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Date:      Mon, 20 Apr 2020 01:24:43 -0700
From:      Ihor Antonov <>
Subject:   Re: Wayland on FreeBSD
Message-ID:  <5058973.kMyvyFPq5o@amos>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <> <>

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On Sunday, 19 April 2020 23:49:42 PDT Clay Daniels wrote:
> > On Fri, Apr 17, 2020 at 3:35 PM Tomasz CEDRO <> wrote:
> > Hello world :-)
> > 
> > Time to move from X11 to Wayland :-)
> > Not everyone is so convinced that Wayland will replace Xorg:
> _______________________________________________

That is exactly what I wanted to say, but kept my mouth shut, but since you 
started :)   I apologize upfront for this, but after reading FreeBSD mailing 
lists for a while I just can't read this any more like this is something 
normal. Here it comes:

Yes X is old and insecure. There are literally 2 developers still supporting 
it and both work for Red Hat. They have already announced that they are going 
to stop supporting it soon. OpenBSD folks at least attempted to make X better, 
but in the end even they have admitted that X11 is "a giant keylogger".

BUT FreeBSD folks are conservative bunch, some especially don't like changes 
that come from "linsucks". Others say that FreeBSD is a server OS. Same 
"server OS advocates" comfortably sit behind their MacBooks. There are ones 
that  make a living with it so any unnecessary change at the very least is 
ignored or at most is actively being not welcomed.

Many actively complain at their own desktop team when it tries to  keep Intel 
GPU drivers working (which requires following Linux DRM APIs), but nobody is 
trying to write "proper BSD Intel drivers".

Don't get me wrong, there are people (like Warner Losh) in FreeBSD who are 
trying to keep the OS in the present, but even they have hard time convincing 
people that finishing the 25-year swing on removing malloc.h is the right thing 
to do. Many were not happy with removing bktr(4) Brooktree Video Capture card 
drivers (you can't find this hardware today even on a garage sale)

There are many more examples, these are just the fresh ones. Read arch mailing 
list, I am not making this up). A few progressive developers are outnumbered 
by fanatics of retro-computing. "Don't fix what is already broken" they say, 
"nobody uses it anyway" :P 

I am afraid that on FreeBSD Wayland will remain a third-class citizen. 
Look at sway for example: it needs Linux Kernel event API (evdev, luckily on 
by default in 12),  epoll-shim and eudev-shim, and then some magic with barely 
documented kern.evdev.rcpt_mask=12 in sysctl.conf to make it work.

Why? Because FreeBSD folks are generally not interested in contributing proper 
kqueue and devd support to "linusucks" projects. As well as maintaining X11. 
Linux developers are not going to write that either. The amount of linuxisms 
and shims is only going to grow, the desktop team is fighting an uphill battle 
here, there is no proper infrastructure for them to give users good Wayland 
support. All they can offer is shims, hacks and workarounds.

And so Wayland will slowly but surely replace X in Linux world. But even in 10 
years FreeBSD hackers will keep using rotting X11, will keep stating that they 
had jails first, ZFS is cool, GPL is evil and Netflix uses FreeBSD on their 

FreeBSD is not a general purpose OS. It is a server OS, It is retro OS. It is 
OS that fills the niche where closing sources is needed for commercial success.
An OS you want to put somewhere and never ever touch it again. It is not a 
desktop OS, quoting someone from this very mailing list: "It is power to 
serve, not power to desktop!"

> > Not everyone is so convinced that Wayland will replace Xorg.
On FreeBSD it simply never will.

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