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    🎉🎉🎉

    It’s odd that the biggest change is not mentioned anywhere in the release notes though.

    […] and ThinkPad are trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation

    heh, hasn’t it been a Lenovo trademark for years now?

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      It’s odd that the biggest change is not mentioned anywhere in the release notes

      That and there’s significant effort and new hardware support behind this dot point too:

      • Various improvements to graphics support for current generation hardware.
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        Anyone know if that includes haswell gfx?

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          Yes I believe so:

          A system with Haswell or newer Intel HD Graphics (see here for a list) or a system with AMD Radeon HD7000 AMD GPU or newer (see here for a list).

          https://freebsddesktop.github.io/2018/12/08/drm-kmod-primer.html

          1.  

            I’ve been using Haswell gfx since 2015 :) back then it was a fork of the base system, updating the directly ported drm in base to match Linux 3.8.

            The current LinuxKPI based port is…

            • actually available for FreeBSD 11.2 as well
            • currently at 4.16 for 12
            • (so for Intel, up to and including Coffee Lake I think)
            • includes amdgpu with Display Core working
            • includes vmwgfx
        2. 1

          I suppose that’s not a signature feature, but it’s definitely the kind of thing I’d want to know about. When something breaks it’s good to have some inkling about the change.

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          Some things I thought were noteworthy from the detailed release notes (linked from the article):

          • The default PAGER now defaults to less(1) for most commands.
          • The WITH_REPRODUCIBLE_BUILD src.conf(5) knob has been enabled by default.
          • The legacy gdb(1) utility included in the base system is now installed to /usr/libexec for use with crashinfo(8). The gdbserver and gdbtui utilities are no longer installed. For interactive debugging, lldb(1) or a modern version of gdb(1) from devel/gdb should be used.
          • The dd(1) utility has been updated to add the status=progress option, which prints the status of its operation on a single line once per second, similar to GNU dd(1).
          • The bectl(8) utility has been added, providing an administrative interface for managing ZFS boot environments, similar to sysutils/beadm. (Yay boot env management in base)
          • The ext2fs(5) filesystem has been updated to support full read/write support for ext4.
          • FreeBSD has changed the way graphics drivers are handled on amd64 and i386. Graphics drivers for modern ATI/AMD® and Intel® graphics cards are now available in the Ports Collection.
          1. 2

            I don’t see anything that prevents anyone from fixing these issues on Electron. What is all flame war about?

            I am not happy with Electron apps right now, but it does not mean that they cannot get better. The language, the VM, and the SDK, they are all open source and widely adopted, actively developed.

            Isn’t it exciting that in the near future whether we use Windows, MacOS, Linux, or BSD won’t matter anymore?

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              IMO, sure, but only if that doesn’t mean that they’re all dragged down to the lowest common denominator.

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                I think VSCode proves that with enough effort, Electron apps can be very, very good. I’m not sure how much of the MS tweaking can be applied generically to the platform itself, though.

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                  Isn’t it exciting that in the near future whether we use Windows, MacOS, Linux, or BSD won’t matter anymore?

                  There is no official support for any BSD in Electron…

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                  The new website triggered a lot of passionate opinions. I see that it launched with a different tagline than originally proposed and I really like it. It’s short and captures the essence of Rust:

                  Empowering everyone to build reliable and efficient software.

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                    I was one of the participants in the discussion. Loved that we made a difference, though I am a bit ashamed that I spoke out against the “everyone” part of the tagline. After thinking about it, if the Rust team’s goal is to target everyone, why should I complain?

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                    Thanks for this very detailed write up. It’s prompted me to try out FreeBSD on my XPS 15 again. Also great that you included details of disabling Nvidia graphics. On Arch I disable it with bumblebee and I believe this has a significant (positive) impact on battery life.

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                      Welcome, share your thoughts on setting up FreeBSD on that XPS 15 machine.

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                      I would suggest processing and extracting information from large files like log files, CSV, or JSON. See this post for an example.

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                        Do you happen to know where I could come across any spare logs or similar files?

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                          Just generate some with random garbage data, and then do something numerically intensive like summing it, counting words, or similar.

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                            Maybe you could download some books from https://archive.org/index.php

                            1. 2

                              Install bro and crawl the internet. Seriously.

                          1. 2

                            This is an amazing amount of work. I’m particularly excited about the prospect of CI on BSD VMs as none of the major hosted services do this as the moment.

                            Not sure about the email based workflow for submitting patches though. I read the docs and it feels like a lot of work for contributors to go through to set up and then submit a patch (compared to the typical github workflow). Still I might try it out and see how it feels in practice.

