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Testing Guide for 4.9-RELEASE


As part of our on-going effort to improve the release engineering process, we have identified several areas that need significant quality assurance testing during the release candidate phase. Below, we've listed the changes in 4.9-RELEASE that we feel merit the most attention due to their involving substantial changes to the system, or having arrived late in the development cycle leading up to the release. In general, our goal in the QA process is to attempt to check a number of things:

  • The system has not regressed with respects to stability, correctness, interoperability, or performance of features present in prior releases.

  • New features result in the desired improvement in stability, correctness, interoperability, or performance.

To effectively determine this, it's desirable to test the system in a diverse set of environments, applying a wide set of workloads, forcing the system to operate both within and outside its normal specification. Particular focus should often be placed on the continuing (or new) capability of the system to perform correctly when used in concert with systems from other vendors.

Features to explore carefully:

  • A bug affecting IPFW2 "limit" rules was fixed very late in the release cycle; other ipfw2 features should not be affected. We are interested in hearing any feedback about IFPW2 in 4.9-RC3.

  • The sysinstall(8) utility was updated to support multiple mail transfer agents (MTAs). As such, the familiar Network Services menu was modified to expose a new option entitled Mail.

  • The xl driver has recently been updated with full busdma support among other improvements. This driver will now work with large memory systems with PAE enabled.

  • Users with large memory configurations (>4G) should explore the recently added PAE support in 4.9-RELEASE.

The release notes will always be a good place to look for things to test.

Known Issues

  • The kernel hangs solidly during device configuration when certain SATA controllers are installed on the system. (patch)
  • 4.9-PRE panics reproducibly on a heavily loaded ata(4)-system. PR