Bastille vs. iocage vs.CBSD opinions?

Ihor Antonov ihor at
Fri Apr 3 21:38:23 UTC 2020

On 2020-04-03 16:48, Alejandro Imass wrote:
> I'm having a hard time picking between these three.
> Just want to get a general pulse on the long-time experts here.
> No intention to create any flame wars, just objective comments pls.

Hey Alejandro,

I can't give any advice on CBSD, but here is my 2 cents on iocage vs

 - Written in python, so has bigger dependencies footprint
 - ZFS only (does not work with UFS)
 - Uses its own settings files and format, disconnected from jails.conf
   (this is good and bad, bad if iocage breaks you cant start the jail
 - Supported by IXSystems ( not 100% sure on this one)
 - Has a concept of "plugins". "plugins" is a misnomer, in fact this is
   a way to allow user to provide some input to a deployed image to
   customize it. My experience with plugins was not very successful.
   Plugins are expressed in awkward json format without proper
   documentation (I haven't found any, so if someone knows where to find
   it - please share)
 - Core set of features is mature enough to use it in the wild
 - M.Lucas in his Jails book advocates iocage as one of the recommended
 - supports resouce control with rctl 

- Written in shell, zero dependencies if you have shell interpreter :)
- Works with UFS and ZFS
- AFAIK uses jail.conf to store configuration (not 100% sure)
- Has concept of templates, which I find to be much better than iocage's

- Less mature, I often encounter bugs or unexpected behaviour.
  To it's defence the tools is very young, and is being actively
  developed, new features and fixes are being added every day. It did 
  not exists at the time M.Lucas was writing Jails book.

- The author is very responsive and replies to comments and issues on
  github (same thing can probably be said about iocage, but I personally
  did not test this)

- last time I checked did not support rctl

Both tools support VNET jails.

Overall you should pick a tool for your task. But if both tools fit I'd
recommend trying BastilleBSD as I personally like it's approach better.
It might not be a super smooth ride, but you can help improve the tool
and give the author first hand feedback


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