[PC-BSD Testing] Testing 7.1 RC1

Yvan Martin navyn5 at shaw.ca
Mon Mar 30 18:43:49 PDT 2009

First the good stuff:
1. Firefox and Thunderbird worked right away, which had not been the 
case with the Betas.
2. I was not presented with a choice of nVidia drivers, but nv behaved 
well which is all a normal user would expect.

This was on my 64bit AMD desktop with 7600GT video card. I also noticed 
there was no longer the four iterations of the WRITE_MIXER error I had 
been seeing upon existing PC-BSD through the last few versions of the 
1.x series and the earlier 7.x versions. This being said PC-BSD 7.1 RC1 
still does not know how to handle my M-Audio Revolution 5.1 Sound Card. 
The volume is still 10db lower than on Windows or Linux and while I can 
turn the volume up much higher the dynamics are simply not there and the 
music sounds dull... plus for someone who switches between OSes, it 
makes no sense to be running barely open for the other other OSes and 
almost all the way up for PC-BSD to get a similar volume level (with 
less dynamics). I realize the problem may well be with the FreeBSD layer 
but this would keep me from using PC-BSD as my principal Desktop OS, at 
least at this point in time... Kmix simply does not see the hardware 
only the OSS driver.

At the same time I had to pull the 32bit version on my Acer Aspire One 
netbook. The two previous versions would simply not run reliably: some 
times the touchpad worked fully and would respond to taps and scroll 
motiions... but most often, it would not and I was forced to use the 
buttons on either side of the touchpad (which are awful on that machine).

Possibly worse was the fact that the wireless network worked at best 50% 
of the time. I would only find out after booting into PC-BSD whether or 
not it would work. In the end, it was simply too frustrating to keep 
doing this... too bad because the OS showed promise in terms of response 
on a netbook class machine, although the startup time was quite long.

I will keep trying to use PC-BSD on my desktop for now and maybe one day 
revisit on the netbook PC.

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