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Welcome to theIcon Disti GhostBSD.png Project Page.


GhostBSD has started as a hobby in 2009 from Eric Turgeon and Francois Toussaint. See: A Brief History of GhostBSD

As main desktop Eric choose 1329059652.png MATE. Here you can get additional information about our Desktop Environment.

It is simply a question of manpower.



GhostBSD is a Unix-like operating system for desktop usage. It is based on TrueOS (a modern downstream fork of FreeBSD) and offers the MATE desktop environment. GhostBSD aims to be easy to install and offer an out of the box desktop system that is easy to use. The project goal is to combine security, privacy, stability, usability, openness, freedom and to be available for everybody free of charge.


While GhostBSD supports all the features of the version of FreeBSD that it is built from, it also offers several features on top of that. The project offers live media that support booting into a graphical desktop. The X11 system is configured automatically during startup and usually does not require any manual configuration. An easy to use graphical installer assists in installing the operating system.

A default installation comes with a fair amount of useful software pre-installed. The user experience is further enhanced by tools like the Networkmgr which are developed as part of the GhostBSD project.


The name GhostBSD originally stood for GNOME hosted on BSD since it begun as an effort to provide a ready-to-run GNOME desktop on FreeBSD. The main desktop has been changed to the GNOME 2 fork MATE and the project offers alternative desktop environments like XFCE as well. These desktops have in common that they use the GTK toolkit and therefore GhostBSD now means GTK hosted on BSD.


Concept before GhostBSD 18.10[edit]

Before GhostBSD 18.10 GhostBSD was based on FreeBSD directly. So GhostBSD was based on FreeBSD RELEASE until GhostBSD 11.1. Till then there was not such a platform like TrueOS. Mid-2018 they came up with their changed concept to be a platform for other projects. TrueOS was based on FreeBSD CURRENT.

Concept Change with GhostBSD 19.09[edit]

What has changed since 19.04

GhostBSD 19.09 is built from TrueOS/FreeBSD 12.0-STABLE.[1]

Version history[edit]

Version Released
GhostBSD 20.01 2010-01[2]
GhostBSD 19.10 2019-10 [3]
GhostBSD 19.09 2019-09[4]
GhostBSD 19.04 2019-04[5]
GhostBSD 18.12 2018-12[6]
GhostBSD 18.10 2018-11[7]
GhostBSD 11.1 2017-11[8]
GhostBSD 10.3 2016-08
GhostBSD 10.1 2015-09
GhostBSD 4.0 2014-09
GhostBSD 3.5 2013-10
GhostBSD 3.1 2013-06
GhostBSD 3.0 2013-03
GhostBSD 2.5 2012-01
GhostBSD 2.0 2011-03
GhostBSD 1.5 2010-07
GhostBSD 1.0 2010-03


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The Base[edit]

It is BSD[edit]

GhostBSD is derived from FreeBSD, and its roots go back to the University of California Berkeley Unix Research. Historically it was referred to as "BSD Unix" or "Berkeley Unix." However, today it is simply called BSD for Berkeley Software Distribution.


GhostBSD is based on TrueOS with FreeBSD 12 STABLE with our twist to it. We are still continuing to use TrueOS for OpenRC, and the new package's system for the base system that is built from ports.
In short: GhsotBSD = FreeBSD + Stuff that is not suported on FreeBSD

GhostBSD is becoming a slow-moving rolling release base on the latest TrueOS with FreeBSD 12 STABLE. When FreeBSD 13 STABLE gets released, GhostBSD will be upgraded to TrueOS with FreeBSD 13 STABLE.

Additional explanation from Eric on Telegram on 03.02.2010 at 20:24:
FreeBSD 12.1-STABLE is not a release, is a deleveloping branch of FreeBSD 12 and FreeBSD 13 CURRENT is of the upcomming FreeBSD 13.0. I am rolling release of the FreeBSD 12 STABLE branch, and not of the RELEASE branch. In sort we have new feature before FreeBSD 12.2 release. STABLE basicaly mean stable ABI.

More to FreeBSD[edit]

GhostBSD Project Goals[edit]

I did like Ubuntu a lot, and I thought why is there no project like Ubuntu in the BSD world, so that was about that time that the idea GhostBSD started Interview with founder and maintainer of GhostBSD, Eric Turgeon

The goals of the GhostBSD Project are to provide:

  • A simple, elegant desktop environment to support your day-to-day computing needs.
  • Easy to use software management program for installing any of the 32,000 available applications.
  • Linux binary compatibility to run almost any GNU/Linux application.
  • Well-designed graphical installation programs.
  • Automatic hardware (e.g., video, sound, network, devices) detection and configuration.
  • A hardened 64-bit BSD system that is unaffected by malware, viruses, spyware, and malfeasance.
  • OpenZFS support for modern amd64 systems.
  • The best user experience possible.

In the Press about GhostBSD[edit]


Main Developers[edit]


Community Developers[edit]

There are a lot of developers around the world who are interested in GhostBSD and show how to install other desktop environments.

See also: Community Build

Community Release XFCE[edit]

All Desktops[edit]

See Desktop Environment


  • Base system: In steps from FreeBSD/TrueOS STABLE X to FreeBSD/TrueOS STABLE X+1
  • Applications: As rolling releases, nearly weekly and sometimes shorter. Every time if there are new updates from upstream available and ported to FreeBSD and GhostBSD.


If you have some issues you can report bugs here.

This is the pace to manage bugs and new features for GhostBSD.

Please before reporting your bug, please make sure there is no related bug reported.

If you need help please visit or

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