FreeBSD Novice related


I am on Day # 2 with about 16 hours of usage of the updated version of TrueOS ( Lumina 1.2.1, etc ) I am telling everybody I know in the Linux community how cool this is and all I get is yawns. They say to just stick with Ubuntu MATE, especially since I am a novice. So I guess the question is or are, how do you all tell people how great TrueOS is. What software do you like to run on TrueOS. I am having fun playing Palapeli ( puzzle ), and Aisleriot. Are there any good Qt-based games or BSD specific games. I have loaded a bunch, but have not tried them yet.

I guess my next question is why do you use the Insight File Manager, when there are already 10 popular file managers ? How do I know I have the latest version of Insight, and what version is it ? Is it only for TrueOS ?

Anybody have an TrueOS tips for a novice ? Like what Graphics Card should I purchase ? Or what CPU works
best, or what memory works best ? Or what motherboard works best ? etc.


Glad that you’re liking TrueOS so far. My answers to your questions are based on my experience with using FreeBSD as a desktop at home for a long time and what I use it for (software development, remote access back to work). Others may (will) tell you different.
Software: minimal. A web browser (lean toward Firefox/Qupzilla over Chrome), email client (I’ve finally graduated away from Alpine to Claws), LibreOffice, GnuCash (got to keep track of how the money gets spent), editors (emacs if I’m spending lots of time in code, vi for short stuff). Games are either mahjongg or solitare (I’m not a gamer), that’s about it.

Hardware: whatever you want/can afford. I’ve always been partial to Gigabyte motherboards, name brand memory (GSkill, Corsair, Kingston), CPU either Intel or AMD. Graphics cards: Nvidia is probably the better choice at the moment (pick a price range for your performance).

Insight FileManager: There are 10 or 20 popular Desktop environments/window managers, so why Lumina? I’m guessing Lumina was to scratch an itch the developers had. It’s BSD license instead of GPL/LGPL which is a huge thing, it doesn’t take a lot of resources to run, it was designed to not need a whole lot of other libraries (you can get more at the project webpage). So why Insight? Because they wanted a file manager that followed the same principles as Lumina. And once you have an idea (requirements) it’s easy to write code.


While I am a TrueOS developer (and creator of Lumina), I still use it for 99% of my computing needs (the other 1% is a Windows partition on my home desktop that I use when I get the itch to play games every 6 months or so).
As referenced, I don’t really have a ton of time to play games (even on TrueOS), but the nature of open-source projects/games is that they can be built/run on almost any operating system - so most of the games you will find on FreeBSD/TrueOS are the same ones available on Linux. There might be a few BSD-specific games out there, but I am just not aware of any offhand.

As for the Insight file manager, it will always be “up to date” on TrueOS, since the binary name for it is “lumina-fm”… :wink:
The reason I made it in the first place was because of dependencies/functionality (as @mer suggested). Almost all the graphical files managers on FreeBSD that I tested had a couple serious flaws:

  1. Dependencies: Other FM’s would “require” hundreds of megabytes of random Linux libraries which caused interesting conflict resolution issues or sucked in 90% of the huge desktop environments like GNOME3 or KDE. If we were going to install a file manager by default on TrueOS, we needed something that was based purely on Qt5 (just as all the other TrueOS tools were) and we just could not find anything out there that fit that requirement.
  2. Functionality: Along with all the Linux-lib dependencies of the other file managers, most of them came with all sorts of strange runtime dependencies which (a) did not work on FreeBSD, (b) required a bunch of special root-level daemons to be running, or © required a ton of manual CLI configuration before they would become semi-functional. This was just unacceptable for TrueOS, since FreeBSD support/usage is kind of required… :wink:

Note that these concerns are not addressing some of the minimal file managers out there like midnight commander or ncurses-based apps. Most of those we had to instantly ignore because they are focused toward advanced users or are CLI-based. We need TrueOS utilities to be easily used by people of any computer skill level.


