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Date:      Tue, 27 Feb 2001 09:40:15 -0800
From:      "Ted Mittelstaedt" <>
To:        "richard childers" <>
Cc:        "Aaron Hill" <>, <>, <freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.ORG>
Subject:   RE: Pimping FreeBSD Information (was: 'Order')
Message-ID:  <000001c0a0e4$57d469a0$>
In-Reply-To: <>

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>-----Original Message-----
>From: richard childers []
>Sent: Tuesday, February 27, 2001 7:16 AM
>To: Ted Mittelstaedt
>Cc: Aaron Hill;; freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.ORG
>Subject: Pimping FreeBSD Information (was: 'Order')
>Maybe you should offer to send free copies to people

You obviously haven't read question #1 on the book FAQ on the website

... or quote from your
>book, instead of just referring to it.

The AW website has a large excerpt from the book - and at a number of trade
sample chapters were handed out.  If anyone wants one they are free to
e-mail me offline.

>I've seen two references to this book ... two attempts to pander
>it, to pimp
>it, to sell it, to drum up orders for it ...

Great!  For all the advertising that's been done by AW that's a pretty good
return rate!

> but I don's see you, Ted,
>contributing any expertise. Just sales advertisements.

Check the FreeBSD FAQ,
question 3.1  Also check the archives of
5 years of my columns are up there, many cover aspects of FreeBSD.

>Maybe I'm wrong ... maybe you've offered help,


 quoted copiously from the
>book, time and again. Maybe there are entire chapters posted
>somewhere where
>people can read them, and use them, without lining your pockets.

I'll admit that when the publisher asked me about posting a sample
chapter on my book website I vetoed it.  I also realize that some other
books do have sample chapters posted.  However, this is not because I
and the publisher are opposed to handing out samples.  I decided this
because if someone is interested in the book I want to know who they
are, and I can't get that from hitcounts.

>If I am, I'm sure others - not you, Ted - will inform me. And I will duly
>But so far you seem indistinguishable from any other parasite whom has
>latched upon another's free software as a way to make money.

Sorry about that - obviously your misinformed.  The thing is that there's
links off the book website that answer everything you've brought up.

>... So, distinguish yourself. Post some free material. Quit
>pandering. Answer
>some questions or go away. Quit pushing your pathetic book.

Some questions are not answerable in a post to the mailing list.  When
posts "Tell me how to set up a FreeBSD mailserver for a network of e-mail
clients" I submit that attempting to poop out a 10-page dissertation on it
and post it to -questions is completely and totally beyond the charter here.

Sure, you can refer them to various URL's.  I do, and if they check out my
URL guess what - there's a link there to a list of online Computer Bits
that explain how to do it, that have been online since 1996.  Not only that
but the Computer Bits website has been in the major search engines for a

Some people simply don't WANT to be driven to on-line URLs, they either want
a book or they want in essense a guru to give them hours of free consulting
time that's tailored to their specific site and needs.  That's not
for the -questions list and it's not fair either - many of the guru's that
post here have jobs where they are charging people to do exactly that.  It's
perfectly acceptable to ask some easily-answered questions on a mailing list
here, we aren't in the habit of withholding information or demanding a
credit card for it.  But it's over the line when the questioner demands
extensive, customized information that would take hours of analysis to
answer, and that's only applicable to themselves, and some of the very
general questions posted here are exactly those kinds of questions in

It's also very unfair when a questioner asks a question and gets an answer
they don't like and starts harping for a different one.  How many times have
we all read "I have this ancient network adapter I got from a flea market
for 50 cents that has a broken driver and I want you to fix the bugs in the
driver instead of going down to CompUSA and spending $10 for a Realtek-based
that's superior and has a working driver"  A lot of the FreeBSD people, like
myself, have basically stopped answering those types of questions because we
already answered them when we made the hardware compatibility list!

>Where did you get your information? From the net ... for free ...
>of course.

