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Netbooting and Diskless Workstations with FreeBSD

michael posted about 10 years ago | from the keeping-the-users-from-messing-things-up dept.

BSD 23

sootman writes "O'Reilly's ONLamp site has a neat two-part series on building a netboot server and diskless workstations with FreeBSD. Nothing too earthshaking but it's always an interesting topic and it's nice to see a new writeup on it every so often."

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DEATH (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10538325)

Oh, trolly... not again. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10539177)

Re:Oh, trolly... not again. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10541870)

just goes to show there are some stupid sysadmins who think putting a dead operating system on a machine is a good idea!

Re:Oh, trolly... not again. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10543352)

Yeah... and these weird people also think it's more reliable than linux! [] Go figure. :-)

Re:Oh, trolly... not again. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10542030)

Netcraft confirms: FreeBSD is the top choice of webmasters hosting child pornography sites!

Re:Oh, trolly... not again. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10543372)

Come on, trolly... don't be too harsh. You know, FreeBSD admins usually *love* Linux. No, no: they *love* it. Really. :-) []

(ehm... disclaimer: I think the pic is funny... for kindof 2 seconds. As a FreeBSD user, I think the author of that not-so-useful web site is on the same level of our troll, here... :)

Great stuff (5, Informative)

ulib (816651) | about 10 years ago | (#10539246)

... and here [] 's a handy collection of all BSD-related articles published on onlamp. :)
(I'm posting it because the link is not obvious).

Re:Great stuff (1)

molnarcs (675885) | about 10 years ago | (#10539936)

Thanks for the link. Onlamp is one of the best FreeBSD related sites. I always find their writings (interviews, guides, articles) very helpful. They are also good readings for those who haven't tried, but are curious about FreeBSD.

Re:Great stuff (0, Troll)

Junichiro Koizumi (803690) | about 10 years ago | (#10542813)

The 'L' in LAMP doesn't stand for FreeBSD. They only post BSD related stuff as a sick kind of joke for the old-timers who remember when that stuff was still relevant.

Re:Great stuff (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10543396)

They had to call it "lamp" to appeal to the masses. Then they realized that to attract competent users as well, they had to host and maintain a rich BSD section.

Jeez... you bothered to create fake accounts? Trolly you *are* a freak!.. :-O

Re:Great stuff (1)

j3ll0 (777603) | about 10 years ago | (#10554315)

Thanks for the link....I don't know how I haven't found that site before...


Yes, but... (1, Troll)

repruhsent (672799) | about 10 years ago | (#10542538)

...does it run Linux?

Linuxux. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10543337)

Read the subject loudly. You'll understand (probably).

Diskless boot for OpenBSD (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10543331)

There is also this [] for OpenBSD. It is intended for flash booting, but with PXE it can be used to boot diskless systems too.

Funny that this topic comes along... (4, Interesting)

CoolVibe (11466) | about 10 years ago | (#10543859)

On the dragonflybsd mailing lists [] there's a big thread about using PXEboot to netboot the new installer [] so machines without spindles or floppies can install dragonflybsd. Lots of info on how to set up DHCP for booting pxe-enabled machines. Might also be worth checking out.

Swiftboat Veterans for *BSD Truth (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10548037)

Yet another sickening blow has struck what's left of the *BSD community, as a soon-to-be-released report by the independent Commision for Technology Management (CTM) after a year-long study has concluded: *BSD is already dead. Here are some of the commission's findings:

Fact: the *BSDs have balkanized yet again. There are now no less than twelve separate, competing *BSD projects, each of which has introduced fundamental incompatibilities with the other *BSDs, and frequently with Unix standards. Average number of developers in each project: fewer than five. Average number of users per project: there are no definitive numbers, but reports show that all projects are on the decline.

Fact: There are almost no FreeBSD developers left, and its use, according to Netcraft, is down to a sadly crippled .005% of internet servers. A recent attempt at a face-to-face summit in Boulder, Colorado culminated in an out-and-out fistfight between core developers, reportedly over code commenting formats (tabs vs. spaces). Hotel security guards broke up the melee and banned the participants from the hotel. Two of the developers were hospitalized, and one continues to have his jaw wired shut.

