Author Archive


Update on 3G Modems

We did some testing on 3G modems at OLF and loading the u3g driver seems to do the trick (earlier versions of FreeBSD had a conflict between u3g and umass but this seems to be fixed now). You can load the driver by issuing this command as the superuser:

kldload u3g

If you would like the driver to autoload at boot time, carefully add this line to /boot/loader.conf:


Lars Engels also provided a useful link containing an exhaustive list of APNs, usernames and passwords.

Please let us know if further configuration settings are required (i.e. which are currently not possible to do within the System Network Configuration utility) in order to get your modem to work.


First Look at 9.0 Installer

One of the changes coming in 9.0 is the ability to select multiple desktop environments during installation. Kris completed the code for this late last week and was able to show it off at the PC-BSD booth during Ohio LinuxFest. Here is a preliminary screenshot:

In order to fully integrate the PC-BSD utilities into a desktop manager, the desktop manager must be XDG-compliant. At the moment, the 9.0 installer supports KDE, GNOME, XFCE, and LXDE (not shown in screenshot). In addition to selecting the desktop environment, the user can expand the selection in order to choose which components of the desktop environment will be installed.

Non-XDG-compliant window managers may be added (but won’t fully integrate) or may be made available as PBIs.

We will be looking for testers before the end of this year so we can start finding bugs and submitting bug reports for the included window managers. Leave a comment if your favourite desktop environment/window manager is not listed in this post so it can be considered for inclusion (or a PBI be made if there is not one). Stay tuned for more information on how to become a tester.


Tapatalk Now Available on PC-BSD Forums

Earlier today, Karl Fischer mentioned that Tapatalk might be a useful forum feature. As described on its website, Tapatalk “is a forum app on the iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, and Nokia. Our app provides you super fast forum access to any vBulletin, IPBoard, phpBB or SMF forum that has activated our Tapatalk plugin”.

The forum system administrator added the plugin and has tested that it works for the iPhone and Karl is able to access the forums from Android. Please leave a comment if you have trouble accessing the PC-BSD forums from your phone and we’ll look into it. Otherwise, enjoy!


New PBIs: Mixxx and MESS

The following PBIs are now available in Software Manager:

  • MESS: an acronym that stands for Multi Emulator Super System. MESS will more or less faithfully reproduce computer and console systems on a PC. MESS can currently emulate over 250 systems from the last 5 decades.
  • Mixxx: software for DJ’ing. You can use wave based audio files, Ogg Vorbis and MP3 files as audio input. Mixxx can be controlled through the GUI and with external controllers including MIDI devices, joysticks and more.

Thanks to Jesse Smith for his continued working in creating PBIs.


Driver Update: Nvidia 256.53

The latest NVIDIA driver is now available through Update Manager for both 32 and 64 bit systems. From the release highlights:

  • Fixed a bug that prevented XvMC from initializing in most cases.
  • Added support for xorg-server video driver ABI version 8, which will be included in the upcoming xorg-server-1.9 series of releases.
  • Fixed a bug that caused extremely slow rendering of OpenGL applications on X screens other than screen 0 when using a compositing manager.
  • Fixed a regression introduced after 256.35 that caused stability problems on GPUs such as GeForce GT 240.
  • Fixed a slow kernel virtual address space leak observed whenstarting and stopping OpenGL, CUDA, or VDPAU applications.
  • Fixed a bug that left the system susceptible to hangs when running two or more VDPAU applications simultaneously.

Instructions for using the update can be found by clicking the View Details button in the System Updates tab of Update Manager.


Thanks Button in Forums

A user pointed out today that FreeBSD Forums posts include a Thanks button to thank the poster. We thought that was a great idea so the PC-BSD forums now include that functionality as well.

If you find the information in a post helpful, take a moment to press the Thanks button to let the original poster know. Note that you have to be logged in order to see the Thanks button and to click it.

Help the Project, Donate Today!