PC-BSD 9.1-BETA1 available for testing

The PC-BSD Team has announced BETA1 of the upcoming PC-BSD 9.1 and the images have been uploaded.

This beta provides both users and developers a way to test out the new features in the upcoming PC-BSD 9.1 release.

PC-BSD 9.1 comes with some exciting new features that will make things a lot easier for home/office users and administrators. There’s better sound configuration, support for running Linux in jails, multiple boot environments etc.

Other highlight are:

  • FreeBSD 9.1
  • KDE 4.8.4
  • New system installer! Greatly simplified for desktop and server installs.
  • New “PC-BSD Server” installation option. Includes command-line utilities like pbi-manager, warden, metapkgmanager and more.
  • Support for ZFS mirror / raidz(1,2,3) during installation.
  • Support for SWAP on ZFS, allowing entire disk ZFS installation.
  • Support for setting additional ZFS data-set options, such as compression, noexec, etc.
  • Warden jail management integrated into system. Allows creating jails via GUI, adding packages and other administration.
  • Support for Warden to create Linux Jails
  • New “Hardware compatibility” GUI
  • First boot setup wizard allows OEM installs to be easily performed.
  • New Bluetooth paring tray / GUI utilities.
  • New AppCafe improvements and preferences
  • Improvements to wifi utility
  • Fixed bug causing untranslated strings to show up empty.
  • Numerous bug-fixes to PC-BSD related utilities
  • Support for creating PXE boot server for remote desktop and installation.
  • ZFS beadm support

Happy testing.

FreeNAS 8.2 Released

After four beta releases and one release candidate (RC), iXsystems has announced the release of FreeNAS 8.2.0, a FreeBSD-based operating systems for Network Attached Storage (NAS) systems.

This new release is the first 8.x branch release support plugins or extensions. These were available in the 0.7.x brach, prior to the project was taken over by iXsystems, but were temporarily left out of  FreeNAS 8.0 so the developers could focus on making the new base (based on FreeBSD 8) sound and solid before adding advanced features.

Plugins and other extensions are now available as optional PBI (Push Button Installer) packages that run in a FreeBSD jail. This means that plugins are running separate from the FreeNAS and sandboxed for security, but can be controlled via the FreeNAS web-based user interface. If you have used PC-BSD, you will realise the potential and the usability of these PBIs. Plugins are currently available for Roku and iTunes (Firefly) streaming, and DLNA (MiniDLNA), as well as BitTorrent (Transmission).

The FreeNAS development team is pleased to announce the immediate availability of FreeNAS 8.2.0-RELEASE.

FreeNAS 8.2.0-RELEASE is the first release on new branch of code that incorporates tighter integration between the ZFS command line and the FreeNAS GUI. This release also features the ability to run arbitrary services and interact with them through the FreeNAS GUI in a FreeBSD jail. This jail allows a wide range of third party software to be run on top of FreeNAS, using the PBI format from PC-BSD or FreeBSD packages or ports, as well as official FreeNAS plugins.

Apart from PBI plugin support there are many other new features:

  • Support for iSCSI target reload.
  • GUI support for SAS and FC multipath hardware.
  • Webshell accessible from the FreeNAS web interface.
  • ZFS scrubs are configurable from the GUI.
  • A newer web toolkit is used in the GUI, enabling use of mobile browsers.
  • An autotuning script tunes ZFS for the hardware it’s running on.

Read the press release, the release notesannouncement or download FreeNAS 8.2.0

Unixmen Interview: BSD For Human Beings?

Continuing his BSD summer interviews, Bill Toulas conducted an interview with Kris Moore, the founder and current leader of development of the desktop user-friendly PC-BSD project.

The questions asked and answered are:

  • As the founder of PC-BSD, what can you tell us about your decision to start this project? How did you get involved with BSD systems, and what drove you into creating one?
  • What is your current role in PC-BSD?
  • Why did you choose Free-BSD as the basis for your system?
  • What goodies from Free-BSD can be found on PC-BSD? Are all the innovative security tools of Free-BSD available on PC-BSD too?
  • I found the installer and the AppCafe very user-friendly. What else is there making user’s life easier, while also confirming PC-BSD’s desktop aiming?
  • Ubuntu is considered to be the most user-friendly and most well-supported free operating system out there. Why would one choose PC-BSD instead of Ubuntu?
  • For a desktop OS, apart from user-friendliness and user-support, it is also important to offer as better hardware and software compatibility as possible. How are you doing on this sector?
  • Although using PC-BSD was generally a relaxed and nice experience for me, I was kind of disappointed by the use of GNOME 2 in your latest version. Is this a decision of yours for usability purposes, or are you planning to port GNOME 3 on the next release?
  • When are we going to see the next release, and what will be the highlights of it?

BSD For Human Beings? | Interview

Gentoo FreeBSD

Most of you will have read, or maybe even used, Debian GNU/kFreeBSD, which is an operating system consisting of FreeBSD kernel with a GNU userland, but there’s also Gentoo FreeBSD.

So what is Gentoo FreeBSD? According to the Gentoo FreeBSD project page, Gentoo/FreeBSD (or Gentoo/FBSD, or G/FBSD) is an effort to create a complete FreeBSD-based Gentoo system, sharing the complete administration facilities of Gentoo with the reliability of the FreeBSD kernel and userland. An experimental, yet incomplete release have been done, and it’s possible to install Gentoo/FreeBSD following the install guide.

I don’t think I’ve referred to Gentoo FreeBSD before.

Traffic Shaping with pfSense and HFSC (video)

This screencast demonstrates the use of a pfSense device for traffic shaping on a typical home network, with the goals of minimizing latency and maximizing throughput. In particular, we use a three-tier queue configuration where a parent speedboost queue on each interface contains leaf queues that catch all the traffic. The speedboost queues use HFSC’s non-linear service curve to match the behavior of the comcast speedboost. The leaf queues are configured to partition the available bandwidth, and automatically allow ‘borrowing’ when there is no contention.


Section links:

  • Installation / Setup: 3min:01sec
  • Monitoring: 6min:30sec
  • Traffic Shaping: 15min:34sec

New PC-BSD development snapshot – 2012/06/22

Yet it seems there is no official announcment for this snapshot, but you can find on PC-BSD mirrors page a new release !

It’s the release of the 2012-06-22, there is no changelog/readme so I can’t tell what’s new exactly in, but I’m sure there is a lot of bug fixes !

You can get the iso/usb images by choosing a mirror on this page : http://www.pcbsd.org/getmirrors.php?url=9-STABLE-20120622

There is a lot of work done from the PC-BSD 9.0 release ! The installer is now easier and cleaner, the AppCafé has been modifed too, and each new snapshot include the latest userland and kernel.