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NetBSD as first introduction to BSD and generic book recommendation on basic Unix concepts to learn?

Hi there,

I am new here. I'm interested in BSD in general,
not exactly sure yet which will suit me best (heck,
I guess I'll simply have to try more), but at this
moment I feel a general inclination to NetBSD, not
only because it runs on toasters as well (though,
that's cool), but that this feature can translate
to it runs on more commodity hardware (that means
amd64 these days) with less problems.

FreeBSD is the most popular BSD by the numbers and
so is the one most people gets introduced to BSD in
general, has the most numerous and most awesome
books written for and about (probably? I guess) but
if it already starts with the question - will it
run on my hardware? - and you already solved this
question, then going with NetBSD would mean one
less problem to worry about. (Oh, and now I'm in
the market of a new, modern laptop and I don't want
to start with stupid compromises already.)

But here' the rub:

The guide says ( )

"This guide is not a Unix tutorial: basic knowledge
of some concepts and tools is assumed. You should
know, for example, what a file and a directory are,
and how to use an editor. There are plenty of books
explaining basic Unix and operating system
concepts, and you should consult one if you need
more background information. It is better to choose
a general book and avoid titles like “Learning
Unix-XYZ, version in 10 days”, but this is
a matter of personal taste."

OK, I think I can handle the matter in the first
sentence with my only background being a Windows
user, but still, I might prefer to have another,
more general purpose book teaching me on Unix
concepts. Which do you recommend to study along?

There are not many books on NetBSD in particular,
if I write 'NetBSD' into the search field of
Amazon, I have found zero books focused on it.

Best selling author of Absolute FreeBSD, Absolute
OpenBSD (awesome books) Michael W Lucas says about

"I’ve also wanted to write a NetBSD book for, oh,
about ten years now. It appears that this isn’t
commercially viable for a mainstream publisher.
Recent experiments in self-publishing have made me
ponder doing this on my own, however. But that will
have to wait until the current projects are

I am agnostic yet regarding I want the OS for
desktop, server or firewall, etc. use (more the
latter than the former, though), but first and in
general: learning. Michael suggests to install all
components including desktop while learning and fully immerse yourself in it.

Ultimately, learning about BSD is installing it on
your hardware and tinkering with it; sadly I seem
to have chosen the one with the least amount of
accessible documentation. :(

Or, should I really start with FreeBSD (and the hardware issues)?

Ps. This list uses Majordomo, which does not support vacation hold mail:
So why?

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