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FreeBSD 5.2.1 Released 110

Kalev writes "The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team has announced FreeBSD 5.2.1-RELEASE. This is intended to address several bugs and vulnerabilities discovered in the FreeBSD 5.2 release. See the Release Notes. The release is now available for downloading. If you are currently running FreeBSD 5.x, you can easily cvsup to it or use binary upgrade feature of sysinstall."
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FreeBSD 5.2.1 Released

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 26, 2004 @11:05AM (#8397220)
    Is it just me or are point point releases of FBSD pretty rare? Almost seems like 5.2 was a bit of a rush job.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 26, 2004 @11:28AM (#8397489)
      No, it wasn't a rush, but people didn't test it enough.
      That is usually the problem, 5.1 ran so well that people didn't want to test the RC's, thus some bugs didn't get ironed out for _their_ hardware.
      The thing is, if these people had downloaded the livecd of RC2 and sendpr'ed this release wouldn't be needed.

      You should blame people for their lack of will to test but strong will to always complain.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        And some of us have crappy hardware, like Toshiba, Packard Bell or Compaq computers that simply have hard-or-impossible-to-work-around bugs.
    • by cperciva ( 102828 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @11:33AM (#8397529) Homepage
      Is it just me or are point point releases of FBSD pretty rare?

      You're right. The only other one was 4.6.2-RELEASE. (I'm not counting the 2.2.x releases -- 2.2 was a major version number :) ).

      Almost seems like 5.2 was a bit of a rush job.

      5.2 was right on the boundary between "experimental" and "stable". As such, lots of people started using it once it was released, but few people actually participated in testing it. I believe that 5.2 had one of the longest ever periods between code freeze and release.
      • by rsidd ( 6328 )
        You're right. The only other one was 4.6.2-RELEASE.

        Can't have been the "only" other one, since it implies a 4.6.1-RELEASE before that :) And there was a 3.5.1-RELEASE too.

        • by cperciva ( 102828 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @12:28PM (#8398060) Homepage
          4.6.1 never existed. It was going to exist, but some security issues appeared, so it was aborted. But you're right, I forgot about 3.5.1-RELEASE, mostly because it was never tagged in the CVS repository.
          • by shlong ( 121504 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @12:41PM (#8398215) Homepage
            4.6.1 never existed. It was going to exist, but some security issues appeared, so it was aborted. But you're right, I forgot about 3.5.1-RELEASE, mostly because it was never tagged in the CVS repository.

            FreeBSD 4.1.1 existed also, and was tagged. However, it was a branch off of RELENG_4 instead of RELENG_4_1 and turned into a disaster. But yes, ever since 3.0, we've had few point releases.
            • FreeBSD 4.1.1 existed also, and was tagged.

              Umm. I knew that. I even used FreeBSD 4.1.1. Sigh...
              • by dohcvtec ( 461026 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @04:59PM (#8401591)
                Funny, 4.1.1 was the first version of FreeBSD I used, and I was hooked right from then. Heh, even a "bad" release of FreeBSD is still pretty good compared, oh, say, a bad RedHat release (anyone remember the whole GCC 2.96 fiasco?)
                • by cant_get_a_good_nick ( 172131 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @11:34PM (#8404849)
                  Remember? I'm still dealing with it... Oi!
                • Heh, even a "bad" release of FreeBSD is still pretty good compared, oh, say, a bad RedHat release

                  A "bad" release of FreeBSD is pretty good even compared to a "good" RedHat release.

                  (In my defense re: forgetting about 4.1.1, I was thinking about point-releases-due-to-problems, not point-releases-due-to-added-features.)
                • or the RH VM fiasco.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 26, 2004 @01:53PM (#8399141)
        actually if you had looked at []

        You would have noticed that 4.1.1 was the first point point release in almost two years after the decision that they were unneccesary extra work.
        For 4.1.1 it was decided it was worth it because of the expiring of the RSA patents, it allowed the security pieces to be more easily merged in for US users.
    • by shlong ( 121504 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @12:24PM (#8398024) Homepage
      Almost seems like 5.2 was a bit of a rush job.

