Mininal skills

Polytropon freebsd at
Thu Jun 4 00:00:56 UTC 2020

On Wed, 03 Jun 2020 17:26:08 -0600, Brandon Helsley wrote:
> By "without any skills" I mean that I'm new to computers and
> am not even familiar with the terminology thrown around in
> the FreeBSD community.

That's absolutely no problem. The more you use FreeBSD, the
better you will know the terminology, which is mostly out of
three classes: general computer terminology, UNIX terminology,
FreeBSD-specific terminology. It is important to understand
the meaning of termini technici originating in those classes,
and _what_ exactly to be "eloquent" at depends on the area
of documentation you want to deal with.

> I've never heard of this documentation updating, I'd love to
> learn more. Who should I be talking to or where should I be
> referring to so I can learn... 

The FreeBSD Documentation Project has its own sub-page:

Which can be reached from the central documentation site:

There is even a dedicated mailing list - freebsd-doc at
which is used to discuss documentation-specific issues. For use
with this mailing lists, as well as all other mailing lists, I
recommend this summary:

Note that "documentation" doesn't just refer to manual pages;
it also includes project web pages, books and FAQ, publications,
maybe even the Wiki and other material.

Note that the handbook you can access with your web browser
is, technically, nothing else than the same handbook you can
patch and rebuild on your local machine, be it HTML or PDF as
the target: Those results are generated from the same source.

So for example, if you wanted to contribute to the handbook,
you'd obtain the latest version of it, and the required tools,
make your changes, test them locally, then create patches and
commit them (or send them in to be commited by someone else).

Instead, if you wanted to update OS manual pages, you'd obtain
the system's sources, modify and test the man page source file,
create a patch, and send it in.

Your primary tool here is a text editor. Depending on your
individual preference, that could be vi, vim, emacs, mcedit,
joe, something X-based, whatever fits your needs. It does not
even matter. Reading "man diff" and "man patch" is probably
also a significant advantage. There are other tools that might
get involved.

Allow me to drop a few relevant articles:

  1.	FreeBSD Documentation Project: Submitting documentation
	I have written some documentation. How do I submit it?

  2.	FreeBSD Documentation Project Primer for New Contributors

  3.	Committer's Guide

A bit more general:

	Contributing to FreeBSD

As I mentioned, there is also a mailing list where you can
ask questions specifically related to documentation (and
this list, freebsd-questions@, is absolutely appropritate
for general questions such as this one).

> I sent a PR from some account I created about a bug in the
> loading of the kernel modules for bhyve. I'm starting to think
> I didn't quite format it correctly or rather communicate the
> issue correctly. I heard that filing PR's is also a good
> starting point to get involved. Could someone help me find
> the documentation that explains how to file a PR or update
> documentation.

The most convenient way to send a bug report is to use the
following page:

You can even find a good outline of _how_ to file a bug report:

Older FreeBSD versions included a "send-pr" program. :-)

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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