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[20150929] Interview with NetBSD's Christos Zoulas
DragonFly BSD Digest points out that there is an interview with Christos Zoulas available on BSD Talk. The interview is available in mp3 and ogg formats.

Christos us currently a mamber of the boards of directors of the NetBSD Foundation, as well as the foundation's secretary and treasurer. Besides the administrative tasks he has a long history of technical involvement in the project, like the Core group that he is also a member of. Liste to the interview to learn more!

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[20090309] Catching up - various items (and not source-changes, this time)
Many things have happened in NetBSD-land in the past few weeks, and as I've been slacking^Wbusy again, here's just a digest of things that I haven't seen mentioned elsewhere so far, in random order:

  • BSD-related radio-show "bsdtalk" has published an interview with NetBSD's Andrew Doran in its March 2009 issue. Besides covering Andrews work, the upcoming NetBSD 5.0 release is also discussed. Available as mp3 and ogg.

  • Cross-compiling pkgsrc packages is a long-standing dream, and it's yet waiting for someone to do it. For the time being, Jared McNeill has come up with an HowTo on how to build 32bit packages on amd64 (and probably other 64bit systems).

  • Jared McNeill's been hacking on more stuff recently, and one thing includes changes to the framebuffer console support on x86 (i.e. both i386 and amd64). In short, the recent changes are just a stop on the way to move the splashscreen code and esp. image data from the kernel to userland. I.e. that you can put something like
     menu=Boot NetBSD:vesa 1280x800;splash /logo.bmp;boot netbsd 
    into your /boot.conf in the future. But we'll see a separate announcement when that part is done. Let's stay tuned! :)

  • Martti Kumparinen has tackled generating a UFS file system on a "large" (~5.5TB) disk. As the process is not straight forward, he has posted a howto that may help in the future. Any takers for adding comments and integrating this into The NetBSD Guide? :)

  • Manpages are a major component of every Unix system. If you have ever tried to write such a manpage, you 'll have learned that they are in a funny text-based format similar to LaTeX and HTML, with its own processor - *roff. There are several *roff implementations, and the one used in NetBSD currently is the GNU implementation. To provide an alternative here is good for both removing GPL'd code from the NetBSD codebase, and also because groff is written in C++, which is slow to compile, and - well - requires a C++ compiler.

    A change for that situation may arise eventually, as Kristaps Dzonsons has been working on a groff replacement to format Unix manpages recently. See his posting and his homepage for further information.

  • I've talked about Xen support for PCI passthrough recently, and Manuel Bouyer has finished his work to get full support for passing in access to specific PCI devices from the Xen Dom0 to DomUs. See his posting to port-xen for more details!

  • Staying at Xen for a moment, David Brownlee has written instructions on Installing Windows XP in Xen under NetBSD. Just in case anyone needs to run a legacy system... :)

  • The NetBSD operating system supports many different hardware and CPU platforms. For a specific platform, binaries are compiled with a specific compiler, and there is a set of binaries for each platform. This results in a rather big number of different sets of binaries - currently about 50. A different approach with historic precedence is to have one binary work on may hardware platforms, so-called "fat" binaries.

    Gregory McGarry has posted suggestions on how to modify NetBSD's toolchain to produce fat binaries. An interesting concept which would solve a number of problems (think: support, updates, pkgsrc!)

  • Qt is a user-interface library found in widespread use in the Unix/Linux world. It's not exactly small, and its prerequirement of the X Window System doesn't it make a #1 choice for embedded systems at the first look. A Qt variant - Qt/Embedded - can be ran without X, though, and which thus avoids all the configuration and hardware support trouble of X in one go.

    On NetBSD, Qt/Embedded could talk to the wscons driver directly, and Valeriy 'uwe' Ushakov has posted about his work on patches to adopt Qt/Embedded to wscons. Who's first to post some screenshots?

Enjoy!

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[20071114] BSDTalk: Interview with Joerg Sonnenberger
Found via the Dragonfly BSD blog and onetbsd.org: Latest BSDtalk has an interview with Joerg Sonnenberger. Audio is available as mp3 and ogg.

