Mac OS X from a FreeBSD perspective

Pete French pete at
Tue May 13 20:18:37 BST 2003

> regarding the relationship between the BSD and Mac file systems (I've 
> installed UFS, but everything is in one big partition), and also the 

Tempting as it is that is a descision which is going to cause you a lot
of problems downstream I'm afraid. A lot of Mac apps assume that they have
HFS underneat them and can store metadata.

> way a hostname is assigned. Also the relation between the Admin account 
> password and the /etc/passwd file (i.e. my username is NOT in there!).

NeXT derived systems dont use the flat files - there is a networked
database called 'netinfo'. A bit like SUNs yellow pages / NIS thing - except
it works a lot better. If you want to get as the password file then go
to a terminal window and type 

nidump passwd /

...if you are on a netwokr of machines then you can find the local password
files for them in /machine-name. The password file in / is global, or you
can use . on an individual machine to get its local entries. This applies
to pretty much all the config files. This irks normal UNIC bods for a while
until they get used to it, but it actually works extremely well.

I'd love to see a netinfo implementation for FreeBSD

> These are not stated here as major problems, as it's only my first 
> install. I just wondered if any others have installed OS X and how they 

I'm boiassd as I;m an old NeXT person, but I think its excellent - best
GUI over UNIX anyway by a lod road. As a general UNIX it does have its
quirks, and for a server I would ptrefer FreeBSD. But for desktop use it's


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