[FreeBSD-Announce] FreeBSD Quarterly Status Report April-June, 2012
pgj at freebsd.org
Sun Jan 13 21:58:52 UTC 2013
FreeBSD Quarterly Status Report April-June, 2012
This report covers FreeBSD-related projects between April and June
2012. This quarter was highlighted by having a new Core Team elected,
which took office on July 11th to start its work with a relatively high
number of new members. Note that this is the second of the three
reports planned for 2012.
Thanks to all the reporters for the excellent work! This report
contains 17 entries and we hope you enjoy reading it.
Please note that the deadline for submissions covering the period
between July and December 2012 is February 17th, 2013.
* FreeBSD Services Control (fsc)
* Replacing the Regular Expression Code
FreeBSD Team Reports
* FreeBSD Documentation Project
* The FreeBSD Core Team
* The FreeBSD Port Management Team
* FreeBSD/at91 Improvements
* Multipath TCP (MPTCP) for FreeBSD
* SMP-Friendly pf(4)
* The FreeBSD Japanese Documentation Project
* FreeBSD/arm on ARM Fast Models Simulator for Cortex-A15 MPCore
* BSD-licensed Sort Utility (GNU sort(1) Replacement)
* FreeBSD Haskell Ports
* Xorg on FreeBSD
* BSD-Day 2012
Contact: Gábor Páli <pgj at FreeBSD.org>
For this year, we moved the time of the event earlier by six months, so
it was held on May 5, 2012 and it was co-located with the Austrian
Linuxweeks (Linuxwochen Österreich) in Vienna. We had many sponsors,
like the freshly joined FreeBSD Foundation, iXsystems, FreeBSDMall, BSD
Magazine, allBSD.de Projekt, that enabled us to continue our previously
launched series of multi-project BSD developer summits all around
To kick off, there was a "stammtisch" (local beer meetup) organized in
the downtown of Vienna, at Kolar on the Friday evening before the event
-- as usual. Then it was followed by the event on Saturday that brought
many interesting topics from the world of FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD:
running NetBSD as an embedded system for managing VOIP applications,
introduction to the Capsicum security framework, relayd(8), the load
balancer and proxy solution for OpenBSD, status update of the
developments around the FreeBSD ports tree, using DVCSs in clouds,
firewalling with pfSense, and mfsBSD. Please consult the links in the
report for the details.
BSD-licensed Sort Utility (GNU sort(1) Replacement)
Contact: Oleg Moskalenko <oleg.moskalenko at citrix.com>
Contact: Gábor Kövesdán <gabor at FreeBSD.org>
BSD sort(1) has been made the default sort utility in 10-CURRENT. It is
compatible with the latest GNU sort(1), version 8.15, except that the
multi-threaded mode is not enabled by default.
1. When the track record of the BSD sort(1) allows, remove GNU sort(1)
2. Improve reliability of the multi-threaded sort and investigate the
possibility of making it the default compilation mode.
3. Investigate possibility of factoring out the sort functionality
into a standalone library so that other utilities can also make use
FreeBSD Documentation Project
Contact: <freebsd-doc at FreeBSD.org>
We continue to make progress in committing the work produced as part of
Google Code-In 2011; an overview of the status is at
http://wiki.freebsd.org/GoogleCodeIn/2011Status. Doc committers and
GCIN mentors are encouraged to go through the list and help shepherd
outstanding tasks into the tree.
We are planning a full day of Documentation Summit on the day preceding
the August 2012 DevSummit in Cambridge, UK. This follows a successful
DocSummit day held at BSDCan in May 2012. Further details are available
A doc sprint took place over IRC (#bsddocs on EFnet) in early July,
setting out plans for reviving the marketing team and a strong desire
for a new, more organized website.
A lot of progress and momentum has built up with creating and updating
documentation and website content over the last few months. Also read
the doceng report for the recent infrastructure improvements.
Anyone wishing to help with this effort is welcome to join us and say
hello either on the freebsd-doc mailing list, or #bsddocs on EFnet IRC.
1. Review the website content and remove outdated parts or update when
2. Go through the doc idea list on the wiki and start working them
FreeBSD Haskell Ports
Contact: Gábor PÁLI <pgj at FreeBSD.org>
Contact: Ashish SHUKLA <ashish at FreeBSD.org>
We are proud to announce that the FreeBSD Haskell Team has updated the
Haskell Platform to 2012.2.0.0, GHC to 7.4.1 as well as updated
existing ports to their latest stable versions. We also added a number
of new Haskell ports, and their count in FreeBSD Ports tree is now 336.
