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Free Software With Free Source Code

This is

Why buy virus prone, binary software ?
Better use free software checkable with sources !

Index of External Links To Free Software

Local On Site/Page Index

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Escape Microsoft ! - Here's How

You could run your old MS programs on emulators ( ReWind & Wine VMware etc), but that isn't Really escaping Microsoft (ie M$ viruses will still run Break completely free. Names of some software that caters to similar requirements to M$ products (not all software checked, presumably mostly not key clone compatibility).
Functional Description M$ Name FreeBSD /usr/ports/
Database Access 200 in databases/
Editor Word
190 in editors/, inc: Open Office, KDE Office, AbiWord, StarWriter etc
Presentation Manager (projector / (beamer)) PowerPoint
editors/impress (a module within editors/openoffice), editors/koffice-kde3 (1 module within), KDE can 'display' and 'edit' misc/ewipe, misc/magicpoint, print/axpoint, textproc/xlhtml (a converter). x11/oooqs (quick launcher for Open Office) OO can 'display' and 'edit' x
Spread Sheet Excel gnumeric spreadsheet, databases/p5-DBD-Excel textproc/p5-Spreadsheet-ParseExcel textproc/p5-Spreadsheet-WriteExcel textproc/ruby-spreadsheet-excel, editors/openoffice (module =Calc), editors/koffice-kde3 (1 module within)
Mailer Outlook & Outlook Express To convert .pst files to Unix mbox format: /usr/ports/mail/libpst uses projects/ ol2mbox/ with executable: bin/readpst. See also: gmail/ gmailapps.htm
? .rtf, .wmv ?
Anti Virus ? Don't need any! (though cross tools on BSD can protect MS clients, by vetting the mail stream).
Linux Equivalent Project Another web site with a bigger table than the above, Nearly all the tools there will run on BSD too I expect.


  • Magicpoint is great for a Unix person familiar with a text editor, to create presentations, but doesn't have a click & fumble composer tool.
  • For click & fumble, try OpenOffice.
  • OpenOffice is better at importing Microsoft's proprietary file formats . [than KDE Office] It can automatically read MS Word mail eg from Exmh via Metamail (slow to start of course as Big), .
  • OpenOffice Impress is extremely compatible with MS PowerPoint, including the audio, wipes and other "frills" .
    Open Impress is part of Open Office
Demos / Tech Talks in Munich

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Is Free Unix Good For Everyone ?

Many but not all !
  • UNIX is not best choice for lazy technophobes- ;-).
  • Many rather clueless people pay Microsoft very heavily to support a dumb click & fumble approach. Some then feel sick when asking BSD users : "What, yours is Free, with No viruses & No crashes ? How come we pay for crashes & virus infections ?"
  • BSD requires no purchase price, just that users be prepared to sometimes read documentation & attempt to think logically.
  • Ported packages, tens of thousands of packages inc. many window managers gives a wide choice of desktops, (but perhaps not all classes of computer users would benefit from BSD, (neither would BSD benefit from everything being dumbed down for a minority of hopeless losers. MickeySoft Inc is welcome to keep the most incompetent users).
  • If you don't know much about Unix:
    • "Introduction to Unix" Course notes by Frank G. Fiamingo, Linda DeBula, and Linda Condron updated by Rob Funk
      Copy @ 2009.06.04: Host not found: http:// wks/ unix_course/ intro-1.html
      Dead link: http:// unix_course/ unix.html
      Or use a search engine for others & similar.
    • content/ common-unix-commands.aspx
  • Ask a friend for a demo. There's lots of user groups round the world. We have a BSD group in Munich

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Apologies - Page is ragged below here, needs sorting later.

  • NetBSD LiveKey "a non-destructive NetBSD/i386 on USB stick. It is composed of a tarball or zipfile to be uncompressed on an USB key without changing the original Filesystem (usually VFAT). You will probably need about 256MB RAM to run the key smoothly."
  • /bootable_freesbie_dvd/FreeSBIE-2.0.1-RELEASE.iso Live CD based on FreeBSD-? based on FreeBSD 6.2-RELEASE
  • Live DVD 1.2 Release based on FreeBSD 6.1.
No one pays me to make this a perfect page, so dig about. Or if you want my professional advice you'r welcome to purchase the necessary time from logo

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daemon logo The BSDs are similar FREE Unix Operating Systems, with some or all of:

  • tens of thousands of packages
  • Full free binary & source code,
  • Running on PCs + Alpha Amiga Arm32 Atari Hp300 Mac x68k PC532 Pmax Sparc Sun3 & Vax,
  • ISDN & modem & sound support,
  • Commercial packages available, such as Word Perfect [Domain exists but host name does not] (35M) & Starwriter.
Linux is a somewhat more distant relative. The BSDs & Linux co-operate & share some sources smiley face icon Some of the differences between the systems are noted below There are lots of variants, such as SUSE, Red Hat, Slackware, Caldera etc, but Debian is vendor independent.

