The future of portmaster

Kevin Oberman rkoberman at
Tue May 30 16:52:19 UTC 2017

On Tue, May 30, 2017 at 7:15 AM, Anton Shterenlikht <mexas at>

> >From adamw at Tue May 30 15:03:31 2017
> >
> >The ports tree continues to evolve. Major new features are planned and in
> the process of being implemented. These changes will break all the
> port-building tools.
> oy vei
> >poudriere and synth are actively developed, so they will quickly support
> the new changes. portmaster and portupgrade are no longer being actively
> developed, so it is anticipated that they will stop working until somebody
> fixes them (if at all).
> I last used poudriere a couple years back.
> It is much more involved than portmaster
> (obviously, these 2 tools are not doing the same job)
> >So no, portmaster isn't going away. But, there's no guarantee that it
> will keep working. We strongly, strongly advise everyone to use poudriere
> or synth to build their ports, and then plain old "pkg upgrade" to handle
> updates.
> because my experience of poudriere was mixed,
> I haven't used it at all on amd64.
> pkg is great. And when occasionally I need
> non-default options I use portmaster.
> >
> >The vast majority of problems reported on this mailing list exist only in
> portmaster/portupgrade, because they do not do clean builds. At this point,
> portmaster should only be used by people with enough ports development
> experience to understand and mitigate conflicts and various build errors.
> I agree that a dirty environement is mostly
> the source of bad portmaster builds.
> However, to create the whole poudriere enviroment
> to build a port a week, or maybe a month, seems
> like an overkill.
> Yes, I know, it's a volunteer project, things
> evolve, unless somebody steps in...
> If my recollection of poudriere is correct,
> I'll need a separate ports tree?
> And if I only need to build a single port
> with custom settings, I'll have to start
> every time from scratch?
> And if I want to use this single port with
> default settings with my other ports, I need
> to make sure the 2 port trees are in sync.
> Sorry if I don't do poudeire justice, it's been a while...
> Anton
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I really suggest that you look at synth. It also builds in a clean
environment and provides all of the advantages of poudeire for use in a
single-system (or multiple identical systems) case. No jails to set up. It
builds a local pkg repository and you then use pkg on everything. I don't
consider it a replacement for portmaster, but in most environments it does
the same job and, since it builds in a clean environment, it avoids many of
the issues with other tools. It is also very well documented, so it is not
too hard to understand setup and use.
Kevin Oberman, Part time kid herder and retired Network Engineer
E-mail: rkoberman at
PGP Fingerprint: D03FB98AFA78E3B78C1694B318AB39EF1B055683

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