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    Interesting, but these suggestions are very opinionated/irreverent, or outright misinformed. (why buy a junky low end sound card when HD Audio is basically supported by everything in the known universe?)

    I’ve never been impressed with these kinds of guides, because they either involve you to cargo cult ceremonies involving crap like Xorg.conf, or pass off the author’s opinions and delusions as objective facts. (OpenBSD on the desktop is pretty easy; install, set up APM; pkg_add gnome firefox; do what gnome says… done)

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      Hey calvin, thanks for the tip. Someone had advised me the opposite: that the built-in audio would have a problem and to use a soundcard with the C-Media CMI8768 chipset for known support. But I haven’t tried either yet to confirm, so you’re right that the article is purely my conjecture. I should work on making the writing tone less “objective fact”-y and emphasize that it’s merely my best understanding thus far, and always evolving. (For instance, the article was originally written for Debian, but then I learned about OpenBSD and adjusted the hardware accordingly.)

      Anyway, any more suggestions about hardware? I haven’t bought this stuff yet except the monitor, so your tips can help me avoid buying the wrong stuff.

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        Some thoughts on hardware load out then:

        • I’m single monitor myself, but you could do better than 1080p and/or 16:9. 16:10 and even 1:1 panels exist, and DPI/font scaling exists on >1080p, so even if you lose space, text looks better.

        • You probably don’t need workstation hardware and/or a low end dedicated GPU. You could get by with more modest hardware, and if you’re OK with it, build it yourself. (I personally buy off-lease business desktops, nowadays.) There’s nowadays a plateau of little performance gains, and your needs seem modest, so older and/or non-workstation hardware is fine - even laptops. Integrated graphics is completely fine for single-monitor non-gaming tasks.

        • Again, if HD Audio based things didn’t work on OpenBSD, everyone using sound hardware made in this decade would be in deep shit.

        • I don’t see the need to buy another NIC unless your on-board one is extremely dire or you plan on doing networking related stuff with the machine. Most high-end machines come with a cromulent Broadcom/Marvel/Intel NIC that is nice, and TBH, the low end Realtek NICs are also fine.

        • That mic and mixer setup screams overkill. You can do mixing satisfying for everything but advanced podcasting and music production with software and inputs on the system itself. Get a good headset, or a more modest microphone.

        • Tape for a workstation seems like a big oddity to me over Internet and local hard drive backups.

        • The security proportion seems like big security theatrics to me, for little gain over spending security in other areas.

        • Keyboards are subjective. I don’t like ergo or goofy function keys, but… (And FWIW but likely unrelated, that secondary selection link sent every red flag flying - GPL violations and replacing binaries on a system with likely outdated. incompatible, and dubiously sourced? No.)

        • The printer and video input seem fine.

        Not getting into software because that’s an even more subjective and costless concern.

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          (I personally buy off-lease business desktops, nowadays.

          I thought about doing that but just haven’t tried it. Where do you get yours? And what make/models if any tend to work consistently well with FOSS software from Linux to BSD’s?

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            I get them locally, usually, or from my friend who ships them cheaply. Compatibility is pretty good; firmware is boring and the devices are usually just stock Intel stuff well supported by everything. By the time they go off lease, things like graphics driver support is resolved.

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              Oh, that’s a good point about graphics. I’d have appreciated that on at least two machines. Appreciate the reply.

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        Yup, I just followed the FAQ guide to full disk encryption, then read this page https://man.openbsd.org/installurl.5 to setup the ports then do - pkg_add i3 firefox. No Xorg config or anything.

        My main customization is to setup a ‘solarized light’ colour scheme for xterm https://github.com/solarized/xresources .

        My biggest pain point is staying on stable base, but wanting cutting edge packages like firefox, thats why I made my comment above about coolpkgs.

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          why buy a junky low end sound card when HD Audio is basically supported by everything in the known universe?

          Because integrated sound may be HD Audio but often have poorly isolated DACs. On my desktop computer the normal audio out jack has an obnoxious low pitch hum that changes tone slightly depending on the current CPU utilization. My monitor also supports DisplayPort audio but it has a similar hum tuned to the brightness of whatever’s currently being displayed.

          Those DACs aren’t properly isolated from the power supply driving the other components. CPU utilization and LCD brightness both change power draw, affecting everything on the same circuit. Interfaces like PCIe and USB have regulators that clean up the power, and there should be additional regulators and capacitors on even the junkiest sound cards. But that shitty embedded “HD Audio” is running right off the same power rail as everything else on the motherboard.

          I’m not even a hardcore audio junkie, I listen to 128kbps mp3s from soundcloud all day. I just prefer not to listen to my city’s AC electrical grid being converted to DC. Maybe you don’t notice it, or maybe you don’t care. But if you just saw the HD Audio label and somehow thought that had anything to do with audio quality, you’re the one who’s outright misinformed.

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          A while ago someone posted something about nix and I mentioned I would love a nix clone for openbsd but simpler for use on developer workstations and servers…

          I developed a mini prototype here: https://github.com/andrewchambers/coolpkg

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            Ideally I will reimplement in C and replace the subset of the openbsd ports tree I use with this in the next few months as I feel it is a superior system in terms of flexibility and also simplicity*

            *to be proven through use.

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            The Brother HL-L5100DN is a duplex LaserJet which allows that “raw” TCP printing

            Brother is a LaserJet? HP lawyers are working on a lawsuit right now ;)

            On a more serious note, if anyone is looking for cheap home laser printers, ZjStream based ones have a nice open source driver. I’ve initially set up my HP P1102w with HPLIP, but then discovered this driver and switched to it.

            The Linux kernel on Tails samples system properties to generate randomness, but why not help it out with a dedicated true random number generator (TRNG)?

            Modern CPUs already have one. Yeah, some people are paranoid about Intel/AMD backdooring the RNG, but whatever. Actually, what if these USB dongle RNGs are secretly made by the NSA to target paranoid crypto nerds? :D