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PC-BSD May Be the Next Linux

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With all of the BSD variants available for download, it's easy to incorrectly assume all of them are pure, incompatible forks from each other. Actually, there are more shades of BSD out in the world than just separate forks. One in particular made the news a couple of weeks ago when it was commercially acquired.

The BSD in question is PC-BSD. The company that bought it (for the ubiquitous "undisclosed" terms) is iXsystems, a systems deployment and integrator firm out of San Jose that has pretty strong experience implementing *BSD, Unix and Linux systems for its customer base. So, why, pray tell, did the company up and buy PC-BSD?

The answer may lie in the type of operating system PC-BSD is. Unlike other, incompatible, BSD variants, PC-BSD is completely compatible with its antecedent FreeBSD. It is, for all intents and purposes, a FreeBSD distribution, in much the same way Red Hat or SUSE are Linux distributions. In fact, the similarity runs a bit deeper than that, since PC-BSD has long been designed with business users in mind. Its acquisition only solidifies that commonality.

Full Story.

Why iXsystems Bought PC-BSD

iXsystems is a leading provider of high-performance computing clusters, blade servers, rackmount servers, and storage solutions based on FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD, and Linux. iXsystems also recently announced its acquisition of the PC-BSD operating system.

I had the opportunity to interview Kris Moore, founder and lead developer of the PC-BSD project, and Matt Olander, CTO of iXsystems, about the acquisition.

Dru: From both the PC-BSD and iXsystems perspectives, what were the reasons for considering a collaboration and what benefits do you perceive from the acquisition?

Matt: From a server manufacturing perspective, we want to help our customers adopt the platform that is right for them. Of course, we ship quite a few systems with some flavor of Linux pre-installed, but it tends to be because the customer is looking for a commercially supported operating system. If iXsystems can assist increasing the adoption of FreeBSD, we think that's a good thing for us as well as our customers. A higher adoption rate of FreeBSD encourages vendors to provide documentation so that the appropriate drivers can be created and supported. It also attracts developers to the project so that FreeBSD continues to progress and be the modern, stable operating system platform that it is currently.

Full Interview.

You talk the talk, but do you waddle the waddle?

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