The tenth version of the open source operating system FreeBSD has emerged.
Alphas of the new release have been available for about six months now and the final release seems not to diverge much form those emissions. A long list of the new bits in the OS can be found here, with some of the more noteworthy including:
- Lots more support for virtualisation, both of the OS and within it. The most interesting item for the virtualisation of Free BSD is the NetApp-Microsoft-and-Citrix-driven ability to virtualise FreeBSD under Hyper-V, which hints strongly at the OS being considered a legacy environment by some users. To balance the ledger, FreeBSD now has its very own native BHyVe hypervisor;
- A “tickless” kernel that reduces resource consumption across the board and is said to help FreeBSD performance on laptops (because this is, surely, the year of FreeBSD on the desktop. Not.);
- Improved WiFi support;
- DNS tool BIND has been replaced by Unbound and LNDS;
- Support for ZFS TRIM, which means FreeBSD can now play better with solid state disks;
Will these changes make FreeBSD a must-have OS? Yes and no. On the negative side, the OS retains about one per cent of the global server operating system market and it is hard to imagine the circumstances under which that would jump markedly.
One the positive side, FreeBSD is under the hood of Sony's PS4 and NetApp arrays, while Apple's OS X owes it many a debt.
FreeBSD users running the OS on a server will therefore likely appreciate this release. The rest of you can carry on without much fuss. ®