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[20071006] bsdtalk131 - PCC with Anders "Ragge" Magnusson
The latest BSDtalk has an interview with Anders 'Ragge' Magnusson about his work on the Portable C Compiler. The interview is available as MP3 and Ogg Vorbis.

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[20070216] bsdtalk100 - NetBSD Developer Lubomir Sedlacik
BSDtalk #100 is up, it features an interview with NetBSD Developer Lubomir Sedlacik who does a lot of work on pkgsrc, esp. the pkgsrc security team. Lubomir organized the past pkgsrcCon in Prague, and he will talk more about the upcoming pkgsrc Convention in Barcelona, Spain, 2007.

The interview is available as mp3 and ogg formats.

Remember to visit the pkgsrcCon website, and if you want to attend it or even give a talk, register soon to help in planing!

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[20061230] Interview with NetBSD Release Engineer Jeff Rizzo
bsdtalk has an interview with Jeff 'riz' Rizzo, who's doing release engineering for NetBSD 4.0. It's available as mp3 and ogg.

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[20061123] Digest: ssshfs, NAMP VMware image, Segvguard, BSDtalk and a daemonic bag
OK, I'm too lazy to put this into separate items, so here's the stuff from today in one digest:
  • There was some progress on puffs, the userland filesystem stemming from last year's Google SoC, some time ago. More example userland filesystems are now available with sysctlfs and ssshfs, see src/share/examples/puffs.

    Rumours say that ssshfs works pretty well, which is a final reason to ditch the (abandoned first cut of the) netbsd-4 branch and make a -current kernel to play with this. BTW, for those wondering what ssshfs is, see ssshfs.c:

     * simple sshfs
     * (silly sshfs?  stupid sshfs?  snappy sshfs?  sucky sshfs?  seven sshfs???)
     * (sante sshfs?  severed (dreams) sshfs?  saucy sshfs?  sauerkraut sshfs?) 

  • People complained that there's no ready-made VMware image with NetBSD available, and this has changed now. The #NetBSD blog points at a NAMP (NetBSD + Apache + MySQL + PostgreSQL + PHP) image that has quite a lot of software installed in 187MB size. See the arudius homepage for more information on NAMP.

  • Elad, chief security hacker of NetBSD's infrastructure has proposed to add PaX Segvguard as yet another building stone in NetBSD's security architecture:
         PaX Segvguard monitors the number of segfaults in a program
         per-user, in an attempt to detect on-going exploitation attempts
         and possibly prevent them.  One common attack PaX Segvguard can
         help mitigate is when an attacker tries to brute-force a function
         return address, when wanting to perform a return-to-lib attack.  

    See Elad's proposal for more details! Note that a start of the implementation is already in NetBSD-current, but that this is still work-in-progress.

  • BSDtalk did an interview with pkgsrc developer Johnny Lam (jlam@), it's available in mp3 and ogg.

  • Last, if you don't know what to wish for Xmas, there's something for the average BSD geek: a daemon-themed bag (which is probably not really authorized by the Daemon owner, but well).


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[20060928] bsdtalk070 - Interview with NetBSD Developer Tim Rightnour
Tim 'garbled' Rightnour has worked on various PowerPC-related porting efforts recently, among them polishing of the prep port. The latest bsdtalk article has an interview with Tim, available as mp3 and ogg.

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[20060927] bsdtalk066 - Interview with Michael Dexter about sysjail
Article with some BSDCG & OpenBSD things, and an interview with Michael Dexter about sysjail interview in mp3 and ogg.

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[20060912] BSDtalk: Interview with Jason Thorpe
Jason Thorpe has been a BSD hacker for quite some time, and there's a nice interview (both mp3 and ogg) with him on BSDtalk that talk about his personal history WRT BSD, work he did previously with lots of details on his work on the Alpha port architecture, the bus space and bus DMA framework and the hardware circus he's using these days to do NetBSD development. He continues talking about a native NetBSD port to the Apple MacBooks and what alternatives are there, his recent work on property lists (proplib) to decouple from historic data structures, and the future of the locking facilities inside the kernels for SMP support. Other topics include the weight of 'old' platforms vs. 'new' ones (and if one holds back development on the other), the BSD license and its consequences esp. in commercial environments, and his preferred working environment and programming language.

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