Package build out to FTP distribution process

grarpamp grarpamp at
Wed Sep 25 20:15:54 UTC 2013

Can someone please describe the FreeBSD package building and
publishing to FTP process?

Consider the following representative directories...

I'm not really interested in the release hierarchy, since other
than some kind of urgent fix, it has been a onetime build and publish
event and it ages with every future commit. It's process is fairly obvious.

Now for the 'stable' hierarchy, that is updated over time.
But how, under what policy and process, etc?

What determines when an update is pushed out?
Are there some minimum set of pkg that must build for it to be

There must be some interim builds going on, where is the output
from those? Can it be made accessible via web?

Why is the update frequency so low and erratic?

Is there some kind of strategic signoff behind the name 'stable'
or is it just a reasonably named dumping area for a build from
ports HEAD?

Are there groups focused on running builds and squashing dependency

I think of all the users who wish to use packages but perhaps cannot
- months can go by before a popular package reappears from having
gone missing.
- the port itself may be a current version, which means somewhere
there is a good build with it, but the published package is a rather
old version for a long time.
- something in ports may not appear as a package but may
not be pkg banned, perhaps due to the above.

So in general, what is the process behind populating the stable
hierarchies of packages?

And how can and what are the improvements to be made?
Perhaps specifically regarding frequency and completeness.
But also in general.
Is this all wiki'd somewhere?

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