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RELEASE(7)         FreeBSD Miscellaneous Information Manual         RELEASE(7)

     release -- release building infrastructure

     FreeBSD provides a complete build environment suitable for users to make
     full releases of the FreeBSD operating system.  All of the tools neces-
     sary to build a release are available from the CVS repository in
     src/release.  A complete release can actually be built with only a single
     command, including the creation of ISO images suitable for burning to CD-
     ROM, installation floppies, and an FTP install directory.  This command
     is aptly named ``make release''.

     Before attempting to build a release, the user is expected to be familiar
     with the contents of build(7), and should have experience upgrading sys-
     tems from source.  The release build process requires that /usr/obj be
     populated with the output of a native ``make buildworld'' compiled from
     sources matching the currently running kernel.  This is necessary so that
     the object files for a complete system can be installed into a clean
     chroot(8) environment.  The release procedure also requires that the
     md(4) (memory disk) device driver be present in the kernel (either by
     being compiled in or available as a module).

     This document does not cover source code management, quality assurance,
     or other aspects of the release engineering process.

     The release makefile (src/release/Makefile) is fairly abstruse.  Most
     developers will only be concerned with the release target.

     release        Uses ``make installworld'' to install a clean system into
                    a chroot(8) environment on the file system.  Checks out
                    the specified version of the source code and then rebuilds
                    the entire system in the clean environment with ``make
                    buildworld''.  The detailed steps that follow are then
                    executed to package up the different distributions, build
                    the installation floppy disks, build release documenta-
                    tion, and so on.

                    This target must be built as root with the
                    kern.securelevel sysctl set to -1 (the default).

     rerelease      Assumes that the output of a release build has been manu-
                    ally modified, and performs the minimal number of steps to
                    rebuild the release using the intermediate output of the
                    previous ``make release''.

     floppies       Generate a new set of boot and fixit floppies.  This will
                    call the release.4, release.8, floppies.1, floppies.2, and
                    floppies.3 targets to re-generate the floppy images of a
                    previous ``make release''.  This is most often used to
                    build custom boot floppies.

     package-split  Generates the portions of the disc 1 and disc 2 images
                    related to packages.  It uses the list of desired packages
                    from the src/release/scripts/ script to
                    pull packages out of a package build provided by the ports
                    team and organize them appropriately.  The resulting
                    directory can then be passed to ``make release'' via the
                    CD_PACKAGE_TREE variable to populate the ISO images built
                    by the iso.1 target with the correct package related bits.

     Targets called by ``make release'':

     release.1        Cleans out the ${CHROOTDIR}/R directory and uses
                      mtree(8) to build the directory hierarchy for the sys-

     release.2        Installs the system into the distribution directories.

     release.3        Makes and installs the GENERIC kernel as well as any
                      other kernels listed in KERNELS.

     release.4        Uses crunchgen(1) to build ``crunched'' binaries to live
                      on the installation floppies.

     release.5        Builds synthetic distributions, and cleans up the previ-
                      ously built distribution trees.

     release.6        Creates tarballs of the assembled distribution trees.

     release.7        Makes source distributions.

     release.8        Creates the MFS root file systems.

     floppies.1       Creates the boot and kernel floppies.

     floppies.2       Creates the fixit floppy.

     floppies.3       Finalizes the ${CHROOTDIR}/R/ftp/stage/floppies staging

     ftp.1            Sets up a suitable area for FTP installations in

     cdrom.1          Create the layout for the live file system CD-ROM image
                      in ${CHROOTDIR}/R/cdrom.

     cdrom.2          Create the layout for the first and second CD-ROM

     cdrom.3          Create the layout for the boot-only CD-ROM image and the
                      boot-only UFS miniroot image.

     iso.1            Builds ISO images (installation and ``live'' file sys-
                      tem) from the CD-ROM release area (disabled by default,
                      see MAKE_ISOS below).

     fetch-distfiles  Fetches distfiles needed during the release build that
                      are not already in RELEASEDISTFILES.

     doc.1            Builds all of the necessary tools to turn the FreeBSD
                      Documentation Project source documents (SGML, XML) into
                      HTML and text documents that will accompany the release.
                      Also, builds and installs the actual user documentation.
                      This includes the Handbook, FAQ, articles, and so on.

     doc.2            Builds the release documentation.  This includes the
                      release notes, hardware guide, and installation instruc-

     Variables that must be specified:

     BUILDNAME  The name of the release to be built.  This is used to set the
                RELEASE value in sys/conf/, which affects the output
                of uname(1).

