Latest 9.2-RELEASE-p5 update keeps wanting to install /boot/kernel/linker.hints

andrew clarke mail at
Thu May 1 17:08:50 UTC 2014

On Thu 2014-05-01 11:28:16 UTC-0400, Paul Mather (freebsd-lists at wrote:

> I used freebsd-update to apply the latest security updates to bring 
> several FreeBSD/amd64 systems to 9.2-RELEASE-p5.  Unfortunately, the 
> subsequent "freebsd-update cron" run reported there were still updates 
> available:
> =====
> [[...]]
> The following files will be updated as part of updating to 9.2-RELEASE-p5:
> /boot/kernel/linker.hints
> =====
> However, no matter how many times I run "freebsd-update fetch install" 
> it still says /boot/kernel/linker.hints needs to be updated.
> Is anyone else experiencing this?
> I even replaced my /boot/kernel with a stock 9.2-RELEASE kernel.txz 
> distribution and updated that with freebsd-update but still get the 
> same result.
> I really would rather not have "freebsd-update cron" bug me every day 
> to update a file that it just wants to keep updating again after I've 
> updated it. :-)

A quick googling shows this is quite an old bug!

Short answer: It's annoying but you can safely ignore it.

Long answer: linker.hints is actually generated locally when
freebsd-update runs "kldxref -R /boot/". The problem is then sometimes
the local checksum doesn't match the freebsd-update server's remote
checksum of linker.hints, because kldxref in 9.2-REL does not take
into account that the order of a directory can be different between

A patch was submitted to 9-stable & 10-stable in Dec 2013:

I think the only way to fix this properly is for the FreeBSD team to
backport the kldxref.c patch to 9.2-REL and issue it as 9.2-REL-p6.
The machines generating the freebsd-update files need the kldxref
patch for local and remote checksums of linker.hints to match; it's
not enough to just patch kldxref on your local machine.


More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list