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Re: *PLEASE READ* Re: Two NetBSDs: from Desktop NetBSD needs your help

On Sun, 8 Feb 2009, wrote:

2) There will be NO mandatory GUI - NetBSD is not Microsoft Windows

I'm not opposed to having Desktop NetBSD. It's just 2) which keeps bothering
me. The point of having Desktop NetBSD is to attract new and possibly
inexperienced users, right? So besides GUI you also need GUI utilities to
help those users setup their machine. Basically:
1) One must be able to install and setup NetBSD as we now do, and have a lean,
fast, stable, predictable and usable system.
2) Once you go the GUI utilities way, you have to make sure they work just
as well as doing the setup in the ksh-and-vi way *and* play nice it. So you
must have them functionally integrated with the base system, while keeping
them separated from it. That's the whole problem, I just don't believe you
can do both at the same time. Once you try that, sooner or later NetBSD
won't be lean, fast and predictable. It will become bloatware. Hell, I've
read INSTALL.txt many times and I don't see what makes it more difficult than
clicking flashy buttons. Besides, what desktop environment will you choose?
KDE? Gnome? Blackbox?

        If you read the wiki page I believe it states gnome as the
        preferred desktop environment. Others will be available,
        (after all, this is adding and extending packages in pkgsrc),
        but most of the netbsd desktop work at this point is going
        to be focussed on gnome.

I'm using both Linux and NetBSD. There's a huge difference between them.
Linux is great as a desktop system, but I wouldn't touch its guts with a
ten-feet pole. NetBSD is great as a system running on almost any hardware out
there and I *love* its (so far, more or less) clean code. NetBSD does the
portability stuff pretty well, and I think it should stick to it.

        Phase 1 just covers getting a working Desktop system.
        All of the flashy gui tools are deferred to Phase 2 - a
        very wise decision in my opinion as those will require care
        to ensure the integration is done well and does not impair
        the base system.

        Random question for the day:

            How much time has been wasted (duplicated time and time
            again) by technically literate people who just wanted
            a basic desktop system setup so they could work on
            something that actually interested them, like adding
            new pkgsrc packages or drivers for some item of USB
            hardware?, or who just wanted to run the same OS for
            development on their laptop as they were running on
            their servers?

        In my opinion, *that* is the correct primary target market
        of desktop netbsd - people who could set it up by hand,
        but *do not want to* as they have more useful things to
        do with their time.

        If people who are just learning want to come along for the
        ride, thats fine.

        By the way, thankyou for articulating your main concern -
        integrating desktop configuration could impair the base
        system, rather than just waving your hands and saying "Bad,

        I've added a note under 'Traditional NetBSD usage' on the
        Goals page.

        For anyone who missed it earlier - and there seem to be
        quite a few who are still ommenting without reading the
        pages - the base wiki page is at:

                David/absolute       -- No hype required --

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