1. Test GHC to work with clang/LLVM.
2. Add an option to the lang/ghc port to be able to build it with
already installed GHC instead of requiring a separate GHC bootstrap
3. Commit pending Haskell ports to the FreeBSD Ports tree.
4. Add more ports to the Ports Collection.
FreeBSD Services Control (fsc)
Contact: Tom Rhodes <trhodes at FreeBSD.org>
FSC has been moved into the ports system (see sysutils/fsc) and
continues to improve outside of the ports tree. Some interesting work
is being done in the area of services control, system boot, and a
simplification of the process. Stay tuned for more information in
status reports that follow.
1. Test, test, test. Feedback is really important to this project.
FreeBSD/arm on ARM Fast Models Simulator for Cortex-A15 MPCore Processor
Contact: Zbigniew Bodek <zbb at semihalf.com>
Contact: Rafal Jaworowski <raj at semihalf.com>
Contact: Tomasz Nowicki <tn at semihalf.com>
ARM Fast Models is platform which helps software developers debug
systems in parallel with SoC design, speeding up and improving system
development. This work is bringing up FreeBSD on ARM Fast Models system
based on ARM Cortex-A15 and peripheral components. It works in single
user mode, using a compiled-in kernel RAM disk minimal root file
Current FreeBSD support includes:
* L1, L2 cache, Branch Predictor
* Dual-core (SMP) support setup in WB cache mode
* Cortex-A15 integrated Generic Timer
* Drivers for ARM peripheral components:
+ PL011 UART controller
+ PL390 GIC - Generic Interrupt Controller
+ SP804 Dual Timer
* Quad-core (SMP) support
* Multi-user mode
Contact: Warner Losh <imp at FreeBSD.org>
FreeBSD's Atmel support has languished for some time. A number of
improvements were urgently needed as demand for newer SoCs has
materialized. New SoC support is not hard, but it does wind up copying
a lot of code. I have started down the path to make it easier to do. I
had planned on making it table driven. But then I discovered with dts
files that Atmel was producing.
So, I plan on moving to using Atmel's .dsti files, or variations on
them. They have .dsti files for all the AT91SAM9 parts. This should
allow us to support new SoCs and boards faster.
However, there are some challenges with this approach. Pin multiplexing
seems undefined in Atmel's dts file. Only a few of the devices are
well-defined at the present time. And the encoding seems to be
So we have a target-rich port that is quite ripe for refactoring.
1. Update the base system libfdt to a version that supports include.
2. Write a .dtsi for Atmel AT91RM9200.
3. Write .dti files for all supported boards.
4. Help sort out the pin multiplexing issue.
5. Refactor existing board files to make new ones easier in the
6. Knock yourself out and implement board support for new CPUs.
Contact: KDE FreeBSD <kde at FreeBSD.org>
The team has made many releases and upstreamed many fixes and patches.
The latest round of releases include:
* KDE SC: 4.8.3, 4.8.4 (in ports) and 4.8.95 (in area51)
* Qt: 4.8.1, 4.8.2
* PyQt: 4.9.1; SIP: 4.13.2; QScintilla 2.6.1
* KDevelop: 2.3.1; KDevPlatform: 1.3.1
* Calligra: 2.4.2, 2.4.3
* Amarok: 2.5.90 (in area51)
* CMake: 2.8.8
* Digikam (and KIPI-plugins): 2.6.0
As a result -- according to PortScout -- kde@ has 393 ports, of which
91% are up-to-date.
The team is always looking for more testers and porters so please
contact us and visit our home page.
1. Test KDE SC 4.8.95.
2. Test KDE PIM 4.8.95.
3. Update out-of-date ports, see PortScout for a list.
Multipath TCP (MPTCP) for FreeBSD
Contact: Nigel Williams <njwilliams at swin.edu.au>
Contact: Lawrence Stewart <lastewart at swin.edu.au>
Contact: Grenville Armitage <garmitage at swin.edu.au>
Work is underway to create an IETF draft-compatible Multipath TCP
implementation for the FreeBSD kernel.
