Jul 20, 2023


This is a simplified 3D world with alpha-blended objects that look kind of like fireworks or sparks. It also has a number of effects built in, such as fading, blurring, fire “heat”, and zooming.

It serves no purpose except to look pretty. The source-code is also well-documented, so someone might find it useful in learning SDL routines.

In our ongoing series exploring FreeBSD ports, today let’s focus on a hidden gem- “Explosions”- this quirky little tool from the misc category that could bring colors to your FreeBSD experience.


[Explosions]https//freebsdsoftware.org/misc/explosions.html is a simple animation program, primarily designed to serve as a screensaver or a fun application that can run on your FreeBSD system. It is part of the FreeBSD ports collection, an assembly of thousands of third-party applications that have been made ready for installation on FreeBSD.


To install the Explosions port, you can use either the binary package method or the ports collection. For this article, we will demonstrate both methods.

  1. Binary Package Method

The binary package system uses pkg, the FreeBSD package management tool. To install Explosions using pkg, open your terminal and type

pkg install explosions
  1. Ports Collection Method

First, navigate to the Explosions directory

cd /usr/ports/misc/explosions/

Then compile and install the port using the following command

make install clean

You’ll be asked to configure some options relating to how you’d like to build and install the software. Leave these at their defaults unless you have specific requirements.


To run Explosions, use the following command in your terminal


The program will start running, and your screen will be filled with colorful explosion animations. To stop the program, simply press CTRL+C.

Benefits of Explosions

Even though Explosions is essentially a visual treat rather than a productivity tool, it reflects the playful side of FreeBSD. Meeting an unexpected need - making the user’s screen into a fun, animated festival of colors, it indirectly gives an enduring impression about the versatility of FreeBSD ports collection.

Other Interesting FreeBSD Ports

The FreeBSD ports collection has various categories containing tools spanning diverse functionality domains. For example, under security, there’s a powerful port named [nmap]https//freebsdsoftware.org/security/nmap.html. Nmap is an open-source utility for network exploration and security auditing. It can also help you discover what services are running on your system and how they’re configured, it’s a must-try for any FreeBSD user interested in IT security.


Exploring and utilizing FreeBSD Ports Collection is an exciting voyage. While there many serious, powerful tools and utilities, there also exist ports like Explosions. A simple, entertaining, and colorful terminal-based animation program that adds an unexpected and joyful twist to experience of FreeBSD.

Whether you are a developer, a system administrator, or simply a computer enthusiast, FreeBSD and its ports collection have something for everyone. Be sure to follow our series as we continue to journey into the fascinating world of FreeBSD ports.

Checkout these related ports:
  • Zoneinfo - Updated timezone definitions
  • Zine - Simple and opinionated tool to build your own magazine
  • Ytree - DOS-XTREE(tm) look-a-like file manager
  • Yaunc - Yet another uptimes.net client
  • Xtypo - X-based keyboard trainer
  • Xtar - View and manipulate contents of a tar file
  • Xtail - Watches the growth of files or directories
  • Xplr - Hackable, minimal, fast TUI file explorer
  • Xosd - X11 on-screen-display program and library
  • Xless - X11-based viewer for text files
  • Xiphos - Bible interface utilizing the sword framework
  • Xgboost - Scalable, Portable and Distributed Gradient Boosting (GBDT, GBRT, GBM)
  • Xgas - The animated simulation of an ideal gas
  • Xfce4-wm-themes - Additional themes for xfwm4
  • Xfce4-weather-plugin - Weather plugin for the Xfce panel