But is the Linux the only operating system in the world? Surely not! Shall I tell you few words about other systems? Why not?
I see your mouse pointer now rolling towards "close" icon on your window. You most likely think that this my post is about Windows or Mac. Stop, wait a moment. Of course not!
This my post is about BSD. BSD stands for "Berkeley Software Distribution". This is open source operating system developed by University of California in Berkeley. It is UNIX-based, which makes it relative to Linux. By the way, BSD is also "parent" for Mac OS X.
Debian, Slackware, Arch and others. Same way, BSD has FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, DragonFly... and FreeSBIE.
I think first and seconds of them are most known by people, while others are not so famous.
You maybe know that I prefer to test Live versions of Operating systems. Unfortunately, neither FreeBSD nor OpenBSD have Live versions. Their distributives are for installation purposes only. Though, FreeBSD site has a link to its clone with Live CD: FreeSBIE. Unfortunately, latest available version of FreeSBIE (2.0.1) is dated January 2007, which is just few months younger than my laptop Compaq C300. Let's have a look how well they can live together.
Image file for FreeSBIE weights just under 700 Mb, which means I can burn it to CD-RW for test purposes. OK, CD is ready and placed into the drive. Reboot. Let's go!
First impression from FreeSBIE was not so nice. It took extremely long time to boot. Though, that might be my own fault - my CD-RW is in far from ideal condition.
By default FreeSBIE boots into command line interface. You automatically get into home folder for user. What can you do there? Basically, anything you want to do in CLI. Navigate through directories, list them, start programs or... startx. Yes, that was my command in FreeSBIE which led me to graphic interface. Again, it took significant time to load, because disk was read at extremely low speed. First of all, grey pattern covers whole screen. Then it changes to white background with mouse in the middle: this is XFCE without any doubt. Finally nice desktop wallpaper opens you a window with shore and pier view.
Booted XFCE desktop environment in FreeSBIE had something like conky enabled. It shows that fully booted system takes only 130M. Wow! That is quite impressive!
Of course wireless network card (Broadcom 4311) is not enabled. It could be expected from system released just few months after hardware release.
What surprised me more is the fact that even local disks were not mounted. And I could not mount them manually. The reason was very simple: I could not create mount point, because file system was in read-only mode.
What is included in FreeSBIE? Like it is said in release notes, developers tried to put a tool for almost any imaginable task.
|Actually, I have never seen so nicely written Release Notes! They are very clear, comprehensive and still easy to read!|
Network tools include: Firefox 1.5, Thunderbird, gFTP and others tools.
GIMP 2.2, Inkskape are main parts in Graphics, although there are some more items.
Multimedia tools include MPlayer, BMPx and Beep Media Player.
I have moaned above about disk speed. If I drop this from the scope, system itself works very fast. Snappy menus, switches and so on. Just a CD which spoils all the impession.
I have also mentioned above that I could not mount any drives on my local machine. Having only FreeSBIE system alone, I could not check any multimedia facilities it had.
General impression: That is a pity that FreeSBIE is abandoned project. It has very powerful base in face of FreeBSD, but needs developers to continue work on it. It gives users what FreeBSD does not give: Live version which would allow to touch a system before installation.
I had previous experience with another "dead" project: BerliOS. That system did not start at all. FreeSBIE was better in this, as I could make few steps there and leave my footsteps on Daemon's soil.
http://martik-scorp.blogspot.com/2011/01/freesbie-based-on-freebsd.html - review by Martik
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freesbie - Wikipedia page