Are system updates without reboots possible?

Brandon J. Wandersee brandon.wandersee at
Thu Mar 10 18:08:39 UTC 2016

Arthur Chance writes:

> I'd missed the -R option for service(8). Thanks for pointing that out.
> However, that only restarts daemons from /usr/local/etc/rc.d, not 
> built-in system daemons from /etc/rc.d.

Have a look at /etc/defaults/rc.conf. The number of daemons enabled by
default is tiny, and updates that affect them are (as far as I can tell)
particular to them---i.e. you need to restart syslogd if and only if
syslogd gets updated.

The long and short of it is that services that are both enabled and
depend on third-party libraries are almost certainly such because you
enabled and configured them to be such yourself. Either you set up your
own SMTP server that you configured to send SSL-signed mail over the
Internet with your own custom Sendmail configuration, or you did not. Or
your system is running a Poudriere package build service that signs all
built packages with an OpenSSL certificate that you created yourself and
serves them up with an HTTP server that you installed and configured to
use that certificate, or it is not. So there should not be a case in which
you are completely in the dark about whether a running service is
directly affected by a base system update and needs to be restarted.

> Neither does it let me identify non-daemon running programs that are
> affected by a library update.

Did you have something in particular in mind? I can't think of anything
that would fall into that category.


:: Brandon J. Wandersee
:: brandon.wandersee at
:: 'The best design is the least design possible.'
:: --- Dieter Rams

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