Author Archive


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.


Finding Supported Hardware

Having a searchable list/database of supported hardware is always a good thing and something we don’t currently have. This recent thread in the Advocacy forum suggests a layout similar to Haiku’s hardware page.

We can add a similar page to the PC-BSD website, but definitely need your help researching information to include. Beyond the FreeBSD Hardware list and the FreeBSD Laptop compatability list, are you aware of other lists of supported hardware? Are you aware of any OEMs that provide supported hardware?

Also, we’re looking for suggestions on where to put this info on the website so it is easy to find. Is there a current entry in the menu bar that makes sense to link to? Should another entry be added to the red menu bar or the white area above it? Should a button be added somewhere else on the main page? If so, any takers on designing such button?


Looking for 3G Modem Testers

How to configure 3G modems comes up fairly frequently in the forums and, most recently, in this mailing list thread.

Since PC-BSD already provides a GUI for PPP/PPPoE configuration in System Settings -> System Network Configuration, it makes sense to add the necessary knobs here so that a user can easily setup their 3G modem. The problem is that the main developer does not have access to such a modem/network. If you use a 3G modem, you can help us add and test the required functionality needed in this GUI.

Leave a comment if you would like to become a 3G modem tester. Also leave a comment if you already know which steps are missing so we can start adding that functionality.


PC-BSD Q&A in this Week’s Issue of DistroWatch

Jesse Smith from DistroWatch (who himself has written about PC-BSD for BSD Mag and who has submitted many PBIs) recently asked DistroWatch readers to submit questions about PC-BSD for me to answer. The questions and answers appear in this week’s issue of Distrowatch.

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