     CHROOTDIR  The directory to be used as the chroot(8) environment for the
                entire release build.  This file system should have at least
                3.2 gigabytes of free space on the i386 architecture.

     CVSROOT    The location of the FreeBSD CVS repository.  This path name is
                in reference to the real system root, not the root of the
                chroot(8) directory tree.

     Optional variables:

     CD_PACKAGE_TREE       A directory containing extra bits for the first and
                           second CD-ROM images.  The extra files for the
                           first disc should be in ${CD_PACKAGE_TREE}/disc1
                           and the extra files for the second disc should be
                           in ${CD_PACKAGE_TREE}/disc2.  Typically, this vari-
                           able will be set to the output directory of an ear-
                           lier invocation of the package-split target.

     CVSARGS               Additional arguments for cvs(1) that come before
                           the subcommands such as ``-qR''.

     CVSCMDARGS            Additional arguments for cvs(1) checkout and update
                           commands.  For example, setting this variable to
                           ``-D '01/01/2002 00:00:00 GMT''' for ``make
                           release'' or ``make rerelease'' will ask cvs(1) to
                           check out or update sources as of 00:00:00 GMT,
                           January 1 2002, respectively.

     DOC_LANG              The list of languages and encodings the SGML-based
                           documentation should be built for.  If not set, the
                           documentation is built for all available languages.

     DOCRELEASETAG         The CVS tag to use when checking out the documenta-
                           tion tree.  Usually, the head of the documentation
                           tree is used by default.  If RELEASETAG specifies a
                           release tag, then the associated release version is
                           used as the default instead.

     EXTLOCALDIR           The directory that will be copied to

     EXTSRCDIR             The directory specified by this variable will be
                           copied into ${CHROOTDIR}/usr/src instead of that
                           directory being populated by a CVS checkout.  For
                           ``rerelease'', this will NOT be copied; cvs update
                           will be used instead.

     EXTDOCDIR             The directory specified by this variable will be
                           copied into ${CHROOTDIR}/usr/doc.  For
                           ``rerelease'', this will NOT be copied; cvs update
                           will be used instead.

     EXTPORTSDIR           The directory specified by this variable will be
                           copied into ${CHROOTDIR}/usr/ports.  For
                           ``rerelease'', this will do NOTHING.

     KERNEL_FLAGS          The contents of this variable are passed to make(1)
                           when building kernels during the release build.
                           For example, setting this variable to ``-j 4'' will
                           instruct make(1) to execute up to four processes at
                           a time.

     KERNELS               Specifies a list of additional kernel configura-
                           tions to compile and install into the ``base'' dis-
                           tribution.  Each kernel is installed into
                           /boot/_config_ so that it can be booted from the
                           loader via ``boot <config>''.

     LOCAL_PATCHES         Patch files against /usr/src that will be applied
                           in the chroot(8) environment before the release
                           build begins.

     PATCH_FLAGS           Arguments for the patch(1) command used to apply
                           LOCAL_PATCHES patch file.

     LOCAL_SCRIPT          A script that will be run in the chroot(8) environ-
                           ment immediately after any local patches are

     MAKE_ISOS             If defined, bootable ISO CD-ROM images will be cre-
                           ated from the contents of the CD-ROM stage direc-

     NOCDROM               If defined, the CD-ROM stage directories will not
                           be created.

     NODOC                 If defined, the SGML-based documentation from the
                           FreeBSD Documentation Project will not be built.
                           However, the ``doc'' distribution will still be
                           created with the minimal documentation set provided
                           in src/share/doc.

     NO_FLOPPIES           If defined, no boot and fixit floppy disk images
                           will be created (for those platforms supporting

     NOPORTS               If defined, the Ports Collection will be omitted
                           from the release.