                            1. 3

                              Thanks for your kind words! Regarding the overhead of email, you only have to do it once and then it becomes dead easy. However, I still recognize that it’s complicated - in the future I intend to add web tools which let you interact with sr.ht in a similar manner to GitHub et al, but is backed by emails under the cover to seamlessly integrate with the email workflow.

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                              Hi Kev. Welcome to Lobsters!

                              Your complaints about those mean old trolls are well founded enough, but I think they are not so much about “the Linux community” (whatever that might be) and more about Reddit. With that in mind, please take some time to acculturate. This place is very specifically not Reddit, nor HN.

                              1. 4

                                That was my read as well, and also my own experience with reddit (and /r/programming even, which is supposed to be one of the better subreddits).

                                Not sure what to conclude other than once a community gets a certain size, and once the long tail that ends up being very loud and caustic grows enough to be problematic do you start to see these kinds of things.

                                1. 2

                                  I’d like to think it’s not all communities, but I’m yet to see evidence of a larger community that doesn’t conform to this pattern unfortunately.

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                                    I think /r/rust shows that it’s possible to have a tech focussed community on Reddit without all the vitriol.

                                    1. 3

                                      It is, but there’s still a low background hum of snarky and mean comments, in spite of the overall excellent tone. Some very valued members of the community avoid Reddit in favor of other places, like the Discourse instance. I think it’s fair to say that /r/rust is the exception that proves the rule, and will be effectively shuttering /r/xi_editor (not that it was ever very active).

                                      1. 2

                                        /r/ProgrammingLanguages/ is also a pretty good one. But it has to be set up like that from the start, with strong moderation. It always depresses me when anything gender equality related takes a quick dive to the bottom on /r/programming/… :(

                                  2. 3

                                    Subreddits have their own culture. Some are the worst, some the best. It all boils down to how the communities are managed.

                                    1. 2

                                      You’re absolutely right, I could have been more specific as my issue is/was with Reddit, not the Linux “community”. I’ve edited the title with that in mind.

                                      1. 4

                                        It occurs outside Reddit [1], Reddit is just one of the worst exponents of it. There is a subset of the Linux community who feel like they on a crusade against Microsoft, Apple, proprietary software, or whatever. I think Linux is attractive to some of these groups because of strong some ideological tendencies in Linux (GNU, ‘the true UNIX philosophy’, etc.). There is nothing wrong with these ideologies — most people are emphatic towards others and understand that Unix is not practical for everyone, nor that running a fully free system is not practical for everyone. But once you take away the empathy, you get pointless ideological and/or turf wars.

                                        It is not productive to engage in these discussions. What is a point of a discussion where no one wants to be convinced or is interested in the other person’s perspective?

                                        [1] I have been yelled at on some Linux forums because I also use a Mac, by people who never contributed a single line of code or documentation to a FLOSS project.

                                      2. 1

                                        @minimax wrote

                                        but I think they are not so much about “the Linux community” and more about Reddit.

                                        @kev wrote

                                        As far as I’m concerned, these people are not part of the Linux community and they’re not wanted. If you feel it is appropriate to belittle someone, or tell someone to “go kill themselves” for their choice of software, operating system, or their opinions, do us all a favour and f**k off.

                                        1. 1

                                          When you quoted me there, you left out the point I was trying to make. To clarify, I do not believe there is such a thing as “the Linux community”, any more than there is a “community” of Toyota drivers or people with colorful tatoos. Sure, the Linux kernel developers are a community of sorts: they have to work together. Distro maintainers have communities; maybe even the user base could be included, for some smaller and quirkier distros. But mere consumer choice does not grant anyone community membership status, under any sane definition of the word.

                                          Another thing: if you wander into any collection of people and start mocking their shared values, you can reasonably expect some hostility. Some will express it in a professional and mature fashion, others not so much. This age-old fact tells you nothing about Linux, Reddit, or even the Internet.

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                                        I’d be curious to see the 2018 Threadripper test repeated on some other OSes to see how they compare. Personally I’d be interested in FreeBSD and Linux.

                                        1. 1

                                          I had expected they did the same as what they did for the 2012 figure.

                                          Their update as it is now is incomplete without comparison to other OSes.

                                        1. 3

                                          Congrats on shipping! I’m loving all these new (potentially) ActivityPub powered apps. I’ll be keeping an eye on PikaTrack.

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                                            Stacks of great stuff coming in the future and in 8.0. Great to see the ZFS implemention get some attention. Always nice to have more OS choices with such an excellent file system.

                                            I also think choosing one firewall to support is a sensible decision. Would like FreeBSD to do the same. Fewer choices makes it easier for those starting out and less code makes for fewer places for bugs to hide.

                                            1. 3

                                              I’ve been running the scrollback branch on FreeBSD and Linux for a few weeks and it’s been rock solid.

