Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
I downloaded the latest version of PC-BSD. This is not a Linux distribution. As the title of the OS says in plain view, it’s a BSD based UNIX. In this instance, FreeBSD based.
Obviously UNIX can work on the desktop. Ask any Mac OS X user. But I digress.
PC-BSD is a rather large operating system. The 32-bit flavor requires at least two CDs (and optionally a third), or one DVD. 64-bit flavor is DVD only. While it’s true you could use "boot-only" versions, most people would opt for the full OS.
PC-BSD also requires a fair amount of computing horsepower just to run it. The recommended system requirements in its own documentation suggest a Pentium 4 or higher with 512MB RAM, 12GB free hard drive space, network card, sound card and 3D accelerated NVIDIA or Intel video card.