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BSD

DragonFlyBSD 5.3 Works Towards Performance Improvements

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BSD

Given that DragonFlyBSD recently landed some SMP performance improvements and other performance optimizations in its kernel for 5.3-DEVELOPMENT but as well finished tidying up its Spectre mitigation, this weekend I spent some time running some benchmarks on DragonFlyBSD 5.2 and 5.3-DEVELOPMENT to see how the performance has shifted for an Intel Xeon system.

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DragonFly BSD 5.2.0

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Reviews
BSD

My experience with DragonFly this week was a lot like my experiences with other members of the BSD family. The system is lightweight, provides lots of useful documentation and gives us a minimal platform from which to build our operating system. The system was stable, fast and provided me with most of the software I wanted. Apart from DragonFly not working with my desktop computer's hardware, I had an overall good experience with the operating system.

I had mixed feelings about H2. At this point the file system seems stable and can be used for most common tasks. However, the advanced features that make the future of H2 look so appealing, are not all in place yet. So it might be best to wait another year before switching over to H2 if you want to make the most of snapshots and other advanced file system options.

DragonFly is typically regarded as a server operating system, and that is where its strengths lie. However, this week I feel it performed well as a desktop platform too. It takes a little while to set up DragonFly as a desktop, but the documentation walks us through most of the process and I was able to do everything I would typically do on Linux desktop distribution.

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Also: Server maker IXsystems sets sail with new TrueNAS flagship

FreeBSD 11.2-BETA2 Now Available, DragonFly BSD 5.2.1

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BSD

FreeBSD on the System76 Galago Pro

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Reviews
BSD

Hey all, It’s been a while since I last posted but I thought I would hammer something out here. My most recent purchase was a System76 Galago Pro. I thought, afer playing with POP! OS a bit, is there any reason I couldn’t get BSD on this thing. Turns out the answer is no, no there isnt and it works pretty decently.

To get some accounting stuff out of the way I tested this all on FreeBSD Head and 11.1, and all of it is valid as of May 10, 2018. Head is a fast moving target so some of this is only bound to improve.

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FreeBSD 11.2 Beta Now Available For Testing

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BSD

FreeBSD 11.2 has reached the beta milestone to succeed FreeBSD 11.1 from last year and ahead of FreeBSD 12.0 that is expected this November.

FreeBSD 11.2 is targeted for release around the end of June but before then they expect to do a total of three beta releases and up to three release candidates.

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MidnightBSD Could Be Your Gateway to FreeBSD

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BSD

The Xfce desktop interface will make you feel right at home on MidnightBSD; learn how to set it up in this tutorial from Jack Wallen.
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs

FreeBSD is an open source operating system that descended from the famous Berkeley Software Distribution. The first version of FreeBSD was released in 1993 and is still going strong. Around 2007, Lucas Holt wanted to create a fork of FreeBSD that made use of the GnuStep implementation of the OpenStep (now Cocoa) Objective-C frameworks, widget toolkit, and application development tools. To that end, he began development of the MidnightBSD desktop distribution.

MidnightBSD (named after Lucas’s cat, Midnight) is still in active (albeit slow) development. The latest stable release (0.8.6) has been available since August, 2017. Although the BSD distributions aren’t what you might call user-friendly, getting up to speed on their installation is a great way to familiarize yourself with how to deal with an ncurses installation and with finalizing an install via the command line.

In the end, you’ll wind up with desktop distribution of a very reliable fork of FreeBSD. It’ll take a bit of work, but if you’re a Linux user looking to stretch your skills… this is a good place to start.

I want to walk you through the process of installing MidnightBSD, how to add a graphical desktop environment, and then how to install applications.

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BSD: p2k18 Hackathon and LLVM

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BSD

TrueOS 18.03

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Reviews
BSD

TrueOS is a rolling release operating system based on FreeBSD's development (-CURRENT) branch. The TrueOS operating system is available in two editions: a Desktop flavour and a Server flavour. The Desktop edition ships with the Lumina desktop environment, a graphical package manager and other graphical tools for managing the operating system. The Desktop edition is an approximately 2.4GB download and the Server edition is 884MB in size. I downloaded the Desktop edition for my TrueOS trial.

