Whither goest thou, Glendix?

Sometimes I read about things that look interesting, and I haven’t the slightest idea why.

For example, Glendix seems like something that I want to try, but I don’t know where it could get me.

I’ve looked over the quickstart page more than once, and as I understand it, it mixes Plan 9 and the 2.6.31 kernel. That much I follow.

Patching and setup actually look quite straightforward, which is a scary thing to say out loud. There was a time when those words would never cross my fingertips.

I am just not sure what Glendix would do for me. Will it make the machine faster? Or does it just change the way the internal workings communicate with the hardware?

I have a history of flitting between strange little projects, and then wondering why I tried it in the first place though. Stali Linux is the first one that comes to mind.

That was a year ago, and I haven’t been back since. 😐

I may have to try Glendix though, just as an experiment. Science demands an answer. 😈

13 thoughts on “Whither goest thou, Glendix?

  1. ScannerDarkly

    Plan9 stuff now? I haven’t seen you use a BSD yet, let alone anything this obscure.

    A lot of projects like Glendix are probably for academic purposes…

    1. imgx64


      I guess it wasn’t all that different from Linux since he never wrote about it again.

      I’m personally interested in trying *BSD some day, for exactly the same reasons as kmandla (“… things that look interesting, and I haven’t the slightest idea why”). I tried downloading the FreeBSD and OpenBSD ISOs and installing them in a virtual machine. But then the installation finishes, and I end up thinking “now what?” and never doing anything interesting there. Maybe I should read some *BSD evangelism for interesting things to do…

      1. K.Mandla Post author

        And if you find some BSD evangelism, send me a link, please.

        I am a little ashamed that it’s been a year and a half since I took a lengthy look at a BSD (has it been that long?! time flies … 😯 ). I liked it when I tried it, but I need to dig in a little deeper. 😳

        1. CorkyAgain

          I don’t think many people turn to BSD because of evangelism. That’s one area where they’re different from the Linux crowd.

          Some people turn to BSD because of its solid Unix heritage and its less chaotic development process. I hear a lot of comments about Linux’s half-baked drivers.

          As for what you can do with BSD, well, almost everything you can do with Linux. FreeBSD has an especially large ports collection.

          The biggest shortcoming that people complain about seems to be its Flash support. (I personally don’t care about that. I hate Flash anyway.)

          It’s interesting that imgx64’s experience with FreeBSD was to ask “Now what?” once he got it installed. That’s been my experience with every Linux distro I’ve tried. Once I get it installed and configured for all my peripheral devices, it sits idle for a few months and then gets wiped off the drive.

          FreeBSD, on the other hand, I’ve kept on using since I first installed it almost five years ago. I can’t really explain why. It just felt right somehow.

        2. Peter

          “And if you find some BSD evangelism, send me a link, please.”

          Not sure if this counts as evangelism but http://sdf.lonestar.org/ offer shell accounts on machines running NetBSD. (disclaimer, I’ve been a member of sdf for over a decade).

  2. CorkyAgain

    Stali Linux because of its claims that static linking yields smaller, faster executables. It’s obvious why that would appeal to someone trying to wring new life out of old machines. But as far as I can tell, the project is still not much more than a proposal. It’s a long way from being usable.

    Glendix, like Plan 9, because it extends the “everything is a file” paradigm and claims to provide cleaner semantics as a result. But I don’t see why you’d want to muddy that clarity by putting a Linux kernel underneath it all. It seems to me that the benefits of Plan 9 are best achieved by going all in, and not just ripping off their userspace.

  3. Glenn Becker

    Curiosity and a glorious strain of “OMG WTF” kept me tinkering with Plan9 for some time.

    That, and the fact that it’s the only OS I know that has a planetarium program by default (the unfortunately named scat).

    It’s a pretty fascinating project. I never really got much beyond “boot up Plan9 … poke around … get frustrated by the monstrous difference of it all … log off”; however, that says more about my own weaknesses than the weaknesses (or strengths) of Plan9.

    For those hungering for something different, I highly recommend the experience.


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