Modernizing freebsd-update or moving to source upgrades

Matthew Seaman matthew at
Mon Nov 6 07:23:22 UTC 2017

On 06/11/2017 00:19, Baho Utot wrote:
> On 11/05/17 18:26, Polytropon wrote:
>> On Sun, 5 Nov 2017 09:11:48 -0500 (EST), Colin Henein wrote:

>>> With the new EOL policy, people will need to be upgrading a lot more
>>> than before, and I am wondering if there are plans to improve or
>>> replace the freebsd-update utility with something more modern.

>> This will soon be pkg's task. If I understand the ongoing development
>> correctly, pkg will also manage the base (i. e., the OS) components
>> which will then be thought of as packages, too.

> I tried once to use the packaged base and all I could say was OH SHIT!
> amonst other 4 letter words.  No packaged base for me unless I do it my
> self.

pkg base is still under development, and your experience is not
necessarily representative any more -- the current state is, in my
opinion, fairly usable.  Most of the problems are bits of missing
functionality, rather than pkg(8) misbehaving.  One of the principal
missing parts is managing configuration files under /etc -- while pkg(8)
has built-in merging functionality and should be quite capable of doing
the sort of 3-way merge needed, the advice at the moment is to use
mergemaster(8) or etcupate(8).  That implies that you have a checked-out
/usr/src available, but then you'ld need that anyhow in order to build
the base system packages.

The other missing bits are managing having several different kernels
installed: typically you'ld want the latest new kernel to be installed
/without/ removing the previous one, so that there is a safety net if
the latest kernel is somehow defective.

Despite the missing bits, pkg base is otherwise in pretty good shape and
quite workable -- although I wouldn't advise using it for anything that
your livelihood depends on just yet.



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