      As Colin pointed out in a peer post here, 5.2 had quite a long release cycle. If you look at the 5.2 release schedule [] you'll note that we spent almost 2 months on it. Add in that 5.1 was released in June of 2003, and you have quite a long dev cycle. We did the best that we could to manage risks in the 5.2 cycle, but shortly afterward it became apparent that there were some significant bugs in certain modules that didn't gain much attention until after the release was made.
    • I've just started downloading FreeBSD 5.2.1 from

      FTP site:
      remote directory:

      Happy Unixin' ;)
  • Cool! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 26, 2004 @11:07AM (#8397240)
    Despite the claim that 5.x isn't yet the
    production branch, we've been running it on
    all our development machines and servers for
    6+ months now. Apparently the FreeBSD
    release engineering team has pretty high
    standards! We're really looking forward to
    FreeBSD 5.3, which has M:N threading and
    the new O(1) scheduler as the default.
    Thread creation in our application is
    blindingly fast *and* runs on many CPUs at
    once. After getting off the poor Linux 2.2
    and 2.4 threading, there was no turning back.
    • Re:Cool! (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 26, 2004 @02:27PM (#8399686)
      For the record, FreeBSD's scheduler was already O(1), it just didn't handle SMP extremely well. The new ULE scheduler handles the SMP case much better, along with other nice improvements. See Jeff's paper at []

      The release engineering team certainly does have high standards. Trying to live up to the stability reputation. But keep in mind that 5.x still is considered in testing and major changes can still be afoot that can cause instabilities. So please still keep in mind what -current means, andbook/current-stable.html [], and read the early adopters guide.

      5.x will get better and better as it approaches 5.3R, so while some of the problems running a -current release are lessened, one should still be aware of all this and the higher standard for fixing one's own problems when running 5.x. RTFM is not an insult when running 5.x, its simply a price of entry to a great OS.
    • Re:Cool! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Warped1 ( 68788 )
      Lucky you.

      I downloaded this yesterday, and for the life of me, I could not get it to install on my laptop. It would either kernel panic while extracting packages - or shortly after, I was multitasking ;) - or it would freeze while extracting packages.

      I believe I had FreeBSD 5.1 on this laptop before so I don't know what's up. I just had OpenBSD 3.3 on that slice earlier, and it looks like I'll give OpenBSD 3.4 a shot now.

      And yes, I'll most likely be a bad person and not spend the time necessary to submit
      • by Anonymous Coward
        I had the same problem with installing 5.2-R on my laptop, however 5.1-R went on smoothly. Right now I got phlak linux on it but will soon return to 5.1 and try to cvsup. ;)
    • Re:Cool! (Score:4, Interesting)

      by HeelToe ( 615905 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @10:36PM (#8404410) Homepage
      Well, I'm using it for a home server. It has been worlds worse than FreeBSD 4.8 ever was for me. I have had numerous hangs that I cannot explain, 3 of which resulted in a corrupted /usr filesystem.

      I just did a buildkernel/buildworld for 5.2.1. Here's hoping it is better, cause if it's not, I will have to roll back to 4.8 or heaven forbid, gentoo.
      • Re:Cool! (Score:3, Informative)

        by Brandybuck ( 704397 )
        I didn't have any problems with 5.0 or 5.1, but 5.2 gives me the occasional kernel panic. Something I have never seen in my life on any OS until the last few months. Like you I'm building 5.2.1 right now, hoping that this will solve the problem.
  • by cperciva ( 102828 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @11:37AM (#8397567) Homepage
    [I posted the message below to -current and -security, providing an easier upgrade path from 5.2-RELEASE to 5.2.1-RELEASE]

    In order to provide an easy update path for i386 systems from
    FreeBSD 5.2 to FreeBSD 5.2.1, FreeBSD Update will now update
    systems running FreeBSD 5.2-RELEASE to 5.2.1-RELEASE. To take
    advantage of these updates, install and run FreeBSD Update, and
    reboot into the new kernel:

    # cd /usr/ports/security/freebsd-update && make install clean
    # cp /usr/local/etc/freebsd-update.conf.sample /usr/local/etc/freebsd-update.conf
    # /usr/local/sbin/freebsd-update fetch
    # /usr/local/sbin/freebsd-update install
    # shutdown -r now

    If you have recompiled any files locally, FreeBSD Update may
    not be able to update them automatically (it will complain).
    With the latest version of FreeBSD Update (version 1.5), you
    can use one of the following commands:
    # /usr/local/sbin/freebsd-update --branch crypto fetch
    # /usr/local/sbin/freebsd-update --branch nocrypto fetch
    depending upon whether you installed the "crypto" distribution,
    to force files to be updated. (If you're not sure if you
    installed the "crypto" distribution, you almost certainly did).

