FreeBSD Open-Source OS Comes to the PC-BSD Desktop

By Sean Michael Kerner  |  Posted 2014-01-31

Linux isn't the only open-source operating system, and it isn't the only one with both server and desktop components either. The FreeBSD Project is one of the earliest open-source operating system projects, with roots connecting it to the original open-source BSD Unix work performed at the University of California at Berkeley. On Jan. 20, FreeBSD 10 debuted, providing server users with multiple performance and virtualization improvements. While FreeBSD itself could potentially be used as a desktop system, the PC-BSD open-source project is the home base for FreeBSD as a desktop operating system. PC-BSD 10, based on FreeBSD 10 at its core, was officially released on Jan. 29. The PC-BSD system relies on the FreeBSD kernel, which differentiates it from open-source Linux operating systems that rely on a Linux kernel. The kernel, while critical to the operation of the system, is not the interface that desktop users see. That's the realm of technologies that are actually common to both Linux and FreeBSD. PC-BSD 10 includes the KDE 4.10 desktop interface, which is also widely used on Linux systems. Additionally, users of PC-BSD 10 have the choice of the MATE, XFCE or LXDE desktop interfaces, which are also commonly deployed on Linux systems. In this slide show, eWEEK takes a look at the new PC-BSD 10 operating system and what it offers desktop users.

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at, the news service of, the network for technology professionals.

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