A new Lisp-based OS that hearkens back to the old days of comprehensible computers

Liam Proven lproven at gmail.com
Sat Oct 3 10:40:09 CDT 2015

Don't top-quote!

On 1 October 2015 at 16:48, Sean Caron <scaron at umich.edu> wrote:
> Who knew? Not me :O


But my point was, _yes_, there _are_ lots of *BSD distributions. You
not knowing about them doesn't change that!

> But those are all kind of "piddly" (sorry) ...

Not really, no. PC-BSD is over a decade old and is quite popular, for
instance. I also suspect that some of the firewall distros are
widely-used, but they're like the old Linux-based SmoothWall: get it
right, they're close to fit-and-forget, so you see little to no noise
online of the form of "how do I do X?" because you don't do anything
with them.

> I don't
> think they have much "mindshare" or very many actual installations compared
> to the top-line FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD ...

[[citation needed]]

Is this because you hadn't heard of them?

> and those BSD repackagers
> don't have so much potential influence to argue over the basic direction of
> *BSD, versus say, Red Hat might have with Linux ...

RH is not Linux.

You know I worked for RH until last year, right?

Nobody has that much control over Linux as a whole. The small-dev-team
thing is part of the appeal of *BSD for many.

But some of the distros introduce their own packaging formats and so
on. Yes, they are significantly different.

I'm not trying to be offensive, Sean, it just seems like you don't
know much about this but aren't prepared to back down and admit that.

> I would consider some like m0n0wall and pfSense exceptions because the goal
> of the project is really to provide a pre-rolled security appliance rather
> than an OS distribution proper ... same reason I wouldn't call PIAF a Linux
> distribution, just a pre-rolled Asterisk appliance.

Depends. As I said, I think the changes in the config-file structure
of m0n0wall are so big and drastic that it definitely counts as a
significantly different project.

Another sort-of related project springs to mind:

Minix 3.

Minix 3 is a whole new OS, an actual honest-to-hypothetical-deity FOSS
microkernel Unix-compatible OS. And it is gradually importing much of
the NetBSD userland, piece by piece. So in time, Minix 3 will be very
BSD-like, but with a genuinely new type of kernel. That's radical and
arguably makes it a member of the BSD family.

Liam Proven • Profile: http://lproven.livejournal.com/profile
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