Developing and maintaining a rapidly deployable image of an installed system

Bill Moran wmoran at
Thu May 7 12:02:48 UTC 2009

Warren Guy <warren.guy at> wrote:
> Hi everyone,
> I'm just wondering if there is an established best practice for
> developing and maintaining a rapidly deployable image of an installed
> FreeBSD system?
> If anyone can point me towards documentation or any other resources that
> might be of use I would greatly appreciate it.

One of the tools we've been using extensively is FreeBSD's jail system.
Especially with the ezjail port, it's pretty easy to have a backup tarball
of each "system" that can then be easily deployed to another server if

It also makes it easy to migrate "servers" to other hardware in order to
do upgrades, or re-balance workload if one particular piece of hardware
is getting over or under utilized.

The host system is a very basic install -- mostly just give it an IP and
add users for the administrators.  All the ports and details of their
configs are in the individual jails.  It's much more efficient than using
something like VMware, which has horrific performance penalties.

Bill Moran

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