Originally Posted by ~sHyLoCk~
Please share your experience of freeBSD
I don't complain about the lacking of the sophisticated functions or the weak support of the newest hardware. I'm unable to run basic functions on three years old machine.
I can't run the command:
$ xterm +sb -fg white -bg black geometry 99x49+64+0 -fn 9x15
because xterm replies:
Warning: Cannot convert string "nil2" to type FontStruct
and runs in small window.
It displays the same message when I run it with the command xterm alone.
I tried to add font path /usr/local/lib/X11/fonts/misc/ using the command:
$ xset fp+ /usr/local/lib/X11/fonts/misc/
but xset replied:
xset: bad font path element (#23), possible causes are:
Directory does not exist or has wrong permissions
Directory missing fonts.dir
Incorrect font server address or syntax
so it was impossible too.
The 23-rd element in fonts.alias file is nil2. Directory /usr/local/lib/X11/fonts/misc/ exists and fonts.dir file exists too.
So I have to use small xterm window with tiny font.
Midnight Commander issue
I can't change Midnight Commander configuration. When I try to write changes the program displays the message:
Setup saved to ~/.mc/ini
but doesn't create ~/.mc/ini file and when I exit it and run for the next time the program runs in the default configuration.
Default Midnight Commander settings are very uncomfortable from my point of view.
I can't use the command such as:
$ su -c "ppp -ddial provider_name"
despite I'm the member of the group wheel because su replays:
su: only root may use -c
So I have to open root's session to execute root's commands.
It isn't comfortable when I want to run just one command.
I can mount my pendrive in the system using the command:
# mount -t msdosfs /dev/da0s1 /pendrive
I added that line:
/dev/da0s1 /pendrive msdosfs rw,noauto 0 0
to /etc/fstab file but when I try the command:
# mount pendrive
program mount replies:
mount: pendrive: unknown special file or file system
It's strange because I still can mount pendrive manually using the above command.
Manual mounting of devices isn't comfortable.
mouse and keyboard issues
I described that kind of issues generally in the post #56. I spent a lot of time reading and testing different tips found on http://forums.freebsd.org/
and on the other sites. None of these tips worked for me.
Today I stated that the system update may resolve some of these issues. So I ran the commands:
# freebsd-update fetch
# freebsd-update install
After reboot I observed unpleasant messages:
KLD pflog.ko: depends on pf - not available
kldload: Can't load pflog: No such file or directory
/etc/rc: WARNING: Unable to load kernel module pflog
link_elf: symbol altq_disable undefined
kldload: Can't load pf: No such file or directory
/etc/rc: WARNING: Unable to load kernel module pf
Because I didn't see any positive results of that update I canceled it using the command:
# freebsd-update rollback
Now pf and pflog work well again as they did before the update.
It's 24 hours when I registered in http://forums.freebsd.org/
. I'm still waiting for e-mail with the confirmation. Without it I can't post to that forum.
Midnight Commander issue (cont.)
Finally I removed Midnight Commander and installed Midnight Commander Light. It allows to store configuration settings in ~/.mc/ini but has ugly colors theme. I sought for default color theme in Internet but as yet I didn't found any.
Anyway I'd like to ask on FreeBSD forum why regular Midnight Commander's port doesn't work well.
http://forums.freebsd.org/ issue (cont.)
Today I got e-mail with my registration's confirmation. Unfortunately I still can't complete the registration because of some problems with FreeBSD forums. The site is temporarily dead.
Before it displayed a really cool message:
Error 503 Service Unavailable
Now it displays something more conventional:
The database has encountered a problem.
Please try the following:
* Load the page again by clicking the Refresh button in your web browser.
* Open the forums.freebsd.org home page, then try to open another page.
* Click the Back button to try another link.
The forums.freebsd.org forum technical staff have been notified of the error, though you may contact them if the problem persists.
We apologise for any inconvenience.
So I have to wait a little.
http://forums.freebsd.org/ issue (cont.)
Bingo! FreeBSD forums work again and I was able to complete my registration.
Before asking questions on FreeBSD forums I installed the entire system once again from the scratch. I wanted to get rid of the mess I made trying different tips.
xterm issue -- solved
I caused that issue myself. I put into fonts.alias file aliases for Latin 2 encoded fonts such as:
Among them I put two commented lines such as:
# 7x13euro -misc-fixed-medium-r-normal--13-120-75-75-c-70-iso8859-15
Today during the configuration of the newly installed system I discovered that it's enough to remove these two comments to avoid the problems with xterm.
