FreeBSD Vs. Linux: Which One is Better?

FreeBSD Vs. Linux: Which One is Better

Let’s evaluate some of these two Unix systems’ most salient features to see how they compare.

Running System

When comparing Operating Systems, FreeBSD has the advantage. This is because Linux isn’t a complete operating system. Actually, it’s a kernel. It is a typical misunderstanding for consumers to refer to Linux as a whole operating system. Typically, it is included with a Linux distribution that also contains system software and libraries. Linux is referred to as “GNU/Linux” by the Free Software Foundation because the majority of them are from the GNU project.

Several well-known Linux distributions are:

  • Ubuntu
  • CentOS
  • Fedora
  • Ubuntu Linux
  • Mint Linux
  • Debian


Due to the fact that both FreeBSD and Linux are open sources, there is a tie in this category. But be prepared to pay for accessories like hardware and support.

Both Linux and FreeBSD’s source codes are open for anybody to use, alter, share, or view. Any improvements to Linux, nevertheless, must be made available to the public. FreeBSD avoids this, which provides it a benefit to businesses wishing to utilize it in their products.


Linux is somewhat less secure than FreeBSD. Security was one of the cornerstones upon which the FreeBSD project was built. Thus, it is not surprising that they have an advantage in this area. It already has excellent security protections built in.

Not that Linux isn’t very secure—far from it. You can install almost any security feature you desire because it is very flexible. But FreeBSD offers stronger security overall than other operating systems.

Support for Hardware & Architecture

When it comes to hardware and architectural support, Linux clearly wins. Linux is compatible with a wide range of systems, but FreeBSD is not. Therefore, if compatibility is an issue for you, Linux has a higher probability of working for you than FreeBSD.

The drawback of this is that Linux had to give up performance to guarantee that it would run on various devices. FreeBSD, on the other hand, doesn’t need to sacrifice performance because it only supports a small number of systems.

Given that Linux is more widely used than FreeBSD, manufacturers frequently develop hardware and software with Linux support in mind. As a result, you must think about how you want to use your system. For instance, Linux will handle graphics driver upgrades considerably more quickly than FreeBSD if you frequently require them.

Most of these differences, if not all of them, as well as FreeBSD’s support deficiencies, mostly revolve around desktop components such as peripherals and graphics cards. Given that FreeBSD is primarily a server operating system, this makes it logical.


Both Linux and FreeBSD are very reliable operating systems. FreeBSD, nevertheless, would get the nod if we had to choose one of them. This reinforces the idea that FreeBSD is more structured. The additional components a user is using may compromise Linux’s reliability. FreeBSD’s default setup is more dependable since it is a whole operating system. Stability isn’t something either lacks, though, on the whole.


Although there is no concrete proof that FreeBSD performs any better than Linux, the majority of individuals who have tried both contend that FreeBSD is superior to Linux. Another situation where Linux’s adaptability works against it is this one. FreeBSD is more efficient. This enables it to operate as intended, which leads to generally greater performance.

Compared to Linux, FreeBSD has a reduced latency time. The term “latency time” describes the interval between an interrupt and the start of the processor’s processing code. On Linux, however, most programs operate more quickly.


FreeBSD employs a custom BSD license. Users now have unrestricted access to the operating system and are able to change the code any way they see appropriate. They can publish and share this source code if they want. Alternatively, they have the right to keep it to themselves.

Linux makes use of the GNU GPL license (General Public License). Under the terms of this license, users are permitted to alter the source code. The primary distinction is that you are legally required to share your source code if you make changes to the Linux source code. This strategy has both benefits and drawbacks. 

Users cannot create a closed-source system from Linux, which is one drawback. However, one benefit is that subsequent users may build on previous efforts and advance the system. This is a key factor in why the Linux community is so active. Because most users won’t alter the source code, they won’t need to worry about this distinction. 

Use FreeBSD rather than Linux if you do want to create a closed-source system from an open-source one.


From a user perspective, the majority of users would deem Linux’s default BASH shell to be superior to FreeBSD’s “tcsh” shell. This is due to the “tcsh” shell’s somewhat dated nature. On Unix systems that are compatible, the BASH shell is very flexible and lets users accomplish almost anything. But that doesn’t negate how great the “tcsh” shell is. To use it, you simply need greater information and comprehension. Finally, BASH is also simple to install on FreeBSD.

Filing system

Another tie would exist in this category. Effective file systems are utilized by Linux and FreeBSD alike. FreeBSD includes ZFS (Zettabyte file system). This method is unquestionably among the finest for long-term data storage. 

It has integrated volume management. This enables users to build several file systems that share a single storage pool. It guarantees that there won’t be any data loss due to physical mistakes, improper handling, or data corruption. The default file system for most Linux distributions is Ext4. Although less dynamic than ZFS, it is remarkably stable.

Manufacturer Assistance

This round goes to Linux. Running Linux on servers is directly supported by IBM, Dell, and HP. However, these servers may also run FreeBSD, and many companies offer support for all of them. To obtain a sense of the hardware that is currently supported, you may also look at FreeBSD’s hardware suppliers.


You must take into account two main factors when thinking about updates: the updates’ convenience and the rate at which they become accessible. When it comes to convenience, FreeBSD triumphs. Users may decide which updates they want and don’t want to get. You can pick simply sub-components or just essential components like the kernel, src, and world. or choose them all. Then, applying these updates is easy.

When it comes to how quickly updates are made accessible, Linux triumphs. Open-source businesses have a lot of motivation to produce updates rapidly. As a result, they are accessible quickly after being required. The development and distribution of these updates can take longer on FreeBSD, but as both Linux and FreeBSD receive their updates from upstream projects, they usually arrive at the same time.

Package Administration

On FreeBSD, installing software packages is simple. Nearly 40,000 ports are available in the FreeBSD Ports collection and may be swiftly deployed by users and administrators. Each port includes the required changes to guarantee that the user’s system can utilize the source code.

The package managers for Linux aren’t always reliable. Some are quite good, while others are not. Everything is based on your distribution. The finest examples include:

  • Red Hat RPM
  • Package Manager Pacman
  • pkgsrc
  • Portage


FreeBSD is governed by its Core Team of nine individuals and has about 500 global committers. The master source code repositories are developed, improved, and bug-fixed by this team. Most people who commit are unpaid volunteers. 

Every two years, active committers elect the Core Team members. Linus Torvalds, in contrast, is in charge of, modifies, and maintains the Linux kernel (the original creator). When it comes to new features for Linux releases, he gets the last word.

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Written by Gena Jones

Gena Jones ensures the work that everyone in the company is putting is of good quality and won’t be compromised.

Gena Jones
Gena Jones ensures the work that everyone in the company is putting is of good quality and won't be compromised.