OpenBSD Desktop Guide

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How usable is OpenBSD as a desktop operating system?

From my experience OpenBSD is a very usable a desktop operating system.

However it's wise to know that you use case and hardware are two factors that will play a role in your experience.

I use ThinkPads and old MacBooks, on the ThinkPads I have never had a problem even the most annoying parts like wifi work out of the box.

However with more obscure hardware expect to potentially run into driver issues.

Like with pretty much any operating system the graphics and wifi cards will cause you the most grief

so if you are contemplating using OpenBSD as a desktop operating system, be sure to inspect the output of

to see your hardware and the OpenBSD compatibility

Some Useful Commands To Know When Using OpenBSD As A Desktop

As you will see down below sysctl is used a lot in OpenBSD, it's a very useful tool.

sysctl hw.smt=1
By default on OpenBSD you wont have acess to all the cores on your cpu this will allow access to all cores.

sysctl hw.diskames
This will show all the disks connected to your system, similar to lsblk.

sysctl hw.sensors
This will show information about the hardware like cpu temperature and fan rpm.

disklabel sdX
This will show all the partitions on a disk, the X in sdX meaning the number of the disk.

Use this to adjust audio volume, for example
sndioctl output.level=+0.1
to increase the volume by 10

Disks in OpenBSD

OpenBSD does things differently to Linux when it comes to disks and it's useful to know.

To mount a drive in OpenBSD you'll need to know a few things first use sysctl to find the name of the disk and then disklabel to find the partition you want to mount.