It’s that time again. We’re looking back at how we advocated for FreeBSD over the past year. We began the year like any other with many in-person events on the horizon, celebrations planned for our upcoming 20th anniversary and energy that comes with introducing new people and companies to FreeBSD. Then March rolled around, and well, you know rest. Thankfully, the Foundation team has been able to work together on new and expanded ways to spread the word about FreeBSD. Take a look at what we’ve been doing.

20th Anniversary:

March 15, 2020 marked the 20th Anniversary of the FreeBSD Foundation.You may have noticed our commemorative logo that launched earlier this year.  It’s hard to believe we’ve been supporting the FreeBSD Project for so long. Take a moment to read more about the anniversary in the letter penned by Founder and Foundation board president Justin Gibbs.

New Look:

In July, we unveiled a new look for our website.  We hope you’ve found the new site easier to read and navigate. We’ve also added a FreeBSD Resources section that includes links to our how-to guides, webinars, and other community training resources. We are continuing to add to this site, so if you have a blog, youtube channel, or other training materials you’d like us to include, please let us know.

Events: 

The event landscape definitely looked different in 2020, but not being able to travel did not completely hinder our ability to spread the word about FreeBSD. Before everything shut down we were able to attend 4 in-person events including organizing and presenting at the first ever FreeBSD Mini-Conf at LinuxConf AU in Gold Coast Australia. We also held a “Getting Started with FreeBSD Workshop” at SCALE 18x in addition to giving a talk, representing FreeBSD at the Expo and holding a “Why FreeBSD is For Me” BoF. As events moved to an online format, we again sponsored BSDCan 2020, and a 27 years of FreeBSD webinar as part of the LInux Professional Institute series. We also presented at the Linux Foundation’s Open Source Summit North America and at OSI’s State of the Source conference. In late summer, we began working with the committee to plan the first ever online 2020 FreeBSD Vendor Summit. The Summit took place November 11-13, 2020. We loved being able to bring the summit to folks who wouldn’t normally be able to attend. 

Webinars, How-To Guides, Blogs, and Case Studies:

As mentioned above in order to continue our commitment to spreading the word about FreeBSD and bring the community together, we’ve increased our non-event related activities. In July, we began our FreeBSD Fridays series of 1 hour, entry level FreeBSD webinars. The sessions have ranged from topics such as an Introduction to FreeBSD itself, to an introduction to security on FreeBSD, ZFS on FreeBSD, CheriBSD and more. You can find the entire library of sessions on our website or at the Project’s YouTube channel.  We’ve also helped the project with their launch of FreeBSD Office Hours. The Q&A sessions typically take place every other Wednesday and provide the opportunity to bring your toughest questions to members of the FreeBSD community. Past topics have ranged from general Q&A to meeting the new FreeBSD Core team to a Q&A with us. Find out more on the office hours wiki. We also launched two new case studies in 2020. It’s always exciting when companies are willing to share why and how they use FreeBSD to great success. Check out the Netflix and Mellanox case studies and stay tuned for more studies in 2021.

In order to provide even more content to the community, the Foundation brought on a technical writer. He’s authored a number of blogs including  POWER to the People: Making FreeBSD a First Class Citizen on POWER and 5x if_bridge Performance Improvement

FreeBSD Journal

You can still access the FreeBSD Journal for Free. We’re very excited to be able to bring all of the informative articles to the community at no cost.We’ve also made it easier to access individual articles. If you haven’t read it yet, please take a look and share with your friends and colleagues. 

Newsletters and Status Reports

We continued to produce Newsletters and Quarterly Status reports. The newsletter is an excellent way to find out about upcoming grant and CFP submission deadlines, get ongoing updates from our software development team, and find out more about where we’re going and where we’ve been to promote FreeBSD around the world.  If you haven’t yet signed up to receive updates from us, please do so at the bottom of this page. A full list of what we’ve accomplished by quarter can be found here

As you can see, the Foundation team had a very busy and productive 2020 in spite of everything.  We were able to accomplish so much this year, in part, because of the financial support from the FreeBSD community. Your commitment to the Project is truly inspiring. Thank you for your continued support and if you’re able, please consider making a donation today. We can’t do this without you!

– contributed by Anne Dickison