Fact: will not include support *BSD. The newly formed group believes that the *BSDs have strayed too far from Unix standards and have become too difficult to support along with Linux and Solaris x86. "It's too much trouble," said one anonymous developer. "If they want to make their own standards, let them doing the porting for us."

Fact: DragonflyBSD, yet another offshoot of the beleaguered FreeBSD "project", is already collapsing under the weight of internal power struggles and in-fighting. "They haven't done a single decent release," notes Mark Baron, an industry watcher and columnist. "Their mailing lists read like an online version of a Jerry Springer episode, complete with food fights, swearing, name-calling, and chair-throwing." Netcraft reports that DragonflyBSD is run on exactly 0% of internet servers.

Fact: NetBSD, which claims to focus on portability (whatever that is supposed to mean), is slow, and cannot take advantage of multiple CPUs. "That about drove the last nail in the coffin for BSD use here," said Michael Curry, CTO of "We took our NetBSD boxes out to the backyard and shot them in the head. We're much happier running Linux."

Fact: *BSD has no support from the media. Number of Linux magazines available at bookstores: 5 (Linux Journal, Linux World, Linux Developer, Linux Format, Linux User). Number of available *BSD magazines: 0. Current count of Linux-oriented technical books: 1071. Current count of *BSD books: 6.

Fact: Many user-level applications will no longer work under *BSD, and no one is working to change this. The GIMP, a Photoshop-like application, has not worked at all under *BSD since version 1.1 (sorry, too much trouble for such a small base, developers have said). OpenOffice, a Microsoft Office clone, has never worked under *BSD and never will. ("Why would we bother?" said developer Steven Andrews, an OpenOffice team lead.)

Fact: servers running OpenBSD, which claims to focus on security, are frequently compromised. According to Jim Markham, editor of the online security forum SecurityWatch, the few OpenBSD servers that exist on the internet have become a joke among the hacker community. "They make a game out of it," he says. "(OpenBSD leader) Theo [de Raadt] will scramble to make a new patch to fix one problem, and they've already compromised a bunch of boxes with a different exploit."

With these incontroverible facts staring (what's left of) the *BSD community in the face, they can only draw one conclusion: *BSD is already dead.

BSD == good (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10548343)

It is becoming more and more obvious that FreeBSD is the best Linux distribution out there. Why don't more people use it, and why don't we hear more about it in the media?

err... the best what? [Re:BSD == good] (5, Informative)

ulib (816651) | about 10 years ago | (#10549714)

... I'm gonna be kind, even if sb who calls FreeBSD a "Linux distribution" wouldn't really deserve it. ;-)

a) FreeBSD is Berkeley Unix, Linux is a Unix-clone. They look similar to the average user, but deep inside they're two quite different things.

b) the media tend to identify Open Source OS's with Linux because of the community hype - GNU & Linux are about politics as well, thus they attract a wider range of people. BSD is a purely technical and academical thing. These different commitments are well reflected in the 2 licenses: BSD [] (much simpler and less restrictive) and GPL [] (an anti-proprietary political manifesto).

c) FreeBSD is quite widely used and, notwithstanding the lack of hype, its user base is growing pretty fast.

Re:err... the best what? [Re:BSD == good] (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10593575)

"... I'm gonna be kind"


Am I the only one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10548492)

....who read that as "dickless workstations"?

Re:Am I the only one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10549520)

Don't worry, it's quite usual for Linux users to have inferiority complexes. You're not alone by any means. Cheer up! :-)

word.. (1)

comet69 (198367) | more than 9 years ago | (#10645428)

sounds sweet.. i love the diskless technology.. there were some great Debian packages that made diskless booting a sinch.. simple NFS booting.. i can imagine it working much better with FBSD..

i wonder if anyone has worked on a virtual architecture for diskless clutering applications? to me, besides saving a decent amount on hard drives, the only true advantage to diskless booting, is utilizing the theory of clustering, using things like load balancing..
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