Making computing easier: PC-BSD 9.1

pc-bsd logo 100x100Distrowatch has favourable review of recently released PC-BSD 9.1:

…”Nothing is perfect and PC-BSD does have an Achilles’ heel, specifically hardware compatibility. As much as I enjoyed the polish and the features and the wonderful ease of use, I suspect hardware support will be the make or break issue for most people. On my desktop machine I could get PC-BSD working, but only with reduced resolution and video performance. On my laptop things basically worked well, but it took a little tinkering to get my wireless card up and running. When running the operating system in a virtual machine I installed the VirtualBox guest additions, but couldn’t get PC-BSD to display its desktop at full resolution. Luckily hardware support with PC-BSD is not a trial and error process, the hardware compatibility tool takes the surprises out of testing the distribution, even when running from the plain installation media.

I definitely recommend trying PC-BSD. This new release has really taken a step forward in usability and features compared to where the project was even a year ago. I would say 9.1 brings to the table a level of ease of use and trouble-free administration only found in a few of the top ranking Linux distributions. It is well worth the time to test drive this latest release.”

You can read the review in its entirety here: Making computing easier: PC-BSD 9.1.

If you’re not going to install PC-BSD 9.1 but are curious what it looks like, have a look at the screenshots on Chris Haney’s website.

Happy 2013 and miscelaneous news

Happy 2013 to all regular readers and the occasional visitor. It’s been a while since this site was updated, but this was due to work and holidays.

Hopefully we’ll see FreeBSD 10 released this year and the use of FreeBSD increased.

Followers of the FreeBSD Central Google+ page will have had regular updates over the last few weeks. Please subscribe to that page and stay even more up-to-date with all that’s happening the FreeBSD Community.

In case you missed it, there have been some releases and the FreeBSD Foundation successfully completed its fund raising drive.

  • FreeBSD releases 9.1 and blows through fundraising target [The H]
  • FreeBSD 9.1-RELEASE Announcement [FreeBSD]
  • The PC-BSD Team announces the availablilty of PC-BSD 9.1 [PC-BSD Blog]
  • EuroBSDCon 2012 presentations available online [Youtube]
  •  FreeBSD 9.1-RELEASE now available on all VPS and Dedicated Server packages [RootBSD]

PC-BSD 9.1 RC3 available for testing

According to a PC-BSD blog post, RC3 images for the upcoming PC-BSD 9.1 are now available for i386 and amd64 architectures.

Notable changes since the previous release candidate:

  • PC-BSD handbook has been updated for 9.1
  • Fixed bug where some keyboard layouts were not being displayed
  • Multiple functionality and stability improvements for EasyPBI
  • Multiple functionality and stability improvements for TrueOS
  • New functionality improvements including better detection added to the mount-tray
  • Fixed bug where default mount points were not being set correctly using ZFS mirror/raidz mode
  • Fixed bug where update manager was not displaying the proper error text when failing
  • Added new ability to create ZFS datasets for jail environments
  • Added UK wireless channel 12 support
  • Fixed bug where Linux jails were not importing properly
  • Mirrors are now auto detected and set based upon location
  • Automatic ZFS 4K blocksize enabled by default
  • System manager should now show the correct dialog for “default”
    auto-detected mirrors.

If you come across any issues or bugs, please let the team know via the testing mailinglist.

FreeBSD Events Update (MeetBSD, KyivBSD)

We have a quick FreeBSD related events update: one that’s upcoming(MeetBSD) and one that has taken place already (KyivBSD).

MeetBSD California 2012

MeetBSD California will be held this upcoming weekend, November 3-4 at Yahoo! in Santa Clara, CA.

Josh Paetzel will be presenting “FreeNAS: Storage for Open Source” and Kris Moore will be presenting “The Warden – FreeBSD and Linux Jail Management

KyivBSD 2012

KyivBSD 2012 took place in September. Andrei has written up a summary (EN – Google Translate) of the day. Another conference took place that same weekend which had an effect on the number of visitors. The page contains links to the videos and presentation summaries.

FreeBSD 9.1-RC2 available (and PC-BSD 9.1-RC2)

The second RC build for the FreeBSD-9.1 release cycle was released last week (due to a busy break abroad I’m posting this only now). ISO images for the amd64, i386, ia64, powerpc, and powerpc64 architectures are available.

Remember, this is not the final release version, so only use for testing purposes.

The FreeBSD 9.1 Release Schedule may be of interest, though the release is slightly delayed, as well as the FreeBSD 9.1 ToDo Wiki.

Following this FreeBSD release, the PC-BSD Project has announced PC-BSD 9.1-RC2.

FreeNAS 8 Plugins

FreeNAS 8.2 and newer versions have support for plugins, i.e. extentions in the form of PC-BSD‘s PBIs (Push Button Install).

There’s some good plugin documentation available on the FreeNAS website explaining how to use the plugins, how to install the plugins jail, how to create, find, install, and configure PBIs, such as Firefly, miniDLNA and Transmission. If there’s no PBI available (yet), the page shows how you can create your own PBIs, and how to install non-PBI software using the FreeBSD ports and packages collections.

Plugin support is still a bit crude in FreeNAS 8.2, but it is looking a lot more polished in the upcoming FreeNAS 8.3.

FreeNAS 8 Plugins

FreeNAS 8.2.0 Plugins Part 1: Installing

FreeNAS 8.3.0 Plugins Part 2: Plugins Configuration