Installing

Booting from the Desktop edition's media brings up a graphical system installer. At the bottom of the installer there is a collection of buttons for launching tools to help us set up the system. One button opens a hardware compatibility checker so we can confirm devices such as our video card and network connection are recognized by TrueOS. Another button opens a window where we can configure our keyboard, a third button opens the system's network settings and another launches a terminal emulator, giving us access to the command line. I quite like having these options, especially the hardware compatibility tool as it largely makes up for TrueOS not having a live desktop environment for us to test drive.

The installer only has a few screens. We are asked to select our preferred language from a list and then choose whether to set up the Desktop or Server edition of TrueOS. We can also restore old copies of TrueOS that have been archived using the project's Life Preserver backup tool. Finally, we are given the opportunity to customize the storage options. TrueOS uses ZFS for handling storage and we can optionally name the ZFS storage pool, select which disk or partition to use and tweak options for sub-volumes. People who are not familiar with ZFS can probably take the default options offered.

The installer then sets up the operating system and, the first time we boot into the new copy of TrueOS, we are asked to complete a few more customisations. A graphical first-run wizard asks us to confirm which video driver it should use, select our time zone and create a password for the administrator account. We are also asked to provide a username and password for our regular account. The last screen gives us a chance to enable/disable some services, such as IPv6 support and the OpenSSH secure shell.

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LLVM and GNU Compilers: Glow and GCC 9

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Development
GNU
BSD
  • Thank you from the Glow Developers

    Hello LLVM community,

    We have been working hard on a new domain specific optimizing compiler, and we are pleased to announce that we have recently open sourced the project!  We would like to introduce you to Glow, an optimizing compiler for neural networks!

  • Glow: An LLVM Optimizing Compiler For Neural Networks

    The latest interesting use of the LLVM compiler infrastructure stack is for Glow, a machine learning / neural network optimizing compiler.

    Glow is intended to be used by high-level machine learning frameworks and it in turn -- via leveraging LLVM -- will generate optimized code for different hardware targets.

  • GCC 9.0 Sees A Number Of BRIG Improvements For HSA

    Being very early in the GCC 9.0 development cycle following the GCC 8 stable release earlier this week, a number of BRIG front-end improvements have landed. BRIG as a reminder is the binary form for HSA IL.

    In January of 2017 is when the GCC BRIG support landed in time for GCC 7. With the GCC 8 release there are some BRIG improvements for this compiler's HSA support, but nothing really too notable. Sadly, since this code has been merged, I haven't heard of any major users of this code intended for supporting HSA accelerators with AMD seemingly divesting in HSA.

KDE and BSD Leftovers

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KDE
BSD
  • Qt on Microcontrollers (MCU)

    People often ask us about if it’s possible to use Qt for software development on microcontrollers (MCU), and if Qt can run without an operating system (“bare metal”). Today we will answer these questions and show you some concrete examples.

  • KDE Plasma 5 Stack Should Now Be In Good Shape For FreeBSD Ports

    Following years of work in bringing the KDE Plasma 5 desktop to FreeBSD, it's getting into shape and the x11/kde5 package is now in the ports tree for easing the process of setting up the modern KDE desktop stack.

    On FreeBSD installations, from the ports tree it should now be as easy as fetching x11/xorg x11/sddm x11/kde5 for getting the latest KDE Plasma desktop, KDE Frameworks 5, and KDE Applications going for a desktop environment. Up until now this was only possible if using the "Area51" repository on FreeBSD.

  • Welcome x11/kde5 to the FreeBSD Ports Tree

    There is no KDE5. There are KDE Frameworks 5 (releasing monthly, now reaching version 5.45) and KDE Plasma Desktop 5 (releasing quarterly, I think, now 5.12) and KDE Applications (releasing semi-anually, called 18.04).