Midnight Commander issue -- partially solved
I invented the method of storing configuration settings when using regular Midnight Commander. It's enough to create ~/.mc directory. The program is unable to create it from ``Options | Save setup'' menu. When the directory exists the program stores there its settings and allows to write to cooledit.clip file from menu ``File | Copy to file''.
I reported that bug to the maintainer of misc/mc port.
Unfortunately I encountered some new bug. After the reboot of the system Midnight Commander runs properly but a few minutes later it starts to run in about 30 seconds.
Midnight Commander issue -- completely solved
It seems I finally resolved the last problem. When I installed FreeBSD yesterday I configured local network in a proper way. When I installed it today I forgot to customize /etc/hosts file. It caused some error messages during start and stop of X Window as well as slow startup of Midnight Commander.
su issue -- solved
I inspected man su in FreeBSD. In Linux -c switch allows to put the specific command. In FreeBSD:
mount issue -- solved
Use the settings of the specified login class. Only allowed for the super-user.
It was issue caused by tiny differences between Linux and FreeBSD.
Assuming I have in Linux's /etc/fstab an entry:
/dev/sdb1 /pendrive vfat user,noauto,umask=000 0 0
and in FreeBSD's /etc/fstab an entry:
/dev/da0s1 /pendrive msdosfs rw,noauto 0 0
I can mount pendrive in Linux using the commands:
# cd /
# mount pendrive
but I cannot mount pendrive in FreeBSD with these commands -- I have to use the commands:
# cd /
# mount /pendrive
In the other words: when I use mount command in FreeBSD I have to use the full path regardless of the current directory.
Midnight Commander issue from post #56 -- partially solved
I wrote in post #56: ``Midnight Commander displays strange characters (including Polish diacritics) instead of the frames''. That problem concerns console mode -- in X Window Midnight Commander displays frames properly.
I wrote two scripts resolving that problem by replacing diacritics in console mode by sticky characters:
if [ "$TERM" = "xterm" ] ; then mc ; else mc -a ; fi
if ( "$term" == "xterm" ) then
I called both these scripts ``cm''. First is for regular users and second for root. I put them in the appropriate ~/bin directories.
In the first case instead of the script is possible to use an alias assuming that regular users use /bin/sh as a shell.
Unfortunately it's impossible to change the second script to an alias assuming that root uses /bin/csh as a shell.
So to avoid the exceptions I used in all cases scripts.
Of course you can use sh script for root and csh one for other users. The script doesn't have to use the same shell as the user. I wrote csh script as an exercise and I suppose it's my last csh script.
Polish keyboard issue from post #56 -- partially solved
I wrote in post #56: ``Polish keyboard doesn't work in CLI nor in X Window despite I installed it during set up procedures''. In fact I thought about that problem in a Linux way.
I assumed: if in /etc/rc.conf there are keyboard map and font definitions:
my keyboard should work in console mode.
I supposed also I need two keyboard definitions for X Window: one for UTF-8 and one for ISO8859-2.
I was wrong.
In FreeBSD to use national keyboards each user needs ~/.login_conf file with the definition of the character set and the language:
me: :charset=iso-8859-2: :lang=pl_PL.ISO8859-2:
Both these definitions are necessary to valid work of the keyboard in the console mode, terminal emulator and GUI applications.
Unfortunately lang variable changes also the language of the system and the programs. So either you have Polish keyboard or you have English-language system and applications. It's very disappointing.
So I have new problem: how to get Polish keyboard and don't lose English-language system.
charset/lang issue -- solved
I removed ``me:'' definitions from ~/.login_conf files.
Instead of it I put in user's ~/.profile files these two lines:
MM_CHARSET=ISO-8859-2; export MM_CHARSET
LC_CTYPE=pl_PL.ISO8859-2; export LC_CTYPE
and in root's .cshrc file these two lines:
setenv MM_CHARSET ISO-8859-2
setenv LC_CTYPE pl_PL.ISO8859-2
In result I can type and write in Polish language using console, xterm and GUI applications and the system language is still English.
auto-complete issue from post #56 -- solved
I wrote in post #56: ``Auto-complete function doesn't work for regular users -- it works for root''. Now I think it's a feature of the shell. In FreeBSD root uses by default csh and regular users use sh. The first shell offers completion and the second doesn't. So either change shell or don't complain.
third mouse button's paste function issue from post #56 -- solved
I solved these problems:
* Third mouse button doesn't work at all.