FREE ! So shops etc find it hard to add their commission, & many magazines are loath to give us fair comparison, as we pay them no advertising fees. That's why you don't hear us hyped as `Flavour of the year software' - because we take none of Your Money from you in license fees, to later spend on promoting our software back to you again.

STABLE: Just locally, some FreeBSD PC Unix server systems have been running here in Munich over a year. Can you say the same about your commercially purchased Microsoft servers ?
(FreeBSD has also confusingly used the word `stable' as a misnomer to describe a collection of CVS (Code Versioning System) source tags that provide for changing code based on a stable API (application Programming Interface) where first priority is Not stability (as in reliability. For maximum stability as in reliability, install a Release.)

HIGH PERFORMANCE: Some of the hardest working sites on the internet are FreeBSD powered, see for current examples inc. Yahoo etc


  • When you have a problem: You'r sufficiently computer literate, & can overcome inherent laziness, & not just desperately mouse click yourself into a stupor & give up, or whine about user unfriendly software .... but are actually prepared to occasionally educate yourself, & read & understand a manual.
  • If you want to take more control over your computer, & escape from a world of expensive commercial licences, bootleggers, and binaries that can't be checked against public sources for viruses.

YOU DO NOT NEED TO BE A PROGRAMMER Many people merely use it, & contribute no money or effort in return, but if you prefer to help, now or later, you'r welcome to contribute time creating or translating docs. & web info, or giving / lending / purchasing new hardware for the development teams. Contributing programmers are of course particularly welcome.

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FreeBSD: The Unix system Julian H. Stacey prefers.

Coms Monitoring Software

Haven't checked if all of this runs on BSD but I bet most do, (forwarded to me by np@)
      On Thu, May 25, 2006 at 01:23:27PM -0500, Alex Stade wrote:
      > Thanks to all who replied. I received 26 replies, so I am opting to not
      > list your names - but thank you all!
      > Overwhelmingly, Nagios is recommended for monitoring and notification.
      > For trend analysis about 60% of you recommend Cacti. Very few suggested
      > commercial solutions, which to me suggests that there really isn't much
      > good software out there for sale.
      > We're already using Nagios in-house, so we'll look at keeping it around.
      >   However, the suggestion of Cacti was great, so we'll certainly look at
      > that as well.
      > The software packages that you mentioned were;
      > Nagios,
      > Cacti,
      > Big Brother,,
      > Big Sister,
      > Zabbix,
      > Cricket,
      > ORCA,
      > ProIT Monitoring, (sparc only)
      > Munin,
      > GroundWork Monitor,
      > Lund MetaView,
      > OpenNMS,
      > Again, thank you all and if I neglected to mention a software package or
      >   seemingly omitted your advice, I apologise.
      > -Alex
      > _______________________________________________
      > sunmanagers mailing list

Other Operating Systems

Like all free operating systems, without commercial constraints to hinder technology transfer, FreeBSD shares its best parts with others, & copies good bits from others. Some developers even support their continuing developments on multiple operating systems. As a partial example FreeBSD includes some optional kernel modules & tools from the GNU collection of the FSF (Free Software Foundation) , some kernel (VM ?) code from Mach, some drivers & tools from NetBSD, & emulators from Linux

FreeBSD developers `Share & Enjoy' free source code smiley face icon with these operating systems :

  • 386BSD: Our ancestral OS, itself based on BSD4.3.
    386BSD was an impressive achievement by Bill Jollitz, a CD-ROM was eventually released, but as what at least once appeared a largely one man project, I'm not sure how active 386BSD is, consult newsgroups comp.os.386bsd.* to find out.
  • FreeBSD Very popular with Internet Service Providers in Germany & elsewhere.
  • NetBSD has a similar initial BSD heritage to FreeBSD; NetBSD offers the BSD /usr/src tree ported to a wide variety of hardware (not just Intel 86 type hardware), NetBSD doesn't offer the wide range of ported packages that FreeBSD does. There are other differences, but many similarities too, as both are BSD 4.4 derivatives. Their strong point is that NetBSD supports lots of architectures (50 or so I think, end of 2004). Their CVS tree has finally been released too. (FreeBSD & OpenBSD have always had their CVS available)
  • OpenBSD is an offshoot from NetBSD. I heard CVS write access is (or was ?) not restricted.
  • Linux is rather less similar, essentially a Unix rewrite from scratch, not to BSD norms, supposedly more of a System-5 flavour, (written by Linus Torvalds with about 8 subsequent variants). Very popular in Germany with end users, due to the vendors of 30 pack floppies, in the pre cdrom era.
    Free Software Foundation's Richard Stallman states Linux comprises a kernel from Linus Torvalds, & Dead Link: various programs from elsewhere, the largest percentage being from FSF
  • Mach: Supports a micro kernel & multiple servers, including a Unix Server.
  • Hurd: The kernel-in-progress from the Free Software Foundation Don't know if this didn't get obviated by Linux ?
Other Op Systems of interest include:
  • Dead Link BSD/OS 4.4BSD with Commercial vendor support Old name: BSD386.
  • BSD/OS 3.1 (@ 10.1999) A commercial BSD.
  • SCO binaries are available free for Dead link " Products/ openind.html" personal non commercial use.
    It's not BSD, & source is not available, but Santa Cruz give away SCO Unix binaries for non commercial use. A CD version costs $20. The free licence is/was via Dead Link " Company/ Announce/ p081996e.htm"> Company/ Announce/ p081996e.htm
    Having given them a free plug, I feel it fair to also note that though SCO is the market leader in PC binary Unix sales, It's Unix base version is the oldest, merely with new extensions on top, & it's more time consuming to program on than other Unixes, & without the free Skunkware additional CD, it's horrible, when coming from a rich free source environment.

