I recently tried out OpenBSD as a possible answer to recent Linux engineering. I thought I’d share my notes here on my results, from a beginner’s and Linux user’s perspective. (I tried FreeBSD briefly before as well.) If you’ve used OpenBSD more extensively on the desktop, your feedback on any of this is welcome too – I’d like to know what you think of my opinions, you being a longer-term user.
The FreeBSD release engineering team has laid out plans for the next FreeBSD 10 release.
FreeBSD 10.2 is planned to debut on 31 August. The newly-published release schedule pegs the code freeze to begin on 3 July, weekly betas to begin on 10 July, release candidates from the end of July through August, and then the official 10.2-RELEASE at the end of August.
Of course, FreeBSD 10 releases have been subject to delays in the past, but at least it's looking like 10.2 should be out before the end of Q3.
More details on FreeBSD 10.2's schedule via the new FreeBSD.org page.
DragonFlyBSD and other BSD distributions porting the Linux DRM drivers are still several major releases behind the upstream kernel state, but at least they're making progress for those wishing to use the open-source drivers as an alternative to the prominent BSD display driver: the NVIDIA BSD proprietary driver that's of high quality and on par with the Windows and Linux NVIDIA drivers.
For DragonFlyBSD users out there, the swap device with the latest Git kernel can now be encrypted.
It's trivial with the newest DragonFlyBSD code as of this weekend to support an encrypted swap. The commit by DragonFlyBSD founder Matthew Dillon explains, "Implement crypting of the swap device. When enabled in this manner /dev/urandom is used to generate a 256-bit random key and the base device is automatically cryptsetup and mapped, making crypted swap trivial. Implement the 'crypt' fstab option, so swapon -a and swapoff -a work as expected for crypted swap. Again, the base device (e.g. /dev/da0s1b) should be specified. The option will automatically map it with cryptsetup and swap on the mapping."
DragonFlyBSD developers continue porting over code from the Linux kernel's i915 DRM driver for supporting newer Intel graphics features on BSD. The latest work is for matching the DragonFlyBSD's ported Intel driver up through the code found in the Linux 3.14 kernel.
The first beta of GhostBSD 10.1, the desktop-focused distribution using the FreeBSD kernel with MATE Desktop Environment, is now available.