So, I'm sitting here looking over some Docs I found talking about this stuff again, and though I do admit, I've not used much of this in some time now (Mostly because my little Network here at home is locked down by first having a Router stand in the way, then another Router and Hardware Firewall, then a Switch, and then a "Hardware Security Device" and on top of that, having my machines set where you have to comply with MY password policy... To make it short; I don't worry a whole lot as I don't think of myself as an easy target) and, anyway, I do remember wayyyyy back, I was trying out a new version of Fedora Core, and I noticed that a lot of SELinux stuff had been added to a base install.

Being someone interested in Unix Security, I started looking at it. I was pretty much new to it, as I hadn't ever used it before, but the ease of which to set it up, and the incredibly easy to understand GUI tools... It made me wonder just how the heck anyone would not use it, and got me thinking about other "Trusted" **** I've come across before.

I know SELinux isn't new or anything, I mean when I first saw it, it was years ago, and as far as I know, a lot of Linux distros like Fedora Core, still come with it pre-installed, and, now, I'm looking at the Trusted BSD stuff.

It's almost embarrassing to say this, but, given that I've been a fairly Honest person, and I've admitted when I was in over my head on discussions (Which I think is quite a quality in this type of Industry, where people will lie and pretend they know exactly what they are talking about even when they don't) I don't mind saying that I haven't ever actually LOOKED into Trusted BSD anything.

So, right now, I went on and started looking into it, and I'm finding quite a bit of info about it. I think it's cool really; I mean I know whenever you buy a book that talks about Linux VS BSD, they'll tell you, for the most part, that the differences are more Philosophical than technical.

That's crap to be Honest; Linux is a great OS to run on any Computer; Be it Desktop, Server, Embedded, anything! BSD, same thing; You can run BSD on your desktop, your Laptop, your Server, your embedded stuff, just as Linux does, and when it comes down to it, you'd have to look pretty hard to find someone who'd actually have the balls AND ignorance to say that BSD, in general, is a lot more stable.

I know I'm sticking my neck out here just a little, as Linux only people tend to be almost militant, but I don't care. BSD is more Stable when it comes to REAL Production environments. Period. And now that I'm looking into this whole Trusted BSD thing, I'm REALLY interested.

I'm kind of wondering how many BSD users we have here. I know there's myself, and SirDice, who uses FreeBSD quite often, and, I admit, SirDice is WAY more experienced in BSD than I am, I'm wondering if anyone would be willing to chime in about what they're using:

If you use Linux, and you don't mind taking part in what could very well become a nice interesting thread, please reply with the following information -

How long have you been using Linux?

Which Distros of Linux have you tried?

Which Distros of Linux do you stick with the most? (Most of us who use Linux don't exactly use just one; I myself will give the info about me in a little bit here)

If you DO only use one Distro of Linux, which one is it, and, why do you ONLY use that one?

What makes you stick with it?

Have you considered anything else?

Have you yourself used SELinux?

How did you set it up?

What else have you done to lock the machine down?
For the BSD users -

How long have you been using BSD?

Which BSD stuff have you tried?

Which BSD do you use?

If you use Multiple versions, what are they?

What makes you REALLY stick with that particular one?

How many have you tried out?

If you use more than one BSD on a regular basis; Which BSD stuff do you have and use, and why do you prefer them?

Have you ever used Trusted BSD stuff at all?

What methods do you personally use for locking down your BSD OSs?

For those of us using both Linux AND BSD -

Which do you prefer?

How do you use each one differently?

If you don't use them differently, what do you do with them?


More or less, I'd like to sort of get a roll call of sorts of our user base, and which OSs they use, and how they lock them down. I think it would be interesting if everyone who used Linux and BSD here chimed in, gave a little info about what makes them use one Distro / Version over another, and, of course, for the Security Aspects of this, what you all do to insure that it's safe from intrusion, or, at the very least, what steps you take to make sure it's not some big cluster of holes that lets everyone in.


Another thing I'd like to go into, is for Servers -

What Servers do you use? How do you lock them down? Which works best for you?

The Trusted BSD stuff I'm looking at right now looks really cool. And, again, I don't have much in the way of experience, as I haven't ever really looked into it. I knew Trusted BSD existed obviously, but I didn't really ever look into it. I mean I've got a lot of stuff in place to keep my machines at least somewhat safe, and I'll be chiming in as well, and, also, any extra info is welcome too! By that, I mean this:

If you use ANY other version of Unix, what it is? How long have you been using it? Why do you use that VS something else? I mean, obviously, there are a LOT of OSs based on Unix, and I'm curious about who does what with it.

And yes, I'm going to say Mac OS X is Unix as well. It's the easiest to use BSD on the Market really lol.

Also, what about non PC or Consumer aimed stuff?

Anyone using an SGI Workstation or Server?

An Alpha?


I personally use BOTH Linux and BSD. I've been using BSD on and off since 2000 / 2001. I don't really remember if it was 2000 or 2001, so I can't say for sure, and for Linux, it's about the same.

I use FreeBSD and PC-BSD for my BSD based stuff. I LOVE FreeBSD, and PC-BSD is basically FreeBSD but with a lot of tools to make it easier to set up. It's also got a nice look to it. I currently use it on my Laptop.

In Linux, I use Debian, SUSE (OpenSUSE, paid SUSE, and so on) Slackware, and, once in a while, I like to install Mandriva. The reason I don't use Mandriva all the time, is that even though it's VERY nice, and has impressed me on more than one occasion, I just can't stick with it. A lot of the time, the reason is in how they handle things. Sometimes I've seen stuff break that just shouldn't. So, I stick with the main distros I listed, and then once in a while, I'll check in on Mandriva. I still like it enough to try it out.

I don't own any non-PC based stuff, though I'd LOVE to, so nothing to say there.

Anyway, I'll stop here for now; I'll wait until we have some replies, and then we can get this thing rolling.

If we can get some people to reply, and get a good discussion going, I think it may turn out well.