    They've also now got a bad name in the free software community. Impression is they're becoming a firm of solicitors & patent lawyers, with less interest in programming.

  • Sun Solaris Free
    Was announced May 1997, for personal use I think, $100 copying charge or free with other orders. (A USA initiative I believe, no Sun staff I know of here in Munich seems to have heard of it.) No source include. I've read posts referring to papers saying Solaris is OK under light load, but that FreeBSD performs much better than Solaris under heavy load.
  • Old PDP Unix Source Cheap ($100 or free for students)
    for V6, V7, PWB etc, from Dead Link PDP Unix Preservation Society

Occasionally one encounters strident advocacy of Free Versus NetBSD, or Linux versus *-BSD etc: they're all good, a delight to have free source for, & from an X-Windows users top level perspective, if you'r running an XDM + FVWM session, restricted to just Netscape & IRC, in an `Internet Cafe' environment, you won't even be able to tell which Op. Sys you are running !

BSD Related Systems

  • Information on BSD 4.* and Dead Link BSD-info/ BSD.html BSD Related systems, especially the free flavours of BSD.
  • Dead Link " pub/ comp/ os/ bsd/ cracauer/ netbsd-vs-freebsd.german.html" A comparison "Ein kleiner NetBSD / FreeBSD - Vergleich" German CT Magazin 1997, Heft (Volume) 4, Seite (Page) 368; by Andreas Klemm & Lars Koeller. also in German on CT(ref not checked) web site.
  • Unix Training Course
  • Linux Applications database for BSD Unix systems. This database has been generalised to include ALL Unix applications.

Unix Comparison with NT In depth article with lots of URLs by John Kirch.

Understanding the Windows EAL4 Evaluation

Indexes to Unixes


Apart from the 3 BSDs & all the Linuxes, there's loads of other public source projects too, such as FSF, X-Consortium, XFree86, KDE etc, here's one or two new ones:
  • OpenOffice sponsored by Sun, Logo for Star Office on front page.

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Further Reading

  • BSD Web Magazines:
  • Books
    • Book "The Complete FreeBSD" Author Greg Lehey 2nd Ed. 1700 pages, in English, (available in Germany for DM 59.9 inc. UPS postage from Lehmanns ISBN 1-57176-216-7. Price in Pele Dec. 2000: DM 166 inc 4.0 CDs (OpenBSD V2.7 2 CD set with no book was DM 98)

      An online version now available.

    • Book "FreeBSD: An Open-Source Operating System for Your Personal Computer, Second Edition (with CD-ROM)" Author Annelise Anderson ISBN: 0971204519

      An online version now available as out of print http ftp .

    • BSD Buch In Deutsch: "BSD mit Methode" Available at Hugendubel am Stachus in Munich Germany.
    • doc/ en_US.ISO8859-1/ books/
  • German 45 Pages: FreeBSD Die Ersten Schritte - K. Heuer
  • The Unix Heritage Society
  • General Magazines
  • Index of RFC standards (on which the Internet is based).
  • Software Patents Damage Society
  • Next chunk belongs somewhere else & is just parked here for now, till I can figure where to park it & look into it.:
    Presentation File Format Alternatives
    PowerPoint contains     text, Bezier curves/Fills and simple animations.
    Postscript can display  text, Bezier curves/Fills       3%/GSView
    Flash can display       text, Bezier curves/Fills and complex animations.
    Office Draw         text, Bezier curves/Fills and simple animations 15%/Office
    SVG can display     text, Bezier curves/Fills and complex animations.
       SVG is W3C and Open source and is stored as text.
  • bsd/ BSD embedded on flash. 02/15/2015 After 12 years, the m0n0wall project has officially ended.

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2016-01: How to run Microsoft Internet Explorer on NetBSD? - a discussion on emulators (that FreeBSD has too)
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