Switching from Windows to Linux or FreeBSD – But Which?

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Over the years I’ve used Window, Linux, macOS, FreeBSD and many more operating systems. My main desktop has recently been using Windows 10 but it feels like a time to change – the question is Linux or FreeBSD? With computer science and virtualisation being as important as World of Warcraft how can I make this work?

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  1. I wish I could give a thumb up and even subscribe and share…
    Maybee is a future if you do upgrade your terrible audio setup. It's hard to listen to this "out-of-the-bottom-of-the barrel" sound multiplied by your strange to an American ear foreign accent.

  2. BSD barely has any hardware support. It's fast but the package manager is slow af.

    There's no reason to use BSD on a desktop unless all you do is a very specific task which BSD can handle (I.e programming).

    99.999% of the people would want to go with GNu/Linux

  3. Dual-Boot is a pain in the arse? I have a octa-boot system with Linux, FreeBSD, Win10, Win7, Solaris and Hackintosh. One data disk and one for each OS. The magic is the use of a SATA power switch where i only power on the OS disk that i want boot from. Grub and Co is indeed an (very bad documented and way to complicated) pain in the arse.

  4. Linux has more support and features; on the other hand, many consider FreeBSD to have a better design.
    Unless you need fast boot times, use Fedora's LXDE spin. To avoid reboots, upgrade via the command line.

  5. Wow–are you me? We've got similar setups, right down to the hardware and monitors. My build: http://www.overclock.net/t/1559333/build-log-dual-socket-mercury-s8s-workstation-converted-from-s8.

    I'm running Gentoo with ZFS on the bare metal and a Windows guest on KVM with a graphics card passed through to it. ZFS on Linux works great. It was still a little buggy up until about two years ago, but ever since it's been rock solid, and I've never lost a single bit of data, even having imported my zpool from an old OpenSolaris installation.

    Definitely reconsider KVM. It's where all of the development is happening, and if you go the PCI passthrough route, you'll be glad for resources like https://www.reddit.com/r/VFIO/. My Windows guest performs at about 95% of bare metal performance, and using synergy and ddccontrol, I can switch between the OSes with a couple of keypresses–no separate keyboard and mouse required. Do be aware that regardless of the hypervisor, if you passthrough a GeForce, you will need to either hack the drivers or the hypervisor to hide the fact that you're in a VM from the nVIDIA drivers (google "vfio error 43" for details). It's not the end of the world, but I avoid the whole thing by using Quadros which support passthrough officially.

    You'll also definitely want a separate USB controller and USB sound card to pass through to the Windows guest for the best audio quality. The virtual sound devices, at least in qemu-kvm, are very choppy. Even my passed-through USB sound card was a little choppy until I isolated a few cores and dedicated them to the guest. Seems like Windows is very sensitive to latency and it doesn't like to compete with other processes on the hypervisor.

    Good luck with your setup and feel free to hit me up if you run into any problems. I have seen it all.

  6. I'm also thinking how I want to configure my future pc. I have now Macbook pro and love using mac. I have also used linux my main os about 6 years and love how easy it is to do hacky things. I have windows 10 in vm right now because I need lot off professional programs.

    I'm kinda like the idea that I have linux running in backround and use my main os passthrough MacOs. Still use windows in other passthrough vm. Then connection to linux from vnc if need conf something. Or maybe 3rd very cheap and old graphics card connected to normal pci slot. Still have to "reboot" vm's sometimes if wanted to do core count different.

    My main concern is that I really need system where I can return linux at any time easily. It is way too easy to screw things and lost all these config files. This kind off system will probably take many weeks or even mounts to config so it work like charm. I'm really waiting what will be your choice of doing this.

  7. I am staying with Win10, I love it, except for the fracking forced updates and spying, their is a reg edit you can do that will stop it from updating automagically though, if running 10-pro or enterprise, you can point its updates to a non-existant server and then just do them manually when you choose to. P.S. Get a lapel mic, the audio is bouncing off the walls 🙂

  8. Hey Guy!
    well, OS suggestion: unRAID OS, if you are not familiar with it, it is Linux based and can do a lot more than being a fileserver. Especially it can virtualize all your OSs you need, passthrough hardware without problems (esp. older GPU like the 960) with full 3D support. Furthermore you can passthrough USB devices, so that for example you can use for each VM different Input devices and Displays (if you have enough GPUs). Could be interesting, because you won't loose time to change the OS (e.g. Win left, Linux mid and right, unRaid top Display..)

    Other way: install MS Hyper-V Server 2k12R2 better 2K16 (both are free, control is possible without AD, after a bit powershell) on your many threat machine (The big ONE), and use a seperate client. With Srv 2K16 the last small Remote3dfx probs are gone (as long your guest Win 8.1 better 10 Pro for WoW). Hyper-V can virtualize all other OS, run containers and so on. If you use a GUI Version of Win 2K16 Srv you can seamless connect to the MS AZURE cloud (if you need an external VM to test or for your online backup you mentioned). Via Dreamspark (as you are working on you're PhD) you can get the relative spywarefree Win 8.1 Industrial Pro 64bit …full 3D etc. compatible, and will still be supported for a while).
    Both OS do usually not restart

    I personally would physically seperate my WoW-Gaming-Rig from my workstation. No matter which main OS is installed on the big ONE. Even a 40-50€/$/£ G4560 has enough power combined with your GTX 960 (throw an other GPU in the big ONE), and yeah I would Install on my gaming machine Win 10 Pro, use Windows "Shut Up" and the common powershell commands to ban anything you don't need (you mentioned privacy). Restarts can at least be timed and If won't influence your workflow. If you like that. And think about the next changes MS showed in the Insider-Preview of Win 10…bash will come 😉 to MS.

    Sry for some more lines. Keep rockin',
    Best – Patrick

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