    For the FreeBSD ports tree, there is a x11/kde5. It is a metaport, which means it collects other ports together; in this case, x11/kf5-frameworks (metaport for all the frameworks), x11/plasma5-plasma-desktop and a fistful of KDE Applications metaports (e.g. the metaport for KDE games, and the metaport for KDE graphics applications, and the metaport for what-we-consider-essential KDE applications like konsole, konqueror, dolphin, and okular). So, from a bare FreeBSD installation, installing x11/xorg, x11/sddm, and x11/kde5 should get you close to a working modern KDE Desktop experience. Throw in www/falkon and devel/kdevelop for a developer workstation, or graphics/krita for an artists workstation, and you’ve got a daily driver.

  • The Akademy 2018 program is now available

    Akademy 2018 organisers have published the program for the conference part of the event. This year the event will be held in Vienna, and talks will take place on the 11th and 12th of August.

  • One Of LLVM's Top Contributors Quits Development Over CoC, Outreach Program

    Rafael Avila de Espindola is the fifth most active contributor to LLVM with more than 4,300 commits since 2006, but now he has decided to part ways with the project.

    Rafael posted a rather lengthy mailing list message to fellow LLVM developers today entitled I am leaving llvm. 

    [...]

    Of the 900+ authors to LLVM, Rafael was the fifth most contributor to LLVM by commit count with 4,344 commits (2.65% of all commits0 and in the process added 157,679 lines of code. He had been contributing since 14 May 2006 and was many times the most active LLVM contributor in a given month while working for the likes of Google and Mozilla. In fact, for 2013 through 2015 he was the most active author each year. His contributions will certainly be missed.

  • Happy Birthday, GPS Stash Hunt!

    On an unrelated side note, I’m working on consolidating mirsolutios.de (as my business is long defunct) into www.mirbsd.org (as “The MirOS Project” was folded back into “MirBSD”, i.e. my private /usr/src and /usr/ports, this year). This simplifies some stuff, I’ll need no vhosts, and EU-DSGVO conformity should come with less effort (I’m reducing logging alongside).

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Cozy Is A Nice Linux Audiobook Player For DRM-Free Audio Files

You could use any audio player to listen to audiobooks, but a specialized audiobook player like Cozy makes everything easier, by remembering your playback position and continuing from where you left off for each audiobook, or by letting you set the playback speed of each book individually, among others. The Cozy interface lets you browse books by author, reader or recency, while also providing search functionality. Books front covers are supported by Cozy - either by using embedded images, or by adding a cover.jpg or cover.png image in the book folder, which is automatically picked up and displayed by Cozy. When you click on an audiobook, Cozy lists the book chapters on the right, while displaying the book cover (if available) on the left, along with the book name, author and the last played time, along with total and remaining time: Read more

New KDE.ru website

Today, on September 18th, 2018, the Russian-speaking KDE community launches its updated website on KDE.ru. The new website serves as the main page for the Russian-speaking community. It provides localized information about the community, product download links and the list of social network pages we maintain. It is also meant to help new members get involved in KDE’s projects, particularly in our translation and promotion efforts. The website was created by me and Alexander Potashev on top of Jonah Brüchert‘s work for plasma-mobile.org. It uses Jekyll and is now hosted on official KDE servers. It replaces the old forum that has significantly lost its users in the past years. Read more

Variety Wallpaper Changer And Downloader 0.7.0 Ported To Python 3, Adds Support For Settings GDM Background

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10 Free Open Source Tools for Creating Your Own VPN

As more people use the Internet everyday they are becoming more conscious about their privacy with regards to how much of the information they don’t want to share at all is being compromised. Tons of VPN services have been created to solidify users’ safety but that doesn’t seem to be enough as there seems to be an increasing need to create custom VPNs. It isn’t a bad thing to create a VPN service for yourself and there are actually a good number of developers and organizations that favour this habit. Today, we bring you a list of the best open-source tools that you can use to create your own VPN. Some of them are relatively more difficult to set up and use than the others and they all have their feature highlights. Depending on the reason why you want to deploy your own VPN, choose the title that is suitable for you. Read more