Some of it.  However, would you believe that the majority of information in
both my columns and the book are the result of hours and hours spent using
FreeBSD myself and in various companies that I've worked for, and in
for companies that contracted me to do it for them.  If you consider my
time as having value then it's definitely not free.

>'Nuff sed.

Richard, you raise an interesting point that has been asked by a number of
with no clear answer.  Basically it is: for FreeBSD to become widely used,
there must be many people that use it full-time, all day long, and develop
for it,
and deploy it.  How are these people going to eat?  Well, some of them can
eat by building FreeBSD servers for others, but that takes a lot of time
away from developing directly for FreeBSD.  What it boils down to is that
the only way to keep developers fed, and to give them maximum exposure time
to FreeBSD so they can continue to enhance it and develop new apps for it,
is to allow them to make money from it somehow.  So far, the only thing that
anyone has come up with that answers that bill is FreeBSD consulting for a
fee.  Certainly I can't feed myself from book sales, you'd laugh if you knew
how little money comes from it.  But, consulting for a fee is probably
viewed by you as completely contrary to the "spirit" of FreeBSD, I'd guess.

So, what I (and others here no doubt) are probably wondering is if you,
Richard, have a great idea that we haven't thought of, of how we can feed
ourselves from FreeBSD and not have most of our time diverted into
non-FreeBSD jobs, or jobs where FreeBSD is only involved in a peripheral
manner, and still be able to hand out ream after ream of customized,
targeted, specific help for free.

Ted Mittelstaedt            
Author of:          The FreeBSD Corporate Networker's Guide
Book website:

>-- richard
>Ted Mittelstaedt wrote:
>> Maybe you should read the book and tell us an unbiased
>> opinion of it.  ;-)
>> Ted Mittelstaedt            
>> Author of:          The FreeBSD Corporate Networker's Guide
>> Book website:
>> >-----Original Message-----
>> >From: richard childers []
>> >Sent: Monday, February 26, 2001 10:07 PM
>> >To: Ted Mittelstaedt
>> >Cc: Aaron Hill;; freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.ORG
>> >Subject: Re: Order
>> >
>> >
>> >And we all know how much a referral from the author is worth, relatively
>> >speaking ...
>> >
>> >-- richard
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >Ted Mittelstaedt wrote:
>> >
>> >> >From: owner-freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.ORG
>> >> >[mailto:owner-freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.ORG]On Behalf Of Aaron Hill
>> >> >
>> >> >Gail,
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >> >Also, please look through that Internet site mentioned as you
>> >will find it
>> >> >offers other titles than just the FreeBSD manual. One such example
>> >> >is a book
>> >> >titled The Complete FreeBSD which many people on this mailing list
>> >> >use, you
>> >> >can find this book (with CDs) by following this link...
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >> >
>> >>
>> >> Or The FreeBSD Corporate Networker's Guide, my book, which HAS a 4.2
>> >> FreeBSD CDROM included.  It is also available overseas - see the
>> >> website for a list of bookstores.
>> >>
>> >> Ted Mittelstaedt            
>> >> Author of:          The FreeBSD Corporate Networker's Guide
>> >> Book website:
>> >>
>> >> To Unsubscribe: send mail to
>> >> with "unsubscribe freebsd-questions" in the body of the message
>> >
>> >--
>> >Richard A. Childers
>> >Senor UNIX Administrator
>> > (email)
>> >203.556.8471 (voice/msgs)
>> >
>> ># Providing administrative expertise (not 'damage control') since 1986.
>> ># PGP fingerprint: 7EFF 164A E878 7B04 8E9F  32B6 72C2 D8A2 582C 4AFA
>> >
>> >
>> >
>Richard A. Childers
>Senor UNIX Administrator
> (email)
>203.556.8471 (voice/msgs)
># Providing administrative expertise (not 'damage control') since 1986.
># PGP fingerprint: 7EFF 164A E878 7B04 8E9F  32B6 72C2 D8A2 582C 4AFA

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