As the founder of PC-BSD, what can you tell us about your decision to start this project? How did you get involved with BSD systems, and what drove you into creating one?
I first ran into FreeBSD back in the mid nineties, when I started working at a local dial-up ISP. At the time it was my first experience with any *nix related system, and I can still recall how exciting it was to be able to log in remotely and run “pine” for this new thing called “E-Mail”.
I decided to create PC-BSD in early 2005, after running various Linux desktops, and continually having problems with them. In particular what drove me was how package management was performed in all open-source desktops at the time, with the idea that every package is a part of your “base-system”, and an upgrade of one thing could trigger a chain of dependencies causing numerous other things to be touched as well. This felt WAY too familiar, especially after coming off the years of “DLL Hell” in Windows desktops and the problems that caused. Instead I wanted to implement a “clean” package system, which kept the applications separated away from the core desktop, reducing the potential for “Libary Hell” and dependency related issues. Thus the PBI (Push Button Installer) package format was born and desiring to build upon a stable API and base-system, FreeBSD was the logical choice.