[TUHS] FreeBSD behind the times? (was: Favorite unix design principles?)

Dave Horsfall dave at horsfall.org
Thu Feb 4 15:43:55 AEST 2021

On Sat, 30 Jan 2021, Larry McVoy wrote:

[ Usual insightful...  insights ]

> If you like ZFS you don't understand operating systems design.  I do.


> Jeff Bonwick was a stats student at Stanford when he took my OS class, I 
> convinced him to come to Sun.  Bill Moore worked for me.  That's the two 
> main ZFS guys and I thought I had taught them well but they let me down.

{ ... ]

There's no way that I'd use ZFS; lose a block in an ordinary file, well, 
you now have a hole (but not in the file-system sense); lose a block in a 
compressed system, well...

Or perhaps I'm becoming conservative in my old age; I remember when I once 
rewrote utilities that when writing a zero block merely did a seek instead 
(or something like that; you had to remember to actually write out the 
last block).  I wouldn't try it these days, as Unix file systems were 
simple back then.

[ ... ]

> Let's try it this way.  Get back to me when you can show me 40 people 
> who have installed FreeBSD on their own, with no help.  In the same 
> time, I can show you 40,000 people who have installed Linux on their 
> own, with no help.  Probably 400,000.

Well, I did (but without ZFS) on several boxes, with zero help.  Having
had SunOS experience (4.4 was the best) helped :-)

I can't stand Penguin/OS; it looks too much like Windoze for my liking
(and does its best to be almost-Unix-but-not-quite).

-- Dave, a grey-beard

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