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When the release has been thoroughly tested and packaged for distribution, the master FTP site must be updated. The official FreeBSD public FTP sites are all mirrors of a master server that is open only to other FTP sites. This site is known as <systemitem>ftp-master</systemitem>. When the release is ready, the following files must be modified on <systemitem>ftp-master</systemitem>:
<filename>/pub/FreeBSD/releases/<replaceable>arch</replaceable>/<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>-RELEASE/</filename>
The installable FTP directory as output from <command>make release</command>.
<filename>/pub/FreeBSD/ports/<replaceable>arch</replaceable>/packages-<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>-release/</filename>
The complete package build for this release.
<filename>/pub/FreeBSD/releases/<replaceable>arch</replaceable>/<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>-RELEASE/tools</filename>
A symlink to <filename>../../../tools</filename>.
<filename>/pub/FreeBSD/releases/<replaceable>arch</replaceable>/<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>-RELEASE/packages</filename>
A symlink to <filename>../../../ports/<replaceable>arch</replaceable>/packages-<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>-release</filename>.
<filename>/pub/FreeBSD/releases/<replaceable>arch</replaceable>/ISO-IMAGES/<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>/<replaceable>X.Y</replaceable>-RELEASE-<replaceable>arch</replaceable>-*.iso</filename>
The ISO images. The <quote>*</quote> is <filename>disc1</filename>, <filename>disc2</filename>, etc. Only if there is a <filename>disc1</filename> and there is an alternative first installation CD (for example a stripped-down install with no windowing system) there may be a <filename>mini</filename> as well.
For more information about the distribution mirror architecture of the FreeBSD FTP sites, please see the <link xlink:href="@@URL_RELPREFIX@@/doc/en_US.ISO8859-1/articles/hubs/">Mirroring FreeBSD</link> article.
It may take many hours to two days after updating <systemitem>ftp-master</systemitem> before a majority of the Tier-1 FTP sites have the new software depending on whether or not a package set got loaded at the same time. It is imperative that the release engineers coordinate with the <link xlink:href="http://lists.FreeBSD.org/mailman/listinfo/mirror-announce">FreeBSD mirror site administrators</link> before announcing the general availability of new software on the FTP sites. Ideally the release package set should be loaded at least four days prior to release day. The release bits should be loaded between 24 and 48 hours before the planned release time with <quote>other</quote> file permissions turned off. This will allow the mirror sites to download it but the general public will not be able to download it from the mirror sites. Mail should be sent to <link xlink:href="http://lists.FreeBSD.org/mailman/listinfo/mirror-announce">FreeBSD mirror site administrators</link> at the time the release bits get posted saying the release has been staged and giving the time that the mirror sites should begin allowing access. Be sure to include a time zone with the time, for example make it relative to GMT.
CD-ROM Replication
Coming soon: Tips for sending FreeBSD ISOs to a replicator and quality assurance measures to be taken.
Extensibility
Although FreeBSD forms a complete operating system, there is nothing that forces you to use the system exactly as we have packaged it up for distribution. We have tried to design the system to be as extensible as possible so that it can serve as a platform that other commercial products can be built on top of. The only <quote>rule</quote> we have about this is that if you are going to distribute FreeBSD with non-trivial changes, we encourage you to document your enhancements! The FreeBSD community can only help support users of the software we provide. We certainly encourage innovation in the form of advanced installation and administration tools, for example, but we cannot be expected to answer questions about it.
Scripting <command>bsdinstall</command>
<uri xlink:href="@@URL_RELPREFIX@@/doc/en_US.ISO8859-1/books/handbook/network-pxe-nfs.html">@@URL_RELPREFIX@@/doc/en_US.ISO8859-1/books/handbook/network-pxe-nfs.html</uri>
The FreeBSD system installation and configuration tool, <citerefentry><refentrytitle>bsdinstall</refentrytitle><manvolnum>8</manvolnum></citerefentry>, can be scripted to provide automated installs for large sites. This functionality can be used in conjunction with <trademark class="registered">Intel</trademark> PXE <_:footnote-1/> to bootstrap systems from the network.
Lessons Learned from FreeBSD 4.4
The release engineering process for 4.4 formally began on August 1st, 2001. After that date all commits to the <literal>RELENG_4</literal> branch of FreeBSD had to be explicitly approved by the Release Engineering Team <email>re@FreeBSD.org</email>. The first release candidate for the x86 architecture was released on August 16, followed by 4 more release candidates leading up to the final release on September 18th. The security officer was very involved in the last week of the process as several security issues were found in the earlier release candidates. A total of over <emphasis>500</emphasis> emails were sent to the Release Engineering Team <email>re@FreeBSD.org</email> in little over a month.
Our user community has made it very clear that the security and stability of a FreeBSD release should not be sacrificed for any self-imposed deadlines or target release dates. The FreeBSD Project has grown tremendously over its lifetime and the need for standardized release engineering procedures has never been more apparent. This will become even more important as FreeBSD is ported to new platforms.
Future Directions
It is imperative for our release engineering activities to scale with our growing userbase. Along these lines we are working very hard to document the procedures involved in producing FreeBSD releases.
<emphasis>Parallelism</emphasis> - Certain portions of the release build are actually <quote>embarrassingly parallel</quote>. Most of the tasks are very I/O intensive, so having multiple high-speed disk drives is actually more important than using multiple processors in speeding up the <command>make release</command> process. If multiple disks are used for different hierarchies in the <citerefentry><refentrytitle>chroot</refentrytitle><manvolnum>2</manvolnum></citerefentry> environment, then the CVS checkout of the <filename>ports</filename> and <filename>doc</filename> trees can be happening simultaneously as the <command>make world</command> on another disk. Using a <acronym>RAID</acronym> solution (hardware or software) can significantly decrease the overall build time.
<emphasis>Cross-building releases</emphasis> - Building IA-64 or Alpha release on x86 hardware? <command>make TARGET=ia64 release</command>.
<emphasis>Regression Testing</emphasis> - We need better automated correctness testing for FreeBSD.
<emphasis>Installation Tools</emphasis> - Our installation program has long since outlived its intended life span. Several projects are under development to provide a more advanced installation mechanism. The libh project was one such project that aimed to provide an intelligent new package framework and GUI installation program.
Acknowledgements
Marshall Kirk McKusick, Michael J. Karels, and Keith Bostic: <link xlink:href="http://docs.FreeBSD.org/44doc/papers/releng.html"> <emphasis>The Release Engineering of 4.3BSD</emphasis></link>

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(itstool) path: sect1/title
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read-only
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article.translate.xml:911
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a year ago
Source string age
a year ago
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articles/releng.pot, string 164