                                              1. 1

                                                use emacs keybindings everywhere, in the shell, browser, you name it. On OS X, Karabiner mapped those bindings for me and now on linux laptop with GNOME it is a top-level feature.

                                                Does anyone know what GNOME feature the author is referring to here?

                                                1. 9

                                                  Along with UI themes, icon themes and cursor themes, GNOME supports “key themes” which determine the keybindings used in text-entry fields.

                                                  To see the current value, from the command-line:

                                                  dconf read /org/gnome/desktop/interface/gtk-key-theme
                                                  

                                                  To set the theme to “Emacs”:

                                                  dconf write /org/gnome/desktop/interface/gtk-key-theme "'Emacs'"
                                                  

                                                  (the double-quoting means it will be set as a string value)

                                                  To reset to defaults:

                                                  dconf reset /org/gnome/desktop/interface/gtk-key-theme
                                                  

                                                  There’s also a UI for this option, in the gnome-tweaks tool.

                                                  1. 1

                                                    Ahh right. Thanks for the explanation. I see there is an, “Emacs Input”, option in Tweak Tool now.

                                                    1. 1

                                                      Brilliant, I must try this, thanks!

                                                  1. 4

                                                    What a curious way to announce this much awaited new Elm release. Does anyone here know more about the ideas behind that? I’d have expected some kind of public beta and a proper release announcement…

                                                    1. 4

                                                      Yeah, it’s a bit…different, but it looks like picking and highlighting one feature is what was done for previous releases as well: http://elm-lang.org/blog

                                                      1. 2

                                                        Especially given the “is Elm dead?” questions that have been popping up in the past few months. I guess it’s better to be head-down working on the next release, but I think just a little more communication or visibility into the project might have helped alleviate some of the concerns.

                                                        1. 3

                                                          This topic was addressed by Evan (creator of Elm) in his recent talk at Elm Europe 2018 titled: “What is success?”

                                                          1. 2

                                                            So I watched the video, and this is addressed around the 41 minute mark: “There’s pressure on me to be always be saying everything that’s going on with Elm development, and the trouble is that it’s not always very interesting… it’s like… ‘still working’”.

                                                            I think “still working” would have been better, though. I don’t think anyone expected weekly updates. Every 2 months updating the Github readme with “still working” would have been fine. And the fear that saying you’re working on X and then it doesn’t pan out, so better to not say anything at all, seems like the worse option.

                                                            I also think the talk is a little dismissive of Javascript, and the community. Sure, the number of packages is by no means the be-all of a good language ecosystem, but it says something about the platform and its viability. If nothing else, it means there are alternatives within the ecosystem. People have limited time, and very limited time to invest in learning brand new things, so they naturally look for some way to compare the opportunities they have. Is looking at numbers the ideal behaviour? Maybe not, but if I want to sell Elm to my boss and she asks me when the last release was and I say “18 months ago” and she asks if I know when the next one will be and I say “no”… that’s how languages don’t get adopted and ecosystems don’t grow.

                                                            As a complete outsider, but also as someone who wants Elm to succeed, I think community management is something they need to take really seriously. It seems like Evan really doesn’t want to do it, so fine, have someone else do it. You can dislike that there are persistent questions about the future of your project, but they’re best addressed at the time, not left unanswered.

                                                            1. 3

                                                              Personally, I’m not really convinced by those arguments.

                                                              I especially don’t understand why 18 months since last release, and no known date of new release, are arguments against adoption of the language. Take C or C++ — they rarely have new releases. Is this an argument against adoption? I don’t think so; actually, more like for adoption in my opinion! Slow pace of releases can mean that the languages are mature and stable. I’d be really surprised and annoyed by a boss who would think otherwise.

                                                              It now occurred to me, that maybe Lua is a good example of a language having a similar development mode as Elm. It’s also evolved behind super tightly closed doors. And new versions are usually dumped on the community out of the blue; though usually with public betas & RCs. But those are published only for fleshing out bugs; language design input is mostly not taken into account. AFAIK, the community is generally OK with this. And the language is totally used and relied upon in numerous niches in the industry (including a large one in game development)!

                                                              1. 5

                                                                “Elm” includes the language specification and the compiler.

                                                                The C language specification rarely has new releases, but the C compiler, gcc, has 4 releases per year. There would be major concern from the community and your boss if gcc activity was perceived as drying up.

                                                                1. 1

                                                                  Ah; good one, never thought of it this way; big thanks for pointing this out to me!

                                                                2. 2

                                                                  Take C or C++ — they rarely have new releases

                                                                  C and C++ have been mature and in very wide use for decades, where Elm is a very young language - just a few years old. Same with Lua, it’s been in widespread use for, what, 10 years or more? I think that’s the difference. Elm is still much more of an unknown quantity.

