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[20070612] Report from Linuxtag Berlin 2007 (Updated)
[I'm posting this verbatim here as sent to netbsd-advocacy, just because I can! :-]
* Report from Linuxtag Berlin 2007

I was in Berlin from May 31st to June 3rd to visit the Linuxtag, and here 
are some of the impressions, facts and rumours that I came across:


*** NetBSD at the Linuxtag:

This year featured a "BSD day" workshop, that had, well, BSD related
topics. Mostly. Unfortunately this took the whole BSD group into a
distant room for one day, where very few people found us. The schedule
of the day can be found at
http://www.linuxtag.org/2007/de/community/workshops/bsd-day.html.

Besides a track of BSD-related talks, NetBSD also had a booth where
we've handed out CDs, flyers and t-shirts, and demonstrated NetBSD on an
StrongARM platform and in a virtualized environment with Xen, showing
NetBSD run both a KDE desktop setup to access two Tomcat web application
servers, which were connected to two Postgresql database server. The
booth got a lot of attention, and Joerg Sonnenberger, Stefan Schumacher, 
Georg Schwarz and I (Hubert Feyrer) had a lot to do, answering questions.

Besides the BSD booths, the BSDday track had some presentations where
people could learn about BSD.  A few details on my talks:

  * Vom Dach bis in den Keller - Statusbericht NetBSD

    English-language slides:
    http://www.feyrer.de/NetBSD/linuxtag2007-netbsd.pdf

    Questions I got after the presentation:
     + Is there a system for binary updates for the base OS, like
       available in FreeBSD?
     + What can I say about the quality of NetBSD manpages vs.
       FreeBSD / OpenBSD?
     + Why are there no books on NetBSD?

  * Portable Software- Installation on Linux, Solaris & NetBSD with pkgsrc

    I gave this talk with Stefan Schumacher, my slides are here:
    http://www.feyrer.de/NetBSD/Jul2005darcy-pkgsrc.pdf, Stefan's slides
    can be found on his homepage:
    http://net-tex.dnsalias.org/~stefan/nt/netbsd/pkgsrc-vortrag.pdf

    This talk was a replacement for another talk where the speaker
    didn't show up. It was chosen after pkgsrc received many questions
    at the NetBSD booth, esp. from people who want to use it on
    Solaris.


Other random comments on NetBSD's appearance at the show:

  + I was told that GMD, a major german research institute, did a port
    of NetBSD to PowerPC platform quite some time ago for their "Manna"
    project. I'm still investigating details here.
  + I was asked about the setup that I use on my notebook for both
    wireless and ethernet. It's based on ifwatchd to detect what
    interface is up, and wpa-supplicant for handling out WLAN
    configs. I'll write something with more details into my blog the
    next few days (feel free to remind me :).
  + I've never heared of the company "tarent" before, but they
    supported developers of free software projects (of which there were
    quite a lot at the LT) with free food for lunch. Choices were soups
    with and without meat on all days of the fair. Nice! (We need a
    Free Food Foundation :)
  + Hardware that people asked for WRT NetBSD on it included several
    inquiries about NetBSD on the IBM NetWork Station (ibmnws),
    NetBSD on the Amiga 1 (amigappc) as well as the status of NetBSD on
    the Sony Playstation 3, esp. with how the interfacing towards the
    Cell processors work.
  + Harald Welte offered a prototype board for the "OpenMoko" mobile
    phone platform, including development kit and documentation.
    Any takers?
  + pkgsrc needs advocacy!!! Articles targetted at non-NetBSD
    audience for Solaris, Mac OS X and Linux would be good.
    Any writers? Talk to me for ideas & input!


*** BSD Certification Group at the Linuxtag

The BSD Certification Group (which I'm a member of) also had a booth
at the Linuxtag. There was a talk on the status of the group by
Machtelt Garrels, all made in OpenOffice.org:

  * Full text:
    http://tille.garrels.be/training/bsd/20070601-LinuxTag-BSDCert-MGarrels.odt

  * Presentation with notes:
    http://tille.garrels.be/training/bsd/BSDCG-Status-200705.odp

At the Linuxtag, the BSD Certification group also did two beta runs of
the upcoming BSD associate (BSDA) certification, with about 20
participants that were using some BSD for quite some time, or that had
quite some Unix/Linux background. The general opinion was that the
examn was hard, but fair - and that you WILL have to study! :)

In general, there was great interest in the BSD certification, and
Linuxtag was a success for the BSD Certification Group as well.


*** Upcoming events

The following events need NetBSD presence with booths and
presentations:

  * Linuxtag Essen - no idea when exactly, Essen, Germany
  * CCC Summercamp - Aug 8-12, near Berlin, Germany
    URL: http://www.ccc.de/updates/2007/camp2007-hackersonaplane
  * FrosCon Bonn - Aug 25/26 2007 in St. Augustin, Germany,
    CfP is until Jun 4th. URL: http://froscon.de/
  * EuroBSDCon - Sep 14/15, Copenhagen, Denmark.
    URL: http://www.eurobsdcon.org/

  * Fosdem - ~Feb 2008, Brussels, Belgium
    URL: http://fosdem.org/
  * GUUG Fruehjahrsrachgespraech - ~Feb/Mar 2008 in Munich, Germany
    URL: http://www.guug.de/

If you're interested to setup a booth or join in with other BSD
people, please let me (hubertf@NetBSD.org) know, I can help to get
t-shirts, pins and flyers.


*** Pictures etc.

Stefan's pictures are available at
http://net-tex.dnsalias.org/~stefan/gallery/LinuxTag2007/ and
http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=532085527&size=l.

Axel Gruner made pictures of both the BSDCertification booth, see
https://bilder.bsdgroup.de/galleries/LT2007/208.html, and Linuxtag in
general, see
https://bilder.bsdgroup.de/galleries/LT2007/overview.html. Make sure
to check again in a few days, there are more pictures to come.

Axel's (german language) reports can be found at http://www.grunix.de/.


*** Summary

I'm very happy we've survived the event, and Linuxtag 2008 will be at
the same place, i.e. Messe Berlin. I'm looking forward to have more
NetBSD people at the booth - don't be shy, join in, it's fun!
The same goes for the other events mentioned above, as well as for
writing articles and doing NetBSD advocacy in general!

NetBSD needs _you_! 

Update: Here's a link with a few (slightly oversized) pictures of Stefan at the NEtSBD booth. Are we CoolBSD or what? :-)

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Disclaimer: All opinion expressed here is purely my own. No responsibility is taken for anything.

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