OpenBSD: Move to OpenBSD

Six months after moving from FreeBSD to OpenBSD. No, no, I’ve not abandoned FreeBSD/PC-BSD in favour of OpenBSD, let’s say.. uhmm, it’s only about testing OpenBSD capabilities.

I must say I’m very glad with OpenBSD in general. Then reason to move from FBSD to OBSD is mainly the suspend/resume support. I’m going to enumerate positive and negative issues of OpenBSD, always from my particular point of view. Of course this is only a personal opinion, based on my experience. Possibly I haven’t reached all the OpenBSD potential.

My machine

Thinkpad R61 Centrino DUO 2200Mhz 4Gb RAM


The OS

OpenBSD Current snapshot 30/04/2012 (stable now is 5.1) amd64



  • Fast and reliable Suspend/Resume support, both in amd64 and i386. The only 100% functional in SMP architectures in BSD world.  FreeBSD and NetBSD support suspend/resume (FreeBSD only in amd64 architecture) but with problems, mainly usb stuff after resume. See others posts in this blog for suspend/resume in FreeBSD/NetBSD.
  • Very good performance in userland apps, network, etc.
  • The easiest way to upgrade in BSD world. No need of usb sticks, isos, etc. With bsd.rd you can boot and launch the installation/upgrade tool.
  • Low resources consumption.
  • Secure by nature.
  • Very easy usb mount/umnount with hotplug-diskmount.
  • Very frequent snapshots and up-to-date apps (i.e. firefox)



  • No NTFS writing support.
  • No Linux emulation in amd64 and not very fast emulation in i386.
  • No flash support. No problem with youtube due to html5 support in firefox. Some flash videos can be watched with gecko-mediaplayer and FlashVideoReplacer addon for firefox. Most of flash videos will not work.
  • No good video acceleration. Gnome3 work only in fallback-mode, and with ugly appearance.
  • No KDE4 available. But KDE 3.5 runs fine. It’s my desktop environment of choice.
  • USB storage is, in my experience, not as quicker as in FreeBSD or Linux.
  • No CPU P-States, so worse autonomy when on battery.
  • Not so many ports as FreeBSD.
  • Not in the bleeding edge of desktop apps.


In general, if you need suspend/resume in your laptop OpenBSD is a good option. The same if you are concerned about secure in your server, or even if you own a low resources computer.


In my opinion, OpenBSD team is making things in the best manner. And things are going faster. Keep on the good way!


Give an oportunity to OpenBSD!


About jjjesss

I'm a guy interested in technology, bsd fan and concerned about the world around.
This entry was posted in BSD, OpenBSD. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to OpenBSD: Move to OpenBSD

  1. s says:

    Good post, my friend – thank you.

  2. Eric Radman says:

    Good summary. OpenBSD 5.4 shipped with Fuse support, so you can use ntfs-3g to get RW access to NTFS volumes.

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