Released: GhostBSD 2.0

Last week GhostBSD 2.0 was released

GhostBSD is a free operating system based on FreeBSD that can either be installed or run as Live-CD. Its default graphical environment is GNOME and GhostBSD 2.0 is based on FreeBSD 8.2.

The installer is not a point-and-click GUI but a python script. However, for most people who have used BSD or Linux, the questions are self explanatory.

Some of the changes, additions and features are:

  • support auto mount of USB Devices!
  • new logo
  • bug fixes
  • new live file system
  • improvements to GDM
  • based upon FreeBSD 8.2
  • package installation and management can be done with the new package manager, Bxpkg

Included software packages are:

  • Gnome 2.32
  • Rhythmbox 0.12.8_3
  • Pidgin 2.7.7
  • Firefox 3.6
  • Thunderbird 3.0.11

Prashanth has written a review on Das U-Blog: Review: GhostBSD 2.0

I tried to install GhostBSD 2.0 in VirtualBox but some issue would not allow the installer finish installation.

The GhostBSD Team has also released a new website. Unfortunately, it’s still very bare and contains some bugs and spelling errors. Hopefully this will be dealt with soon.

Let’s see how GhostBSD and PC-BSD 9.0 (Gnome) will square up…

PBI 9.0 re-implemented for Free/PC-BSD

A few days ago I mentioned that Kris Moore would be attending AsiaBSDCon 2011. Due to the changed circumstances in Japan Kris won’t be able to make this presentation now.

However, from his slides on the new PBI 9.0 format you can pretty much figure out what he was going to present. These slides are available in PDF format: The PBI Format re-implemented for Free/PC-BSD.

PBI 9 will be part of the upcoming PC-BSD 9.0 and Kris has written up an article in the lasted BSD Magazine on his progress and what new features we can expect: A quick look at the upcoming PC-BSD 9.

 

Available: FreeNAS 8.0-RC3

Josh Paetzel has announced the third Release Candidate of FreeNAS. A number of bugs have been squashed, problems fixed, and, surprisingly for an RC3, new features added (volume importer in the storage application).

Highlights include

  • a volume importer
  • better AFP support (Apple Filing Protocol)
  • better SMB/CIFS configs based on user input
  • iSCSI support reworked and improved
  • support for 6gbps 3Ware controllers addes
  • HTTPS access for the GUI

More information and details can be found in the release notes.

Links

 

PC-BSD 9-CURRENT testing snapshot

If you have some free time this week and wanting to check out some of the new features of the upcoming PC-BSD 9.0, you can download and test drive the latest snapshot of PC-BSD 9.0.

One of the most interesting features are support of multiple window managers (gnome, kde, fluxbox etc) and the new PBI format.

If you come across any issues or if you have any suggestions, you may report them to the testing mailing list.

Download the PC-BSD 9-CURRENT testing snapshot

pfSense: Build an UTM, and 2.0-RC1 available

smallnetbuilder.com has an article (Build your own UTM with pfSense) showing what you can do with pfSense as Unified Threat Management appliance, esp. with regards to
Intrusion Detection and Prevention, Anti-Virus, Content Filtering, Anti-Spam and Traffic Control.

The concept of Unified Threat Management is straightforward: on the outer reaches of your network perimeter, you install an appliance that stops all possible threats to your network, an über firewall, as it were. The fact of the matter is that UTM hardware is expected to completely overtake separate network protection hardware.

[...]

pfSense can perform all these functions to some extent. To judge how well pfSense meets these UTM requirements, I’ve given a subjective grade to each set of UTM function groups. Once we’ve defined how these functions thwart threats, and how pfSense meets those challenges, we’ll upgrade Cerberus, and see how it performs as a UTM. more

The article concludes with:

With pfSense, this content is largely free – making pfSense, with all of its patchwork flaws, very compelling. The value proposition of pfSense is significant. It is free, open, and no expensive subscriptions are needed to protect your network. Free something is better than nothing.

Chris Buechler has also announced the availability of pfSense 2.0-RC1 (pfSense 2.0-RC1 now available):

Years and many thousands of hours in the making, pfSense 2.0 Release Candidate 1 is now available!

Check it out, test it, and leave feedback on the pfSense forums

Making a software RAID1 under FreeNAS (video)

These two videos show how to set up a software RAID1 under FreeNAS.

If you’re wondering what RAID1 means, RAID1 uses mirroring to write data to for instance two drives. This means that when you write a file or save a video, the file is written to two disks. If one of the disks fails, you simply replace it and rebuild the mirror, i.e. one disk is an exact copy of they other. The tradeoff with this setup is cost. With RAID1, you purchase double the amount of storage space that your data requires.

Video 1


Video 2


Available: FreeNAS 8.0 RC2

iXsystems has announced FreeNAS RC2. Josh Paetzel writes:

I uploaded RC2 to Sourceforge Friday and am just getting around to an announcement now, some health issues prevented me from gettin as much computer time as I would’ve liked this weekend.

That being said, RC2 is now available! Please check out the release notes when you download, we introduced an upgrade via the GUI feature in RC1, so with this release that can be taken advantage of.

This version contains fixes for issues that were encountered in RC1. It does not contain the list of new functionality that was scheduled for RC2, but it contains enough fixes that it was a significant improvement over RC1.

FreeNAS 8 should be installed to a USB stick or Compact Flash device. It requires a device of at least 1 GB in size. In a departure from FreeNAS 0.7 releases, the OS drive can not be used as a component for a volume, nor can it be partitioned for sharing.

New in this RC:

GUI Firmware upgrades are supported, but do to a bug in the interaction between FreeBSD, lighttpd, and python they work intermittantly. There is a work-around which wasn’t implemented in time for RC2. The procedure involves running commands from the CLI shell. etc etc

Links:

Released: PC-BSD 8.2 (Hubble Edition)

Following the release of FreeBSD 8.2, iXsystems has now released PC-BSD 8.2.

As you will know, PC-BSD closely follows FreeBSD’s release cycle (on which it is based) but makes it easier for use on the desktop. As a sidenote, Dru Lavigne, PC-BSD’s Community Manager, is doing a presentation this weekend at Scale 2011 on how PC-BSD compares to Linux and FreeBSD. This is her presentation outline:


With regards to the release of PC-BSD 8.2 (Hubble Edition), this version contains a number of enhancements and improvements. For a full list of changes, have a look at the changelog.

Some of the notable changes are:

  • FreeBSD 8.2-Release
  • KDE 4.5.5
  • Added ability to select file-system type and encryption during auto-partitioning
  • Able to toggle between MBR/GPT partitioning
  • Various bug fixes to the wireless / network managers

Version 8.2 of PC-BSD is available for download from the mirrors, as well as via torrent from gotbsd.net.