Best book to learn BSD

Jez Hancock jez.hancock at
Sun May 11 01:21:28 BST 2003

On Sat, May 10, 2003 at 11:38:12PM +0100, Adrian J Mawdsley wrote:
> Hello,
> 	Being fairly new to BSd i was wondering if anyone could recommend a 
> 	good book to read up with.
> I shant start a "which BSD is best" question or such like. So am looking 
> for a book that covers BSD as a whole, or one that just covers a particular 
> version from a beginers point of view.
I would highly recommend reading the FreeBSD Handbook a good few times
- or at least Section I.

The handbook gives you a taste of how things work on FreeBSD and if
you're coming from Linux you'll probably notice the differences with
respect to init - although these are actually covered in Section II of
the handbook here:

If you're looking for something more low-level regarding how the kernel
works and memory is managed etc etc on BSD, this article might be

although this is only of interest if you're perhaps considering a career
in software engineering on Unix platforms.  Still quite interesting in
many respects.

> I do have experience with a few Distro's of Linux (Red Hat6.0+, Suse, 
> Mandrake 7.2+) if that is any indication of experience.
The main differences I found coming from MDK to FreeBSD were:
- the filesystem hierarchy is much cleaner and rigidly defined and in
  many senses this helps learn 'Unix' in a multi-user environment.
- the rc initialization process is much clearer - whilst mdk et al
  (linux in general) use the 'System V' startup style, BSD generally
  uses, well, BSD startup style(!).

Can't think of others right now (can't remember what linux is like

For a good description of the differences between the BSD's, you might
want to read this:


More information about the Ukfreebsd mailing list