Release engineering confusion

Steve Bertrand iaccounts at
Thu Nov 17 00:52:25 GMT 2005


> -----Original Message-----
> From: dpkirchner at [mailto:dpkirchner at] On 
> Behalf Of David Kirchner
> Sent: Wednesday, November 16, 2005 7:45 PM
> To: Steve Bertrand
> Cc: RW; FreeBSD Questions
> Subject: Re: Release engineering confusion
> On 11/16/05, Steve Bertrand <iaccounts at> wrote:
> > Thank you. However, that entire page out of the handbook 
> pretty much 
> > clarifies that a production environment should *not* track either 
> >
> > So I'm assuming I'm best off with RELENG_6_0 etc, etc? Does anyone 
> > here actually run STABLE or CURRENT in a production 
> environment? I've 
> > personally had the most luck with RELENG_4 which is still 
> my main box, 
> > but now my curiosity has got the best of me.
> >
> > Steve
> Ultimately it depends on how much downtime and difficulty 
> you're willing to endure, just in case the -STABLE branch 
> ends up not working for your servers for some particular 
> reason. We use -RELEASE almost exclusively (we have one 
> -STABLE machine, because we needed a newer version of a 
> kernel driver) as we manage hundreds of servers, and there's 
> no one -STABLE release (to properly describe the -STABLE 
> version you're using you have to have the date and time of 
> the cvsup, as opposed to -RELEASE versions being like 
> 5.4-RELEASE-p9). It's easier, and thus more reliable, for us 
> to have stable(heh) version strings.

I can appreciate the fact it's easier to follow one string for so many
> If you're just working with a handful of servers, -STABLE 
> would probably be fine, as long as you have backups and know 
> how to revert to previous versions when it becomes necessary.

I do only have a handful of servers, however thousands of users, and
indeed, I do have backups. The problem arises in a criticality that >20
minutes of downtime would lead to a severe problem....which brings up
another good do YOU revert back to a previous release? If
you manage so many servers, I'd love to know what type of routine you'd
use to revert back (and so would many others I'd think ;)

Usually, as per my last message Re: Chad, the upgrades usually fail
during one or two places: buildworld, or rebooting after installkernel.
Both of those are easy to recover from. *knock on wood*, I've never had
a showstopper after installworld before. I wouldn't know what to do if
that happened.

If installkernel reboots, then I've always been good after that.


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