "hasta la Vista" ;-) in the next several
months, but I won't. If I want new hardware, I'll get it, but not
because my software says I have to. Furthermore, I have had many of
their so-called "advanced features" on my desktop computers for a long
time, and I didn't have to contribute to the Gates foundation for any of
And I've got other desktop machines in my office (and some of my
clients' offices) with no MSFT tax on them either. And if I want
another desktop made from junk I buy from Ebay or find in my closets,
I'll have it, and a combination of software that will most likely work
on it. I don't have to give substantial portions of my income to
hardware vendors, because I have access to a system that will still work
on a Pentium II, if I desire to use one.
FreeBSD configuration isn't "fire and forget" for servers (although its
daily operation very well *could* be), so why should it be that way with
a graphical interface? If anything, "RTFM" is much more important when
attempting to create a GUI environment. Problem is, FreeBSD isn't
responsible for the majority of the GUI software, so you end up with a
bit of "hodgepodge research" to do. The FreeBSD Handbook has some
information on basic configuration, but for the million+one combinations
that people want as a desktop, you kinda have to search for your
answers. (Linux experience might be handy there, heh.)
I'm not calling you names or attempting to insult you in any way. I
wish you luck with whatever OS you use on your desktop. For the sake of
humanity, I hope it's a Free OS.
Gee, the script found a good quote for the .sig:
You can always find what you're not looking for.
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