What's NetBSD like

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Joined: Nov 24 2004
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Hi there everybody Smile
I have noticed this NetBSD OS has a version that works on 68k Macs, I would like to hear from any of you who have used it. How does it stand up to OS 7.5.5? It is for a SE/30 32 Mb Ram and 230 Mb HD...
Thanx for info Wink

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Eudimorphodon's picture
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Joined: Dec 21 2003
Posts: 1204
Re: What's NetBSD like

louis wrote:

How does it stand up to OS 7.5.5?

Asking how NetBSD "stands up" to OS 7.5.5 is sort of like asking how Christy Brinkley stands up to "The Blob" from the 50's horror movie. One's cute, lovable, and maybe just a bit slow, while the other is a massive, slow-moving (on an SE/30, anyway), and horrifying creature from an alien world.

In other words, there isn't any firm basis for comparison.

--Peace

aladds's picture
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Joined: Dec 26 2003
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Agreement

I agree it's not comparable to System 7, but since you asked…

NetBSD is like linux (but it's NOT linux), it's free and actually quite a good system to use. It is best used as a server, so it's probably not a great idea to use it on an SE/30. I have used it on my IIsi and it was very slow, but it worked. The network card didn't, however (it didn't work with A/UX either, mabye it hates anything but Mac OS?). Anyway, X didn't work for me and it may not work for you, but it only works in B+W video mode, bo you may be in luck. Otherwise it's a text-only black on white OS. But if you like that sort of thing, go ahead. It's nothing like System 7 to look at, unless you get X working, then you can probably run PearPC or something similar (it'll be slow though!)

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tmtomh's picture
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More Agreement

The problem with using Linux or BSD on a 68k Mac is that it won't work at anything close to an acceptable speed unless you restrict yourself to the command line - or, if you're using a fast '040 system, to the simplest of X Window managers.

For for regular desktop, non-server computing, it's useless on a 68k machine, unless you're content to word-process using a command-line text editor and do Web and email using ancient non-visual apps.

That said, I really like NetBSD. I find it easier to install on a 68k Mac than Linux.

Matt

moosemanmoo's picture
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Really? I don't like NetBSD a

Really? I don't like NetBSD at all. I used it on my Sparc and found Solaris vasty supereor.

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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 211
Learning Unix on the command line

NetBSD is fine, even on a stock SE/30 if you're patient, for learning Unix essentials. By essentials I mean that you're stuck on the command line and there will be no graphical environment; the last time I used NetBSD was on a fast IIci but the graphical environment was strictly black and white and s-l-o-w. But it depends what you are looking for... If you want to learn shell scripting or Perl or regular expressions, the SE/30 will be fine. However, you wouldn't want to use it in a production environment to update 5000 HTML files via a script in ten minutes.

As a server, my understanding is that Apache will deliver plain HTML very effectively, even on an SE/30 (more RAM, faster HDD will always help lots). This should not be surprising because the web was developed on the 68030 and its contemporaries. However, a 68030 (even a 50MHZ) is unlikely to provide a useable PHP environment so keep your expectations low.

Compiling? Unless it is a short program that you have written yourself, more or less forget it. Compiling a long program that takes hours to compile but fails fourteen lines from the end is too frustrating for NetBSD on an SE/30. Maintain your sanity and cross-compile your 68030 stuff on a faster computer.

Phil

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Joined: Nov 24 2004
Posts: 107
Many Thanx :)

Thank you all for your advice on this NetBSD, I think for my use I will stay with 7.5.5 although some of the things you mentioned are interesting... As I have 2 SE/30s I will have a go at trying it out Wink

catmistake's picture
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
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Don't be afraid of the command line

NetBSD is quite possibly THE most popular OS in the world right now for servers... I can't remember where I read it, but I think more web servers use it than any other OS.

It is vastly superior to linux, much more stable, more mature, runs on more platforms, and doesn't break itself regularly.

I run it on my SE/30, which is maxed out at 128MB, and it is just great. I don't think its all that slow, either, but I don't run a gui and I use it as a server. I have about 15 users that login from time to time to play games. It is COMPLETELY viable to run a web server (Apache) off of it, supports multiple sites, and no one would no what the hardware was (unless you got slashdotted, that crashes the even the fastest webservers). The internal processor runs about as fast as a 10BaseT network, so, considering the intenet is much slower, even with nice amounts of bandwidth, it works great (you know, for $25 worth of hardware).

An SE/30 with OS 7 is, I think, barely usable. A toy. But max out the RAM to 128MB and put NetBSD on it, and it literally becomes a workhorse, a possible money maker.

I think I should mention Basillisk, the excellent mac emulator, works with NetBSD, and there are precompiled binaries at NetBSD.org... most of the software is available precompiled... so don't worry about compiling... and with the emulator, you can always pretend that you're running OS 7, as the functionality/ look&feel is pretty much transparent.

(btw getting my network card to work with NetBSD or A/UX took some real esoteric, cryptic setups... but perserverence paid off... and I learned stuff... like how to compile a new kernel, etc.)

NetBSD is a REAL BSD UNIX implementation, just like Darwin and Solaris (not like linux, I don't think), so it feels very similar to the command line in OS X.

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Re: Don't be afraid of the command line

catmistake wrote:

NetBSD is quite possibly THE most popular OS in the world right now for servers... I can't remember where I read it, but I think more web servers use it than any other OS.

NetBSD is a fine OS, don't get me wrong, but that's complete, utter hokum.

I'd suggest going to Netcraft and picking through their survey results.

http://news.netcraft.com/archives/web_server_survey.html

The "Big Three" are Linux, Windows, and FreeBSD, in that order. (With Solaris hanging onto a presence in corporate environments.) Even if every "other" in the world were NetBSD and not identified as such they still wouldn't add up to either Windows or Linux's share.

Evangelizing your favorite OS is fine, but do try to keep your arguments based in reality.

--Peace

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Joined: Dec 20 2003
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Sparc10 question - hop over to topic #6488

Not wanting to highjack this thread, I created a new topic here.

dan k

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