Correct syntax of "supfile" to keep ports upgraded?

Roland Smith rsmith at
Fri Jul 30 18:39:00 UTC 2010

On Fri, Jul 30, 2010 at 11:12:36AM -0700, Ed Flecko wrote:
> Thank you Roland; I didn't know portsnap is part of the base install.
> :-)
> >From a book that I have (Absolute FreeBSD - 2nd Edition), it says"
> Use either portsnap(8) or csup(1) to update the Ports Collection, but
> not both.


> The two tools are incompatible. 

I'd say using both is useless, but OK.

> csup is most useful if you are tracking
> -stable or -current, while portsnap is best for production systems where you
> use binary updates. 

This is misleading, IMHO. Yes, csup is best for tracking the system source, but
that has nothing to do with ports. Portsnap is much faster than csup for ports,
regardless if you are using packages or if you compile everything yourself!

One thing to keep in mind is that "The Ports Collection supports the latest
release on the FreeBSD-CURRENT and FreeBSD-STABLE branches." (quoting from Maybe this is what the author is referring to?
If so I think it poorly worded.

What I would suggest is:

  * portsnap for keeping the ports tree updated
  * csup for updating the FreeBSD sources
  * portmaster for upgrading installed ports (by compiling from source)

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