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Re: NetBSD in production

Hi folks,

I´d like to know who of you is running NetBSD in production. For example

-what kind of application/service
Mostly development of desktop applications (GNUstep) and desktop usage. Occasionaly file serving trhough FTP and as SSH machine.
-what platform (type, configuration)
-> x86-32 : laptop for daily usage running NetBSD 5.99 (just because release had a broken X11))
-> sparc32 with SMP, NetBSD 2.x, mostly headless usage from the laptop
-> x86-32 (VIA Vortex) mini-pc with passive cooling running NetBSD 4, either as a quiet workstation or mostly headless from the laptop
-> powerpc 32bit (macppc)

technically I also have a Mac 68k machine which is my first NetBSD box, but I have scsi problems and I need to try to reinstall it, but install is such a pain due to scsi errors from the installer. I keep it out of nostalgia.

-what branch
Stable, if I don't encounter a critical problem like broken X I found on my laptop.
-what pros do you see
A true "Unix", minimal, compact, trusted which serves me since 1996. The core system didn't "bloat" in the past years as other operating systems. It is a true BSD unix: it doesn't get in your way and just works. Resource friendly (I find that important even if laptops are now more powerful than my aging workstations). Easy to set up: ssh, telnet, rlogin, ftp, sftp... everything works out of the box, just comment out the lines and enable them! A uniform system: be it x86, sparc, ppc or 68: I login, use tcsh and you feel at home.

-what is missing / could be improved
hardware drivers: sometimes they are missing sometimes their support is shakey. For example, the ethernet card of my mini-pc is shakey and reports watchdog problems under heavy load. Not all video cards work or are supported as on linux (getting X11 on my PPC is a pain). I need to run a patched kernel or the SCSI hangs...

Sometimes there are quirks which I experience only on NetBSD (GNUMail doesn't work due to DNS problems, while it works on any other BSD and Linux platform I tried it on).

Then there are applications problems: linux binary compatibility and other stuff needed for a typical desktop usage which I find a necessary evil because the "world" outisde needs them:
-> skype
-> flash
-> wine for some windows apps which you can't even find as linux binary.

A long-time netbsd user...


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