                                                                  Slow pace of releases can mean that the languages are mature and stable

                                                                  Sure - when the language is mature and stable. I don’t think anyone would consider Elm to be that way: this new release, if I understand correctly, breaks every package out there until they’re upgraded by their maintainer.

                                                                  1. 3

                                                                    Personally, after some initial usage, I currently actually have a surprising impression of Elm being in fact mature. It kinda feels to me as an island of sanity and stability in the ocean of JS ecosystem… (Again, strictly personal opinion, please forgive me should you find this offensive.) I didn’t realize this sentiment so strongly until writing these words here, so I’m also sincerely curious if this could be a sign of me not knowing Elm well enough to stumble upon some warts? Hmh, and for a somewhat more colourful angle, you know what they say: old doesn’t necessarily mean mature, and converse ;P

                                                                    And — by the way — notably, new releases of Lua actually do also infamously tend to break more or less every package out there :P Newbies tend to be aggravated by this, veterans AFAIU tend to accept it as a cost that enables major improvements to the language.

                                                                    That said, I think I’m starting to grasp what you’re trying to tell me. Especially the phrase about “unknown quantity”. Still, I think it’s rare for a language to become “corporate grade non-risky”. But then, as much as, say C++ is a “known quantity”, to me it’s especially “known” for being… finicky

                                                            2. 2

                                                              Yeah the last release was in Nov 2016.

                                                              1. 1

                                                                The devs are active on https://discourse.elm-lang.org/, which might help people see the project activity.

                                                              2. 1

                                                                since they recently disallowed using javascript in elm packages, it only makes sense that they’d lead with what that had won them, i.e. function level dead code elimination.

                                                              1. 4

                                                                I write about programming and other tech on my blog at http://www.wezm.net and I write about operating system and computer adventures at http://bitcannon.net

                                                                1. 2

                                                                  The website and logo are neat. I’m somewhat surprised to see the “-rs” suffix featured in the logo and text when the API guidelines suggest otherwise:

                                                                  Crate names should not use -rs or -rust as a suffix or prefix. Every crate is Rust! It serves no purpose to remind users of this constantly.

                                                                  1. 4

                                                                    Huge number of new and improved features in this release. Congratulations to all involved.

                                                                    1. 5

                                                                      Redox is not a particularly good example of operating system design

                                                                      A bold claim that I’d be curious to hear sustantiated.

                                                                      1. 4

                                                                        Someone on the reddit post asked much the same thing. Here’s my reply:

                                                                        Sure thing. I’m not saying that Redox isn’t a great thing. It was the first project to seriously open up the possibility of writing operating systems in Rust and I will forever be thankful to it for that.

                                                                        To elaborate on bad design: there are a number of questionable (at least to me) design decisions. For example, why are schemes designed the way they are? It seems to me like if they want to change the api between usermode and the kernel, they should either go all the way or none of it. Schemes change it a bit, but they don’t reconsider and fix bad design choices in posix and linux.

                                                                        Furthermore, Redox is simply not designed for performance. Even the scheduler, one of the most important contributors to the overall performance of a system does far more work than necessary. It exchanges performance for slightly more simplicity, which, when designing an operating system, is rarely the correct choice.

                                                                      1. 3

                                                                        This makes me sad. I’d love FreeBSD to change a few things to encourage contribution and everytime these ideas come up they seem to be shot down with arguments like this.

                                                                        Maybe the current system works and encourages high quality contribution due to the higher barrier to entry but in the end I think encouraging folks to contribute and making it easier to so correctly is in the best interests of the project.

                                                                        I feel the Rust community does this well with the use of bots to automate some aspects of the process. There are some details of that in this article.

                                                                        Another data point I saw the other day was since moving to GitLab some gnome projects have seen a noticeable uptick in contribution: https://twitter.com/hergertme/status/1009538945439297536

                                                                        1. 12

                                                                          Ha, nice to see that here. By the way, here’s the full playlist for RustFest, which I have run over the last 4 days (there was only 1 talk day):

                                                                          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23lRkdDXqY0&list=PL85XCvVPmGQgdqz9kz6qH3SI_hp7Zb4s1

                                                                          For those interested: next RustFest is in September/October.

                                                                          1. 3

                                                                            For those interested: next RustFest is in September/October.

                                                                            Has the location been decided yet?

                                                                            1. 4

                                                                              Rome. We’re currently searching for venues, expect a date announcement in June (or later, depending on how well the venue search goes).

                                                                              1. 2

                                                                                It was announced to be Rome at RustFest Paris, not sure if there has been some official announcement on the internet yet.

                                                                                1. 3

                                                                                  We can’t get much more official: https://twitter.com/RustFest/status/1000403458212671488

                                                                                2. 1

                                                                                  Thanks all. I’ll keep an eye out for the dates and see if I can schedule a little trip from AU to Italy later in the year.