[Semibug] OS choice for computer illiterate family members?

Aaron Lopez vieroninfo at gmail.com
Sat May 20 20:21:30 EDT 2023

Hi Kyle,

I know I'm responding late but I would like to share my experience as well.

I have personally been using FreeBSD both on my home computer (for at least
a couple of years) and work laptop (for more than that) and have had an
excellent desktop experience so far (videoconferencing, firefox, chromium,
libreoffice and a "chromium linux browser" - useful for things like Netflix
ecc. -  thanks to FreeBSD's optional binary compatibility with Linux).
Coupled with ZFS which makes system upgrades and software updates feel safe
I would actually consider installing the system for family members I can
assist since I'm beginning to feel more and more comfortable with the

That said, regarding operating systems that are supposed to be more user
friendly, during the presentation on Intel and opensource, which I think a
few of us attended, the main speaker  Katherine Druckman  mentioned (if I
remember correctly) that she uses a system called PureOS. Now, it is a
system I have never personally used and only heard about from her talk but
I find it interesting that it is one of the few systems GNU recommends (
https://www.gnu.org/distros/free-distros.html) and it seems like a simple
system to use and maintain: I think updates should be quite simple even
though not automatic. If I were in your same situation I would personally
check it out as well.

Looking forward to hearing how it goes. I think that the problem you
presented is one of the most interesting type of conversations regarding
computers there can be.

Kind regards,

On Sat, May 20, 2023 at 11:57 PM Kyle Willett <kyle.d.willett at gmail.com>

> Thanks Nick!
> Even though OpenBSD is probably more secure when patched than say
> ChromeOS Flex, Flex auto updates itself and I don't have to describe
> over a phone how to do pkg_add -u and how to become root with doas.  I
> already have to do that with my mom on Xubuntu.  So I guess in this
> case the less secure option is actually more secure?  His AMD rig
> should get patches from Google till at least 2026 judging by their
> earliest EOL dates of supported devices on their website.  He has
> agreed to let me update the system next time I'm in town in two weeks
> so we will see how it goes!
> Thanks to everyone who has given me advice!  I really appreciate this
> group that is SEMIBUG and the, I'll say it, friends I've made in it
> and lessons learned!
> Thanks,
> Kyle Willett
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> Semibug at lists.nycbug.org
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