I use PC-BSD as my main computer 100% of the time, even when I have to do stuff that requires Windows, and won’t work on wine the Windows computer I’m running is just a Virtual Machine inside of PC-BSD. At work I replaced my windows 7 computer with PCBSD and I use PCBSD at work all day.

If it’s something I’m forced to use at work that requires windows, I use a VM inside of PCBSD, if it’s something that I want and is not available for BSD I just won’t buy that product or look for an alternative. I use Libre Office at work because I’m not forced to use word so I use the alternative (some people act weird when they get ODT’s and I just don’t care, they’ve gotten used to it).

There are some programs that are required that I use that were built using Visual Basic and heavily dependent on Windows and will not work on Wine, those are the ones I use the Windows VM in VirtualBox for.

As far as games, I don’t play any on a computer because I have a PS3 and have recently just purchased the PS4. Which I regret, the PS4 is the worst piece of garbage I have ever wasted money on.

I haven’t quite made the jump to TrueOS yet, but It’s something I have been planning to do. So I can’t really say anything about what I tell my friends about it.

However when it comes to PCBSD I always tell them, this O.S. works flawlessly, it’s easy to use, it does everything I need it to do, I love the community and I can get support from very knowledgeable people that contribute to the community for no other reason than their love of BSD (Unix) and it’s always cool to see people that passionate about something.

And it’s just a great O.S. all around, that works for me. Might not work for everybody, but it does for me. So I’ll keep using it, and you can use whatever you want I’m just saying for me… This O.S. works better than any other O.S. out there.

And for that I want to say… . Thank you to all the TrueOS devs but a special thank you to the Moore brothers.

Ken, thank you once again for finally making a decent DE that was specifically designed with BSD in mind and not Linux.


I use TrueOS 100% of the time (at the moment). Like most people around here I have been using all sorts of operating systems in the past.

I have been using Linux ever since before finishing university in the 90s (RedHat and Debian). So, I got my hands dirty. I also maintain a few ArchLinux packages (that also makes hands dirty) and will try to maintain at least one port if my time allows…

I like BSD systems because they have my command line utilities I have known to love over the years. There are also some small details such as calendar utility that I have been using on Debian since the day one. It is the small, simple things true to Unix philosophy. You can adjust power consumption on your laptop to your liking. You can do stupid things to - but that is BSD Unix for you… :slight_smile:

I run Thunderbird (about to install mutt with offline imap), some sort of office (LibreOffice does the trick). As far as games go, I have bsdgames and bsdtris installed (more to come). I tend to keep the things reasonably BSD-centric. I use irssi for irc chat. OwnCloud to synchronise/back up files on my server. I used Alpine in the past (that brings memories of pine email program from the 90s).

If there is enough interest I can share my system tune settings for my laptop. I think I managed to squeeze more power out of my battery - but we always learn more things when we use BSD systems… :slight_smile: I am always happy to be corrected…




Yes, please. A TrueOS Desktop tuning topic will be nice.


… A TrueOS Desktop tuning topic will be nice.

As offered/suggested:

Resources for Newbies

FreeBSD Status Reports – David, as you’re interested in advocacy I should draw attention to the report from The FreeBSD Foundation.

FreeBSD 12.0-CURRENT Hardware Notes :arrow_forward: 2. Supported Processors and System Boards

… What does FreeBSD team do …

The FreeBSD Project :arrow_forward: Get FreeBSD :arrow_forward: Release Engineering :arrow_forward: Release Engineering Documentation :arrow_forward: FreeBSD Release Engineering

… partially outdated …

Still, that gives you an idea of where to look.

Some of what’s developed and discovered by TrueOS is fed upstream to FreeBSD. From one project to another – and vice versa, so the FreeBSD Advocacy Project describes TrueOS as downstream.

If you have not already done so, I highly recommend joining the TrueOS chat rooms at – they are a great way to learn about what’s done by, and for, the project.