A key goal of the project is to create a research platform to
investigate a range of multipath related transport issues including
congestion control, retransmission strategy and packet scheduling
policy. We also aim to provide full interoperability with the Linux
kernel implementation being developed at Université catholique de
We expect to release code and results at the project's home page as it
Contact: David Naylor <naylor.b.david at gmail.com>
Since the last update there has been 2 feature releases and 4 bug-fix
releases. A highlight of the changes made:
* Support has been added for:
* -j: controlling concurrency per stage
* pkgng: next generation package manager
* installing packages via repository
* dynamic defaults (loaded from /etc/make.conf)
* new options framework (aka OptionsNG)
Some of the fixes include:
* correct assertions
* correct build logic
* retry when kevent receives EINTR
* correctly detecting installed ports
* many fixes in the build logic
A benchmark was run timing portbuilder against a standard ports build
of KDE (x11/kde4) in a clean chroot(8) environment. Portbuilder
achieved a build time of 2:21:16 compared to ports build time of
4:47:21 for an decreased build time of 51% from using portbuilder.
Contact: Bernhard Froehlich <decke at FreeBSD.org>
There was good progress in the last half a year and a lot of support
from different parties to make redports a stable and fast service.
A long known security concern within tinderbox was raised at the
BSD-Day in Vienna which was addressed by beat. That improves security
and isolation of the concurrent running jobs a lot and gives me peace
We also recently got two beefy machines from the FreeBSD Foundation
which increases computing power a lot. So no more backlogs and your
jobs finish much quicker.
But as usual now that we have enough power I was able to make another
promise come true and integrated Ports QAT functionality into redports.
Ports QAT was an automated services that did a buildtest after each
commit to the official FreeBSD ports tree. If a build fails it sends
out mails and logfiles to the committer. That finds bad commits quickly
and allows the committer to fix it before the first user notices. The
former service stopped about 2 years ago and we had no proper
replacement for that task at hand. Now that this is fully integrated
into redports it also gives us all the nice benefits of a common
1. Automatic build incoming patches from Ports PRs in redports and
send results to GNATS database.
2. People want an GCC testing environment on redports where all ports
are build with lang/gcc47. To make that happen we need to patch the
ports framework to handle that and correctly bootstrap with base
GCC. This also gives us the possibility to build all our binary
packages with a modern gcc and is easy to use for regular users.
Replacing the Regular Expression Code
Contact: Gábor Kövesdán <gabor at FreeBSD.org>
It has been decided to implement the optimizations and extensions as a
more isolated layer and not directly in TRE itself. Since the last
report there has been some progress in this direction and the code has
been significantly refactored. It does not work yet in this new form
but it is close to a working state. Apart from this, the multiple
pattern matching needs some debugging and some minor features are
1. Finish multiple pattern heuristic regex matching.
2. Implement GNU-specific regex extensions.
3. Test performance, standard-compliance and correct behavior.
Contact: Gleb Smirnoff <glebius at FreeBSD.org>
The project is aimed at moving the pf(4) packet filter out of single
mutex, as well as in general improving of its FreeBSD port.
The project is near its finish, the code is planned to go into head
after more testing and benchmarking. If you are interested in details,
please see the corresponding email thread on freebsd-pf (see links).
1. Rewrite the pf(4) ioctl() interface so that it does not utilize
in-kernel structures. That would make ABI more stable and ease
The FreeBSD Core Team
Contact: Core Team <core at FreeBSD.org>
The FreeBSD Project is pleased to announce the completion of the 2012
Core Team election. The FreeBSD Core Team acts as the project's "Board
of Directors" and is responsible for approving new src committers,
resolving disputes between developers, appointing sub-committees for
specific purposes (security officer, release engineering, port
managers, webmaster, et cetera), and making any other administrative or
policy decisions as needed. The Core Team has been elected by FreeBSD
developers every 2 years since 2000.
Peter Wemm rejoins the Core Team after a two-year hiatus, with new
members Thomas Abthorpe, Gavin Atkinson, David Chisnall, Attilio Rao
and Martin Wilke joining incumbents John Baldwin, Konstantin Belousov
and Hiroki Sato.
The complete newly elected core team is:
* Thomas Abthorpe <tabthorpe at FreeBSD.org>
* Gavin Atkinson <gavin at FreeBSD.org>
* John Baldwin <jhb at FreeBSD.org>
* Konstantin Belousov <kib at FreeBSD.org>
* David Chisnall <theraven at FreeBSD.org>
* Attilio Rao <attilio at FreeBSD.org>
* Hiroki Sato <hrs at FreeBSD.org>
* Peter Wemm <peter at FreeBSD.org>
* Martin Wilke <miwi at FreeBSD.org>
The new Core Team would like to thank outgoing members Wilko Bulte,
Brooks Davis, Warner Losh, Pav Lucistnik, Colin Percival and Robert
Watson for their service over the past two (and in some cases, many
The Core Team would also especially like to thank Dag-Erling Smørgrav
for running the election.
