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FreeBSD: A Faster Platform For Linux Gaming Than Linux?

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FreeBSD provides a Linux binary compatibility layer that allows 32-bit Linux binaries to be natively executed on this BSD operating system. Linux binary compatibility on FreeBSD allows Linux-only applications to be executed in a near seamless manner on this alternative platform, even for games. New tests have revealed that the modern FreeBSD operating system (via PC-BSD 8.2) can actually outperform Linux when it comes to running OpenGL Linux game binaries.

This Linux binary compatibility support for FreeBSD is commonly referred to as "Linux emulation", but it is not emulating Linux in a traditional sense nor is it acting like Wine in user-space. This is a Linux ABI implementation for the FreeBSD kernel.

The FreeBSD Handbook covers Linux binary compatibility with how to enable the support under FreeBSD. Enabling the support requires loading a Linux KDO (kernel module) and altering the /etc/rc.conf. Linux run-time libraries also need to be installed, which can easily be done by using FreeBSD ports.

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