PC-BSD Hardware Store Opened

PC-BSD LogoJosh Smith has announced the initial launch of the PC-BSD hardware store. This resource is meant to make it easier to find hardware that has been tested to work on PC-BSD.

FreeBSD and PC-BSD are known to be quite particular with regards to hardware support, but now you can check or buy via the PC-BSD store hardware that is known to be working on PC-BSD, and therefore also on FreeBSD. Obviously you can always check the FreeBSD Hardware Notes that come out with each release, e.g. FreeBSD 10 Current9.0, 9.1 or 8.3.

So, if you want to make sure that your hardware is supported by PC-BSD or FreeBSD check the FreeBSD Hardware Notes, PC-BSD wiki hardware section or the PC-BSD Hardware Store. (via)

JabirBSD, a new FreeBSD based project

jabirbsdMuhammadreza Haghiri emailed me about the release of the JabirBSD 1.0.

JabirBSD is a rebranded FreeBSD version for Iranian and Farsi speaking users “with rsync, sudo, nano and a lot of command-line based software”.

This first release is a re-branded version of FreeBSD, with the intention to fork from FreeBSD at a later point. The reason for this forking is, allegedly, due to kernel related changes.

I think it’s great to see developers wanting to take FreeBSD to the next level, but, it could be just me, I’m a bit weary of these new projects. Most of them fall by the wayside due to loss of interest, too small teams or lack of spare time (SecurityBSD TrueBSD, Evoke etc). Unless the project is backed by a company (although that’s not a 100% guarantee – remember Tomahawk Desktop?) or a large team, most of the time the project fizzles out and ceases to exist.

I wish the developers had started off by contributing to FreeBSD (PC-BSD, TrueOS) before deciding to set up their own project, and potentially fork. At the moment JabirBSD 1.0 is the same as FreeBSD and it is not clear how JabirBSD is going to be different from FreeBSD.

Unless developers that already contribute to FreeBSD (or any other project) want to move the project in an incompatible or opposite direction, forking maybe the way forward, but taking that decision should always be a last resort. IMO

JabirBSD 1.0 released

BSDTalk interview with Kris Moore (PC-BSD)

Podcast LogosBSDTalk has a 12 minutes interview with Kris Moore (BSDTalk225) about PC-BSD, recorded at BSDCan 2013. Listen to the podcast as MP3 or OGG.

Previous interviews with Kris Moore can be found here:

PC-BSD, a friendly first-time contributor project

IT World has identified 7 open source projects that are friendly to the first-time contributor to get their teeth in.

Apart from LibreOffice, PostgreSQL and Ubuntu, IT World also shortlists PC-BSD:

PC-BSD Logo

“If Ubuntu sounds interesting, but you want something a little off the beaten path, Dru Lavigne, Director of Community Development at iXsystems, recommends PC-BSD. Based on FreeBSD (which is based on BSD UNIX), PC-BSD is a relatively young desktop operating system funded by iXsystems.

Lavigne says that the PC-BSD Users Handbook makes it easy to get up to speed.

“A whole chapter of the User Handbook is dedicated to the various ways one can get started contributing to the project,”

she says. If documentation is your thing, simply create a wiki account, and get started.

“Editors review and discuss changes to help the writer clearly explain the concepts they are writing about,”

Lavigne explains.

If you’re not ready to dive right in to PC-BSD yet, the forums and IRC channel can help you get familiar with the project community.

“The project and its regular contributors work hard to keep the atmosphere friendly, nip inappropriate behaviour in the bud, and provide an area where users are comfortable helping each other,”

Lavigne says.”

It’s great to see PC-BSD shortlisted. Read the whole article here:

7 open source projects to cut your teeth on (and the ones to avoid) (itworld)

PC-BSD announces pkgng Package Repository for PC-BSD and FreeBSD 9.1

pc-bsd logo 100x100The PC-BSD Project has announced the details on how to access their new PKGNG repository, for PC-BSD and FreeBSD 9.1-Release systems.

“This package repository is frequently updated, usually bi-weekly, with the latest and greatest from the FreeBSD ports tree. We will be using this repository for the PC-BSD rolling release edition, but it can also be used anywhere else you need packages on a PC-BSD or FreeBSD 9.1-RELEASE system. This can include FreeBSD, TrueOS, PC-BSD, Jails and more. Getting setup to use this new repository is easy, and only requires minimal configuration.

For detailed instructions, take a look at the step-by-step directions on the PC-BSD wiki.” (pcbsd blog)

iXsystems debuts exclusive ZFS Encryption Feature in FreeNAS 8.3.1

ixsystems logo

Following the release of FreeNAS 8.3.1, iXsystems has released the following announcement:

iXsystems continues to lead the way for free and open source software with the release of FreeNAS Version 8.3.1. With this update, FreeNAS becomes the first open source storage platform to offer encryption for the advanced Zettabyte File System (ZFS). This is the first point release of the 8.3 branch, including updates to several components for security and stability.

freenas-ixsystems-new-logoFreeNAS makes powerful features easy to use and accessible to everyone; until now, encryption for ZFS has been inaccessible to the general public. Thanks to ZFS encryption, security-conscious users will be able to prevent their data from being read if the disks are disconnected from their system.

The ZFS encryption module runs as fast as unencrypted volumes on processors that support the AES-NI instruction set. AES-NI instructions are available on many Intel and AMD processors.

The encryption key management has been made user friendly with options for automatically restarting the volume, or requiring an operator to manually enter in a key depending on the user’s required level of security. In addition encryption allows for confidence when retiring and recycling hard drives because the drives no longer need to be wiped provided the keys are obliterated.

In the future, iXsystems will be able to bring features and improvements from FreeBSD, the enterprise open source operating system, to the FreeNAS community faster. This is a result of the FreeNAS codebase moving to FreeBSD 9. Alfred Perlstein, VP of Software Engineering at iXsystems, says,

“With the FreeNAS and the FreeBSD code bases closer together, both userbases will benefit from testing and development done on the entire platform.”

FreeNAS 8.3.1 also updates many of the services and components of FreeNAS, providing upgraded hardware support, bug fixes, and performance enhancements. FreeNAS 8.3.0 has been the most popular FreeNAS release to date with over 500,000 downloads. iXsystems is looking forward to the continued growth of the FreeNAS community with the release of version 8.3.1, and to more opportunities to make powerful technology accessible for FreeNAS users.

About FreeNAS® 
FreeNAS is a free and open source Network Attached Storage operating system based on FreeBSD. The goal of the project is to design a lightweight, BSD-based software package that acts as a full featured NAS server, complete with a Django-based web user interface, full ZFS implementation, and the ability to interface with existing networks – regardless of operating system or protocol. The encryption system introduced in Version 8.3.1 makes FreeNAS the only Free and Open Source ZFS encryption offering in the world.

About iXsystems: 
iXsystems builds rock solid enterprise-class server and storage solutions. All of our products are assembled, tested, and shipped from our company headquarters in Silicon Valley. Technical support is provided in-house by the same engineers that build the systems. Thousands of companies, universities, and U.S. Government departments have come to rely on iXsystems’ customer-first commitment to excellence. iXsystems champions the cause of Open Source technology by dedicating extensive resources to several FreeBSD community projects: FreeNAS, PC-BSD, FreeBSD, and TrueOS.