FreeBSD: Back to my roots (updated)

August 31, 2010 | Reading time: 1 minutes

(Updated Aug 9th 2023, see below)

I’ve just started installing a virtual machine of the latest FreeBSD Release (8.1) mainly to see what features my old favorite OS from 1993-1998 has gained to compete with Ubuntu Server. I switched to Ubuntu Server several years ago as my favorite Unix/Unix-Like OS mainly due to ease of updates and installation of software, but now that I’m not able to easily have netatalk have SSL built in (for Mac sharing & Time Machine backups), I’m looking at my old favorite to see what improvements were made.

I’ll probably be posting tips and tricks of my perils and discoveries over the next few weeks (more than likely a post of my initial views later tonight).


Ok-here we go

Using as a guide:


Rock solid and stable (but so is Ubuntu Server)

License Model is more permissive

CC/GCC is installed by default (as it’s required to compile the ports tree)


NO PYTHON BY DEFAULT – This is a big deal, as Python is freakin’ awesome (this is the only modern *nix OS that I’ve used that doesn’t have it installed by default).

Ports tree takes entirely too long to update

Although freebsd-update is a step in the right direction, aptitude is still much better

portupgrade isn’t installed by default and has to be installed via the ports

My humble conclusion

I’ll be sticking with Ubuntu server for my needs due to the availability of precompiled software (which I can easily download source packages and recompile myself) and ease of upgrades.

A Retrospective Update on August 9, 2023

I was 1.1 versions off for the FreeBSD binary ports installer pkg tool (which reads to have appeared in FreeBSD 9.1). Which may have made decision lean more towards FreeBSD. This could have been a huge difference in how I live my life day to day.