The PC-BSD team has announced version 10.0 Joule Edition is now in official release status and is available for mass distribution. If you’ve used PC-BSD in the past you haven’t seen anything yet! PC-BSD 10.0’s feature rich front end runs beautifully without sacrificing the stability we all know and love from FreeBSD’s base system. This week we’re going to look back and highlight some of best new features now available in PC-BSD Version 10.0 — Joule Edition.
AMD / ATI graphics are now officially supported under PC-BSD. Although in the past AMD Radeon users have suffered from lack-of-driver-itis, those days are passed and a new age is upon us. I’m currently running PC-BSD on 3 different types of AMD graphics based systems and the performance is arguably better than some of my nvidia based test systems (sorry Nvidia fanboys :D). I was even more surprised when ATI hybrid graphics worked out of the box on my Samsung NP-350 Notebook computer. Especially considering this laptop was designed for…Windows 8…*BARF*
You will notice there are a couple of quirks to be aware of with the new Radeon drivers that we are currently aware of. Firstly the CTRL F keys do not bring up the console. This is being actively remedied by FreeBSD and we expect there will be a fix committed in the near future. Also KDE support for Radeon is there, but i’ve noticed that I experience random freeze ups from time to time on any of my Radeon systems. Using any other desktop environment seemed to fix the issue for me.
More of your favorite Desktop Environments! We’ve now added Gnome 3, Cinnamon, and mate to the list of desktops available under PC-BSD 10.0. Mate has officially replaced Gnome 2 in version 10.0, but Gnome 3 and Cinnamon will remain as “unsupported” desktops currently until further development and additional testing are done to bring them up to speed in PC-BSD. That being said feel free to report issues with these desktops with the understanding that they are currently in a “beta” stage and are offered without any guarantee. For best results with your PC-BSD experience use supported desktops!
The Grub and FreeBSD boot loaders have both received updated support to work with PC-BSD version 10.0. Have your choice now during installation for whatever boot loader works best for you. As we continue to work with the Grub boot loader our support is evolving simultaneously to give you even better compatibility.
In other news this week if any users are still using RC’s 1–5 please update to PC-BSD 10.0 — Release before reporting bugs so we can make sure we aren’t duplicating tickets for issues that have already been submitted and /or resolved.
Special thanks to the entire PC-BSD team including our testers, committers, and administrators. Without you guys this release wouldn’t be what it is today and we sincerely thank you all for your dedication in making PC-BSD Joule Edition a success.
The big news of the week is finally here! PC-BSD 10 images are ready for testing. These images are offered for testing and development purposes only! (Read disclaimer below). They are still in alpha so by all means fire away, but expect breakage. The more of you that can delve into this and get us feedback on bug reports the better!
PC-BSD 10.0 will offer a UEFI loader on installation media, as well as the newly polished life preserver system app. Also the installer will now offer the ability to choose between GRUB or BSD bootloader.
Over the course of the next several weeks more packages and PBI’s will become available as they become available / working for us. Keep an eye out on 10.0 updates here on the weekly feature digest.
This image is a very early cut of the new stable/10 branch of FreeBSD and is probably only suitable for advanced users or developers. A PKGNG repository is available for this release, however it is missing a number of packages we would normally ship with, such as virtualbox drivers, KDE accessories, etc. The AppCafe will currently appear empty, but we plan on populating it over the next few weeks.
Josh Smith has announced the initial launch of the PC-BSD hardware store. This resource is meant to make it easier to find hardware that has been tested to work on PC-BSD. The store itself is here. If you have hardware that you know works and which you don’t see listed, please add it to the Hardware section of the wiki so that it can be included.
The PC-BSD team will be launching a new webstore designed to take the hassle out of knowing which hardware works well with PC-BSD. A wiki page has been created where users can add the models of the motherboards, video cards, network cards, wifi cards, and laptops they have found to work great with PC-BSD. When adding to the wiki, only add hardware that you have verified works as-is with no problem.
To add to the hardware list, create a wiki account so that you can login and edit the page. Since this list will get rather large, please add your entry alphabetically.
A testing snapshot that integrates the new DRM/GEM/KMS work is now available to testers.
DANGER: this snapshot should be considered alpha quality and for testing purposes only!
This snapshot is meant to provide testers the opportunity to provide feedback regarding Intel, ATI and NVIDIA video cards which currently are not fully supported using the existing FreeBSD Xorg drivers. Please report any issues you find to the FreeBSD X11 mailing list so that the FreeBSDD Xorg porting team can address them.
As an added bonus, this snapshot contains the shiny new 9.1 installer. Feedback on the installer should be sent to the PC-BSD testing mailing list. Currently, the new installer is totally undocumented, but that should change over the next few weeks.
ISC hosts portions of the PC-BSD infrastructure. Due to increased growth in the number of users using PC-BSD, the old infrastructure at ISC has been completely replaced. This should result in faster download times and updates for PC-BSD users.
For those of you interested in the technical details, the frontend box is a 6 core Xeon 5647 running at 2.93ghz, with an additional open CPU socket. This box has 48GB of RAM, and is running FreeBSD 9.0-RC3 on a pair of 1TB SATA disks in a ZFS mirror. This box provides trac/svn/rsync/ftp services to the outside world, and also runs an internal PostgresQL server for trac.
The backend box is a TrueNAS storage server connected via redundant point to point 10gigE to the front end box. NFS exports a RAIDZ of 4 2TB SATA drives with SSD L2ARC. This box a has a single quad core Westmere, with an empty CPU socket in case expansion is needed, running at 2.4ghz and 48GB of RAM.
Both machines have redundant hot swap power, hot swap drives, as well as LOM (lights out management) provided via dedicated IPMI.
The old hardware is being donated to ISC.