    FreeBSD Update will update a 5.2-RELEASE system to the exact
    binaries distributed with 5.2.1-RELEASE, with the following

    1. Files under the following directories will not be updated:


    The ports and src trees can be updated using cvsup; the files
    in /usr/share/man/cat* are rebuilt from (updated) man pages

    2. FreeBSD binaries include, in their headers, the value of
    __FreeBSD_version on the machine where they were compiled.
    This value was bumped from 502000 to 502010 as part of the
    release engineering process; binaries for which this is the
    ONLY change will not be updated.

    As always, this is something I'm providing personally; it is
    in no way endorsed by the Security Officer, Release Engineering
    team, or the project as a whole.

    Colin Percival
  • How's FBSD on AMD64? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by scrytch ( 9198 ) <> on Thursday February 26, 2004 @02:40PM (#8399850)
    I've been pondering getting an AMD64 box, but I'm wondering how well it supports AMD64, what the performance is like, etc. Anyone running such a setup have any stories? Linux is the alternative here, but I would much prefer FreeBSD if it's feasable.
    • by mi ( 197448 ) <> on Thursday February 26, 2004 @05:04PM (#8401638) Homepage Journal

      It works, except for the kernel modules. Currently, you need to compile everything you need into the kernel. kldload-ing does not work yet.

      The 32-bit emulation is supported and turned on by default, although some 32-bit binaries, may have problems controlling some hardware with ioctl-s, because the sizes of structures are often different.

      I wouldn't recommend it as a workstation, because too much stuff out there (open source and not) is poorly written and thus unportable and will break during compile time (at best) or at run-time (at worst). Think about all the foolish assumptions, that sizeof(int) == sizeof(void *) and shudder.... I don't think NVidia offers their drivers for amd64 either, and so on.

      Makes a (very) nice server, though...

  • What is it about (Score:4, Interesting)

    by coughski ( 639362 ) on Thursday February 26, 2004 @08:41PM (#8403515)
    Operating Systems that invokes such spite between proponets? IMHO FreeBSD works very well I run 4.8 for my server and have never had a problem never crashes and it does what I need it do. For my Desktop I run SuSe 8.1 and it works very well for most everything I need. I suspect I could use both as a server or a desktop with few problems. I am not a developer or sys admin but I do enjoy tinkering with networks and computers and *nix or *bsd based systems. I just wonder why I see posts like "FreeBSD is dead" from a supposed linux user when clearly both operating systems are actively growing. cough
  • Simply question (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 27, 2004 @01:54AM (#8405685)
    If I want production stable as recommended by the FreeBSD team, I should use 4.9-RELEASE because 5.2-RELEASE is still being tested.

    Will there be a point where the FreeBSD team says "go for it" or is it going to be a judgement call as it is with a Linux kernel?
  • IPSEC still broken (Score:4, Informative)

    by dokebi ( 624663 ) on Friday February 27, 2004 @11:41AM (#8408246)
    It looks like the KAME implementation got borked between 5.1 and 5.2. ISAKMP packets get filtered even when they're not supposed to.
    see here [].
  • BSD Starting (Score:2, Interesting)

    I've never been a big BSD fan, as I've only used it a few times. I'm more of a Linux person. I truly respect BSD though, and for that, I'm going to be throwing together a box just to install this new version of FreeBSD on.

    I feel that it will better help my knowledge in UNIX to learn it. I don't want to dualboot.
  • by Anthony Boyd ( 242971 ) on Saturday February 28, 2004 @07:53PM (#8419395) Homepage

    ...was the last release of FreeBSD that I've purchased. I got the 6-disk toolkit to go with it -- tons of apps, it made for a great installation. I have no idea if 4.5 is considered a "good" release relative to the other releases, but it made me (mostly) happy. However, I did have one system -- an old laptop with a panel that needed WD drivers -- that just seemed to miss the FreeBSD sweet spot. It used a PCMCIA card to connect to my LAN, but FreeBSD 4.5 had only "early" PCMCIA tools then (which seemed weird, considering it was only a couple years ago). So I couldn't ever get the network up and running. Later releases had better PCMCIA, but they also used Xfree86 4, which couldn't handle my old LCD with its Western Digital chipset.

    Soooo... now I'm wondering. The new 5.2.1 is surely excellent at PCMCIA. But does it have Xfree86 version 3 as an install option? If not, does Xfree86 4 have support for the WD chipset now? I'd really like to get FreeBSD running on my old laptop(s), but it seems that just as the PCMCIA started getting good, Xfree86 went modern and left a bunch of systems in the dust.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I predict 5.x will become the stable branch of FreeBSD before the 2.6.x kernel gets adopted by any major Linux distro >:)

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