     PORTSRELEASETAG       The CVS tag to use when checking out the ports
                           tree.  Usually, the head of the ports tree is used
                           by default.  If RELEASETAG specifies a release tag,
                           then the associated release version is used as the
                           default instead.

     NO_PREFETCHDISTFILES  If this variable is defined, then distfiles needed
                           during the release build will not be downloaded
                           prior to entering the chroot(8) environment.  Note
                           that if NO_PREFETCHDISTFILES is not set, the fetch-
                           ing is done after any distfiles are obtained via

     RELEASEDISTFILES      The directory where the distribution files for
                           ports required by the release build can be found.
                           This may save a significant amount of time over
                           downloading the distfiles through a slow link.

     RELEASENOUPDATE       If this variable is defined for ``make rerelease'',
                           the source code will not be updated with ``cvs

     RELEASETAG            The CVS tag corresponding to the release that is to
                           be built.  If undefined, the release will be built
                           from the HEAD of the CVS tree (a ``-CURRENT

     SEPARATE_LIVEFS       Store the live file system on its own CD-ROM image
                           rather than placing it on the first disc.

     TARGET_ARCH           The target machine processor architecture.  This is
                           analogous to the ``uname -p'' output.  Set this to
                           cross-build for a different architecture.

     TARGET                The target hardware platform.  This is analogous to
                           the ``uname -m'' output.  This is necessary to
                           cross-build some target architectures.  For exam-
                           ple, cross-building for PC98 machines requires
                           TARGET_ARCH=i386 and TARGET=pc98.

     WORLDDIR              The directory where ``make buildworld'' was run;
                           defaults to ${.CURDIR}/.. which usually points to

     WORLD_FLAGS           The contents of this variable are passed to make(1)
                           when building world during the release build.  For
                           example, setting this variable to ``-j 4'' will
                           instruct make(1) to execute up to four processes at
                           a time.


     The following sequence of commands was used to build the FreeBSD 4.9

           cd /usr
           cvs co -rRELENG_4_9_0_RELEASE src
           cd src
           make buildworld
           cd release
           make release CHROOTDIR=/local3/release BUILDNAME=4.9-RELEASE \
             CVSROOT=/host/cvs/usr/home/ncvs RELEASETAG=RELENG_4_9_0_RELEASE

     After running these commands, a complete system suitable for FTP or CD-
     ROM distribution is available in the /local3/release/R directory.

     The following sequence of commands can be used to build a ``-CURRENT
     snapshot'' of a locally modified source tree:

           cd /usr/src
           cvs diff -u > /path/to/local.patch
           make buildworld
           cd release
           make release CHROOTDIR=/local3/release BUILDNAME=6.0-CURRENT \
             CVSROOT=/host/cvs/usr/home/ncvs LOCAL_PATCHES=/path/to/local.patch

     cc(1), crunchgen(1), cvs(1), install(1), make(1), patch(1), uname(1),
     md(4), make.conf(5), build(7), ports(7), chroot(8), mtree(8), sysctl(8)

     FreeBSD Release Engineering,

     FreeBSD Release Engineering of Third Party Packages,

     FreeBSD Developers' Handbook,

     FreeBSD 1.x used a manual checklist, compiled by Rod Grimes, to produce a
     release.  Apart from being incomplete, the list put a lot of specific
     demands on available file systems and was quite torturous to execute.

     As part of the FreeBSD 2.0 release engineering effort, significant effort
     was spent getting src/release/Makefile into a shape where it could at
     least automate most of the tediousness of building a release in a sterile

     With its almost 1000 revisions spread over multiple branches, the cvs(1)
     log of src/release/Makefile contains a vivid historical record of some of
     the hardships release engineers go through.

     src/release/Makefile was originally written by Rod Grimes, Jordan
     Hubbard, and Poul-Henning Kamp.  This manual page was written by Murray
     Stokely <>.

     Infrastructure changes are occasionally made to the FreeBSD documentation
     set in such a way that release builds on security branches can fail.  To
     work around this, release builds can be made to checkout the documenta-
     tion from the last fully supported release of FreeBSD.  For example:

           make release RELEASETAG=RELENG_4_9 DOCRELEASETAG=RELEASE_4_9_0 ...

FreeBSD 6.2                      May 17, 2005                      FreeBSD 6.2


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