The FreeBSD Japanese Documentation Project
Contact: Hiroki Sato <hrs at FreeBSD.org>
Contact: Ryusuke Suzuki <ryusuke at FreeBSD.org>
Our translation work has slightly moved on to handbook from the www/ja
(CVS) or htdocs (SVN) subtree, since almost translated web page
contents were updated to the latest English counterparts.
During this period, we translated the 8.3-RELEASE announcement and
published it in a timely manner. Newsflash and some other updates in
the English version were also translated as soon as possible.
For FreeBSD Handbook, translation work of the "cutting-edge" and
"printing" sections have been completed. Some updates in the "linuxemu"
and "serialcomms" section were done. At this moment, "bsdinstall",
"cutting-edge", "desktop", "install", "introduction", "kernelconfig",
"mirrors", "multimedia", "pgpkeys", "ports", "printing", and "x11"
chapters are synchronized with the English versions.
1. Further translation work of outdated documents in ja_JP.eucJP
The FreeBSD Port Management Team
Contact: Thomas Abthorpe <portmgr-secretary at FreeBSD.org>
Contact: Port Management Team <portmgr at FreeBSD.org>
The ports tree slowly approaches 24,000 ports. The PR count still is
close to 1200.
In Q2 we added 7 new committers and took in one commit bit for safe
The Ports Management team have been running -exp runs on an ongoing
basis, verifying how base system updates may affect the ports tree, as
well as providing QA runs for major ports updates. Of note, -exp runs
were done for:
* automake update
* cmake update
* xorg update
* png update
* Fix make reinstall
* Implement USE_QT4 in bsd.ports.mk
* KDE4 update
* XFCE4 update
* bison update
* perl5.14 as default
* ruby1.9 as default
* ruby1.8 update
* bsdsort regression test
A lot of focus during this period was put into getting the ports tree
into a ready state for FreeBSD 9.1.
A significant step forward was the implementation of OptionsNG.
A record number of Port Managers attended BSDCan 2012, with five being
present to partake in the week of events, culminating in a portmgr PR
closing session that dealt with 18 PRs in one day. You can see a group
photo at . While you are there, please click on the "Like" icon.
Beat Gaetzi has been doing ongoing tests with the ports tree to ensure
a smooth transition from CVS to Subversion. The tree was successfully
migrated the weekend of June 14, 2012.
1. Looking for help getting ports to build with clang.
2. Looking for help fixing ports broken on CURRENT. (List needs
3. Looking for help with Tier-2 architectures.
4. ports broken by src changes.
5. ports failing on pointyhat.
6. ports failing on pointyhat-west.
7. ports that are marked as BROKEN.
8. When did that port break?
9. Most ports PRs are assigned, we now need to focus on testing,
committing and closing.
Xorg on FreeBSD
Contact: Martin Wilke <miwi at FreeBSD.org>
Contact: Koop Mast <kwm at FreeBSD.org>
Contact: Niclas Zeising <zeising at FreeBSD.org>
Contact: Eitan Adler <eadler at FreeBSD.org>
During the beginning of this period, an update to the xorg distribution
for FreeBSD was made, dubbed xorg 7.5.2. This update included a new
flag, WITH_NEW_XORG, to get a more recent xorg distribution for those
with modern hardware. To get KMS support for recent Intel graphics
chipsets WITH_KMS must also be set. This requires a recent FreeBSD
10-CURRENT or FreeBSD 9-STABLE.
1. Switch to use FreeGLUT instead of libGLUT, since the latter is old
and has there is no upstream support or releases any more. Work on
this is mostly done.
2. Update the xorg distribution to what is in the development
repository. The xorg project recently did a new release, and the
development repository contains this release. It needs more testing
before it can be merged, and a CFT was sent out in the beginning of
June. Work on this is ongoing.
3. Decide how to handle the new and old xorg distributions. In recent
xorg, a lot of legacy driver support has been dropped, therefore we
need to maintain two xorg distributions to not loose a lot of
hardware drivers. Currently, this is done by setting the flag
WITH_NEW_XORG in /etc/make.conf, but a more practical solution is
needed. This is especially important since the flag is not very
user friendly, and since there currently will be no official
packages for the new distribution.
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