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Date:      Wed, 23 Feb 2005 16:35:30 -0500
From:      Mike Hauber <>
Cc:        Anthony Atkielski <>
Subject:   Re: Different OS's? Marketshare
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <>

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On Wednesday 23 February 2005 02:34 pm, Anthony Atkielski wrote:
> Mike Hauber writes:
> > What kind of problems are you having with FreeBSD?  There was
> > a non-specific mention of errors regarding your hard drive,
> > but said everything was working ok.
> I mentioned the main error in a separate thread: After
> successfully installing the OS, I simply cannot persuade the
> machine to boot from the hard disk.  It just blanks the screen
> and stops.  It must be booting _something_, because it normally
> puts up an error message if it cannot find the boot information
> it expects.  So I presume it's passing control to garbage read
> from the disk and this is halting the system silently.
> If I boot from floppy, no problem.  And if I boot from the
> install floppy and then enter the loader, unload the kernel,
> switch the current device to my boot disk (the hard disk), and
> boot from the loader, it comes up instantly.  So there is some
> part of the boot process that's not working.
> I installed FreeBSD with a standard MBR on both disks, and I
> set the first disk to "bootable," but this doesn't seem to
> help, although I'm still trying.
> The other problem I have is SCSI errors that generate massive
> streams of console error messages, although they don't appear
> to be errors that cause data loss.  I got these while moving
> ports onto my machine.  Now that I think about it, I think it
> might be a conflict with an old ISDN card that is still mounted
> in the machine ... hmm.  Anyway, that's secondary.
> I'm sure there are no hardware problems on this machine; it has
> been running flawlessly for eight years.  So anything that
> doesn't work is software.

Found the thread...  Have you tried installing an older version?  
(4.4, for example?)  I've had a lot of issues trying to install 
FreeBSD =>4.9 on pre 586s, but mostly they were setup for a quick 
show&tell (latest & greatest wasn't really necessary).

Not saying that you should settle for an older version, but it may 
help in discovering what the issues are.

> > (I like the drake, though...  It's what I usually recommend
> > for people who are wanting to try something other than
> > windows and don't have the knowledge (desire to learn)
> > necessary to build up a system of their own).
> I'm still quite ambivalent about it.  I keep wondering if Linux
> is different enough and useful enough to be worth dedicating
> this machine to it ... or if I should just continue with
> FreeBSD and install X on the machine (and KDE, probably, since
> it seems to be popular, although I welcome suggestions).

I came to FreeBSD first after deciding that I worked too hard to 
spend any more money on an OS I couldn't depend on (kinda like I 
won't spend money on certain types of video games because they 
ultimately do nothing but parse me off :) ).  Frustrated, I 
bounced back and forth between anything I could get my hands on 
(legally, of course).  I have an entire CD book filled with 
Linuses that I've tried, but ultimately settled with the BSDs.  

Some of the Linuses are great, but I've come to appreciate the 
BSDs more than anything else.  Because of this, I make my 
investments in things that I actually appreciate.

I only suggest Mandrake to people just coming out of windows as to 
to help minimize the frustrations that I went through (I guess 
I'm a symphathiser of sorts, but not so much that I'm willing to 
hold their hand :) ).  

If someone is comfortable enough that they'll actually use the man 
command, ask intelligent questions, and appreciate the 
documentation that's out there (ie, read), then I definately 
suggest a BSD.  (ie, if you can install FreeBSD and setup X, then 
why bother with Mandrake?)  Not that it's a bad OS, just that 
I've found that people who know how/where to learn will come to 
appreciate the BSDs over the other options.

> Which window manager is the closest to classic UNIX window
> managers (as opposed to wannabe Windows products)?

Well...  There's a lot of options available.  Personally, I prefer 
something like blackbox for administrative logins.  It's _very_ 
lightweight and (like all things should be), you pretty much 
build it from the ground up.  


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