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xxi wrote (edited )

Ardent Debian GNU/Linux user here. I've at least thought about trying some BSD variant.

At the moment I'm pretty content with my "setup". I wanna stress that I'm a curious/passionate user, the code-stuff I've done i negligible, but it seems like a trend for me to simplify things as I go along. I've really grown fond of some suckless stuff.

I use st and dwm (and various other smaller tools) at the moment. If my Unix history isn't a product of my mind it seems to me that the project's goals are more "Unix:y" than some distro default software. In comparing some of the BSD:s and the GNU/Linux distros it seem that the former might be closer to the Unix ideal or whatever.

With that said. If you want stripped down you can be stripped down no matter what path you choose. I'd tread water if we talked have kernel-design, but when it comes to choosing and using software I've never really hit any walls so far.

I probably could install a Debian-like (or some other distro) base system and the just build all the shit I wanna use from source. So apart from that the BDS:s have this tradition to just dump a whole system on you I'd say that you could probably get what you want no matter which alternative you go with.

I fully subscribe to edmund_the_destroyer's point about licenses though. One thing that I've read but never really got until recently was the criticism of GNU-specific software provide novel and bulky solutions to all kinds of things. 2 examples: take info (texinfo) or tar. There's probably some good reason for info but man pages is fine with me. tar, well... Compare the OpenBSD and GNU man pages and you'll see what I mean.

Buuut... What I said before still stands. If you want stripped down you can have it no matter how you choose.


dieselriot OP wrote (edited )

At one point I got interested in st so I downloaded the source code from their site and it compiled without a hitch on freebsd. At the time I thought I had found some good use for cmatrix, that is to test how fast a certain terminal emulator is. For example, on my hardware, terminator will lag when rendering faster speeds, while urxvt (my terminal of choice for some time now) only lags a bit on the fastest one.

That said, st performed horribly on my "test", slow as fuck on any speed. So I thought the emulator was just poorly designed. That coupled with fontconfig and having to recompile to change the color scheme just made it a big disappointment for me.

After reading your post I decided to give it another shot, this time I found a patch for using plain .Xresources for configuring the font and the colors, and I found out that the cmatrix thing is just a bug with rendering multiple colors or bold characters in that specific application. If I run it at a mode that has only one color and no bold, it's very fast, and any other applications seem to work great too. I'm considering using it as my main terminal now. Only wish I could find a way to set a background image, but it's something I can live without.


xxi wrote (edited )

Cool. I'm prone to type too much, but that's all I can say, haha. The only "real problem" I had apart from getting to know the application was some UTF-8 related ones.

Image as in an actual image?


dieselriot OP wrote

I never noticed what you said before about GNU software being bloated, but now comparing native BSD tools and their GNU counterparts, I see what you mean. This even shows on basic stuff like cp.

If you're looking for stripped down, the thing is linux and linux distros are evolving around systemd and pulseaudio. You can't use firefox in linux without pulseaudio. I know about apulse but that doesn't seem to work all of the time and shouldn't even be necessary in the first place. Also correct me if I'm wrong, but nowadays most serious (haha) linux distros use systemd. There's artix for example, but it's still a system based on a distro that evolves around systemd.