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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 with ``make world''.  The	release	build process requires
     that /usr/obj be populated	with the output	of ``make buildworld''.	 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 loaded 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 world''.
		The detailed steps that	follow are then	executed to package up
		the different distributions, build the installation floppy
		disks, build release documentation, and	so on.

     rerelease	Assumes	that the output	of a release build has been manually
		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 floppies.  This will	call the
		release.5, release.9, and release.10 targets to	re-generate
		the floppy images of a previous	``make release''.  This	is
		most often used	to build custom	boot floppies.

     Targets called by ``make release'':

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

     release.2	 Installs the system into the distribution directories.

     release.3	 Builds	and installs ``crypto'', ``krb4'' and ``krb5'' distri-

     release.4	 Makes and installs the	GENERIC	kernel.

     release.5	 Uses crunchgen(1) to build ``crunched'' binaries to live on
		 the installation floppies.

     release.6	 Builds	synthetic distributions, and cleans up the previously
		 built distribution trees.

     release.7	 Creates tarballs of the assembled distribution	trees.

     release.8	 Makes source distributions.

     release.9	 Creates the boot and MFS root floppies.

     release.10	 Creates the fixit floppy.

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

     cdrom.1	 Sets up a suitable area to build CD-ROM images	in

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

     doc.1	 Builds	all of the necessary tools to turn the FreeBSD Docu-
		 mentation 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 instructions.

     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
		2.3 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:

     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,

     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 documentation
			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

     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

     KERNELS		Specifies a list of additional kernel configurations
			to compile and install into the	``base'' distribution.
			Each kernel is installed into /boot/_config_ so	that
			it can be booted from the loader via ``boot

     LOCAL_PATCHES	A patch	file against /usr/src that will	be applied in
			the chroot(8) environment before the release build

     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) environment
			immediately after any local patches are	applied.

     MAKE_ISOS		If defined, bootable ISO CD-ROM	images will be created
			from the contents of the CD-ROM	stage directory.

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

     NODOC		If set to ``YES'', the SGML-based documentation	from
			the FreeBSD Documentation Project will not be built.
			However, the ``doc'' distribution will still be	cre-
			ated with the minimal documentation set	provided in

     NO_FLOPPIES	If defined, no floppy disk image files will be cre-

     NOPORTS		If set to ``YES'' then the Ports Collection will be
			omitted	from the release.

     NOPORTREADMES	If defined, readme files will not be created for each
			individual port	in the Ports Collection.  The default
			behavior is for	``make release'' to run	``make
			readmes'' from ${CHROOTDIR}/usr/ports, which can be a
			very time consuming operation.

     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

     PREFETCHDISTFILES	If this	variable is defined, then distfiles needed
			during the release build will be downloaded prior to
			entering the chroot(8) environment.  Note that this 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 snapshot'').

     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 example, cross-
			building for PC98 machines requires TARGET_ARCH=i386
			and TARGET=pc98.

     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


     The following sequence of commands	was used to build the FreeBSD 4.5

	   cd /usr
	   cvs co -rRELENG_4_5_0_RELEASE src
	   cd src
	   make	buildworld
	   cd release
	   make	release	CHROOTDIR=/local3/release BUILDNAME=4.5-RELEASE	\
	     CVSROOT=/host/cvs/usr/home/ncvs RELEASETAG=RELENG_4_5_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=5.0-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), drivers.conf(5), make.conf(5), build(7), ports(7), chroot(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 <>.

FreeBSD	11.1			March 12, 2002			  FreeBSD 11.1


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