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Old 6th October 2009
lionsong lionsong is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2009
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Default Undertaking computer science degree, which BSD for learning professional assembly?

Iv previously used openbsd extensively for my desktop system, only changing to slackware linux recently as i am now undertaking a computer science degree, and wanted to make sure i could follow the assembler based components of the course. (This isnt to say assembly on linux = FTW and assembly on bsd = fail, just most of the documentation iv found surrounding assembly and unix is weighted towards linux.)

However i really want to switch back to openbsd.

Im not running a server at home (yet) and im not studying cryptography in any way, apart from for my own interests, but im very much inspired by the principles of standardization and code correctness the openbsd team expouse - this to me seems to be a set of "good practice" habits that as a fledgling programmer i would do well to get into.

Also the portability of openbsd is going to be a hell of alot of fun when we start working with embedded systems. The inclusion of the full GNU toolchain and a strict adherence to free-software also leads me to think openbsd is an ideal OS to learn programming (the right way).

Iv read several documents on the net, though nothing signifcantly insightful as to how nasm or asm differ between linux and BSD (lots of references to how a.out is outdated compared to ELF but little else for the neophyte like myself).
The freebsd project maintains a developers handbook which contains some decent information, but again im still left a little in the dark, most likely due to my inexeprience with assembly language and what it requires.

SO my question is this - what do i, as a novice assembly programmer need to watch out for when using nasm or asm on openbsd, or would i be better off using FreeBSD for the time being? At least that way im still utilising a BSD methodology. Would it be better i just stick with linux?

Hope iv not confused any matters here, as i pointed out i am a novice programmer so all and any help is welcome!
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