* Third mouse button's emulation works in X Window and doesn't work in the console mode independently of HAL.
Third mouse button's paste function started to work after I put in /boot/loader.conf file that line:
It should affect Synaptics' TouchPad but in my case instead of it it affected automagically TrackPoint.
freebsd-update issue -- solved
If you use custom kernel after the update affecting generic kernel modules you have to rebuild your own kernel. Thanks for the tip to anomie from http://forums.freebsd.org
TouchPad scrolling issue -- partially solved
I have installed in my system port /usr/ports/x11-drivers/xf86-input-synaptics.
I added two options to /boot/loader.conf:
I updated my /etc/X11/xorg.conf:
Identifier "X.org Configured"
Screen 0 "Screen0" 0 0
#InputDevice "Mouse0" "CorePointer"
InputDevice "Touchpad0" "CorePointer"
InputDevice "Keyboard0" "CoreKeyboard"
Option "Protocol" "psm"
Option "Device" "/dev/psm0"
Option "LeftEdge" "1700"
Option "RightEdge" "5300"
Option "TopEdge" "1700"
Option "BottomEdge" "4200"
Option "FingerLow" "25"
Option "FingerHigh" "30"
Option "MaxTapTime" "180"
Option "MaxTapMov" "220"
Option "VertScrollDelta" "100"
Option "HorizScrollDelta" "100"
Option "MinSpeed" "0.06"
Option "MaxSpeed" "0.06"
Option "AccelFactor" "0.0010"
Option "ScrollButtonRepeat" "100"
Option "UpDownScrolling" "on"
Option "UpDownRepeat" "on"
Option "LeftRightScrolling" "on"
Option "LeftRightRepeat" "on"
Because moused used psm0 device:
# ps ax | grep psm0
40 ?? WL 0:00.43 [irq12: psm0]
512 ?? Is 0:00.18 /usr/sbin/moused -p /dev/psm0 -t auto
699 ?? I 0:00.01 hald-addon-mouse-sysmouse: /dev/psm0 (hald-addon-mouse-sy)
1217 p1 S+ 0:00.00 grep psm0
I disabled it in /etc/rc.conf:
After reboot TrackPoint and TouchPad don't work in console mode because moused is disabled.
TrackPoint works in X Window as before -- without scrolling. TouchPad works with vertical scrolling but without horizontal one.
As for scrolling with TouchPad it's progress but the price is high: mouse stopped to work in the console mode. TrackPoint scrolling issue is still unsolved.
Thanks for these tips to LateNiteTV and guro from http://forums.freebsd.org
TrackPoint and TouchPad issues -- solved
I compared the output of the command:
# lshal | grep info.product
in FreeBSD 7.2 and Slackware 13.0.
Slackware's output is much longer than FreeBSD's one.
Among devices lacking in FreeBSD and appearing in Slackware there are:
info.product = 'SynPS/2 Synaptics TouchPad' (string)
info.product = 'TPPS/2 IBM TrackPoint' (string)
So it seems it's impossible to configure IBM TrackPoint and Synaptics TouchPad with FreeBSD 7.2 and HAL.
Switching from Slackware Linux to FreeBSD can cause some problems:
1. Caused by user's inattention (see: xterm).
2. Caused by errors in programs (see: Midnight Commander).
3. Caused by differences between commands in GNU/Linux and *BSD (see: su and mount).
4. Caused by different fonts (see: Midnight Commander).
5. Caused by different methods of keyboard configuration (see: Polish keyboard and charset/lang).
6. Caused by different shells (see: auto-complete).
7. Caused by strange dependencies (see: third mouse button's paste function).
8. Caused by system's specific properties (see: freebsd-update).
9. Caused by relations between system-wide and X Window configuration (see: TouchPad scrolling).
10. Caused by poor HAL (see: TrackPoint and TouchPad).
Some of these problems can be solved but some can't -- some solutions are simply statements that the problem cannot be solved.
FreeBSD is different than Slackware Linux. On three FreeBSD installation CDs there aren't: GIMP, XMMS, Audacious, Xine, MPlayer, GQview or Thunderbird though there's Firefox. It seems that FreeBSD is first of all designed as server or firewall system -- Slackware Linux is better as desktop system.
If you'd like to know how FreeBSD community sees GNU/Linux look here: Linux vs. BSD = No real difference?
If you'd like to have a try FreeBSD you'll find after the installation of the system the valuable hints in ``FreeBSD Handbook'':
# less /usr/share/doc/handbook/book.txt