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FreeBSD GNOME Project: GNOME 2.32 Upgrading FAQ


  1. What is new in GNOME 2.32?
  2. How do I upgrade to GNOME 2.32?
  3. Oops! I ran portupgrade(1)! What do I do?
  4. The upgrade failed; what do I do?
  5. List of known GNOME 2.32 problems and their solutions
  6. I have found a bug; whom should I alert?
  7. I want the fame and glory of the FreeBSD GNOME team! What can I do to participate?

Full Text

  1. What is new in GNOME 2.32?

    Although the canonical summary of new features can be found at, some of the most exciting new features of GNOME 2.32 are:

    • FreeBSD support for CPU frequency monitoring, ACPI power management, wireless signal strength monitoring for all supported drivers, and disk read/write utilization
    • Better keyboard layout and feature control
    • Sleek selection of desktop backgrounds
    • Many new applications, applets, and UI enhancements
    • Extensive list of stability and speed increases
  2. How do I upgrade to GNOME 2.32?

    NOTE: Do not run portupgrade(1) to upgrade to GNOME 2.32!

    The simple answer is this:

    1. CVSup your ports tree.
    2. Download the FreeBSD GNOME Project's upgrade script.
    3. Run the script as root. Read a good-sized book.

    More detailed instructions are as follows:

    1. CVSup your ports tree.

      To build GNOME 2.32, you need to obtain the 2.32 ports tree skeleton. This is most easily accomplished with CVSup. Simply obtain the latest ports tree, and you are ready to go. After you have obtained the latest ports tree, do not run a typical portupgrade(1).

    2. Obtain the upgrade script.

      It is not possible to upgrade from GNOME 2.30 to GNOME 2.32 by simply running portupgrade(1). There are new dependencies, and ports will build out-of-order, eventually causing the build to fail.

      To work around these problems, and to provide an update mechanism as simple as portupgrade(1), the FreeBSD GNOME team has produced a comprehensive upgrade script. The script can be downloaded from:

      Simply download that script, and save it to disk.

    3. Run the script.

      Once you have the script downloaded, run, as root:

      # sh ./

      Hit ENTER to begin, answer any questions that pop up, and go watch an entire Monty Python anthology. Right after hitting ENTER at the beginning, you will be given the path to a logfile. By running:

      $ tail -f /path/to/logfile

      you can watch the entire upgrade process as it unfolds. It is hypnotic!

  3. Oops! I ran portupgrade(1)! What do I do?

    Do not worry; hope is not lost. Running portupgrade(1) will cause the build to fail, but it will not cause any lasting damage to your ports tree, unless you have done something exceptionally creative. Simply download the script and run it, and pretend that you ran it in the first place. Nobody needs to know that you did not read the directions first!

  4. The upgrade failed; what do I do?

    Unfortunately, this is not only possible, it is highly probable. There are many possible valid GNOME configurations, and even more invalid starting points. If the script fails, follow the instructions in the error message to let the FreeBSD GNOME team know about the failure.

    The majority of build failures will be dependency-related issues. One simple way to resolve the problem is to remove the offending port, re-run, and then reinstall the port when the upgrade process is complete. In order to avoid having to build everything again, you can pass the -restart flag to to resume a failed build.

  5. List of GNOME 2.32 problems and their solutions

    Although GNOME 2.32 is certainly the best release to date (of course), there are a couple regressions that slipped in, both in the GNOME code and in its implementation within FreeBSD. Some of the more visible issues are:

    • Changing the GTK theme can cause a few apps to crash. This issue is known to the GNOME/Linux world, so it is not a FreeBSD-specific issue. You can ignore the error message, and click the "Restart" button to restart the crashed application when the dialog pops up. You should be fine after that.
    • The KDE menu is missing some icons. KDE failed to follow the published standards, and places its icons in a non-standard location. GNOME 2.10 introduced a mass move towards complete compliance with standards, so there's not much that can be done until KDE moves its default icons into a location that GNOME recognizes.
    • #167934: [gnome-menus] Any .desktop file in share/gnome/apps without a Categories entry will not work. This is due to a LegacyDir bug that is supposed to be fixed in next release (2.10.1). The workaround is to add a Categories entry in the .desktop file in question.
    • [gnome-session]: Options for shutting down or rebooting will not appear on logout unless GDM is running on the same machine.
    • [multiload-applet]: The disk reads/writes monitor does not work on -CURRENT. A solution is currently being sought.
    • #137388: [gnome-terminal] gnome-terminal has a problem with dynamic titles and vim (UPDATE: See this email for a workaround to this problem)
    • #73375: [evolution] Evolution will crash when selecting a new Server Type for an account with malloc debugging enabled. This only affects -CURRENT users by default. To disable malloc debugging, run the command ln -sf aj /etc/malloc.conf as root.
    • GnomeVFS-2 now has native support for sftp methods. Fully non-interactive publickey authentication works on all versions of FreeBSD, but FreeBSD 5.X is required for password or passphrase authentication.
  6. I have found a bug; whom should I alert?

    Please read the FreeBSD GNOME Project's documentation on reporting bugs.

  7. I want the fame and glory of being part of the FreeBSD GNOME team! What can I do to participate?

    Please read our list of ways to get involved!