FreeBSD The Power to Serve

FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE Release Notes

The FreeBSD Project

$FreeBSD: stable/9/release/doc/en_US.ISO8859-1/relnotes/article.sgml 230006 2012-01-12 05:51:11Z hrs $

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The release notes for FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE contain a summary of the changes made to the FreeBSD base system on the 9.0-STABLE development line. This document lists applicable security advisories that were issued since the last release, as well as significant changes to the FreeBSD kernel and userland. Some brief remarks on upgrading are also presented.

1 Introduction

This document contains the release notes for FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE. It describes recently added, changed, or deleted features of FreeBSD. It also provides some notes on upgrading from previous versions of FreeBSD.

This distribution of FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE is a release distribution. It can be found at or any of its mirrors. More information on obtaining this (or other) release distributions of FreeBSD can be found in the “Obtaining FreeBSD” appendix to the FreeBSD Handbook.

All users are encouraged to consult the release errata before installing FreeBSD. The errata document is updated with “late-breaking” information discovered late in the release cycle or after the release. Typically, it contains information on known bugs, security advisories, and corrections to documentation. An up-to-date copy of the errata for FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE can be found on the FreeBSD Web site.

2 What's New

This section describes the most user-visible new or changed features in FreeBSD since 8.2-RELEASE.

Typical release note items document recent security advisories issued after 8.2-RELEASE, new drivers or hardware support, new commands or options, major bug fixes, or contributed software upgrades. They may also list changes to major ports/packages or release engineering practices. Clearly the release notes cannot list every single change made to FreeBSD between releases; this document focuses primarily on security advisories, user-visible changes, and major architectural improvements.

2.1 Security Advisories

Problems described in the following security advisories have been fixed. For more information, consult the individual advisories available from

Advisory Date Topic
SA-11:01.mountd 20 April 2011

Network ACL mishandling in mountd(8)

SA-11:02.bind 28 May 2011

BIND remote DoS with large RRSIG RRsets and negative caching

SA-11:04.compress 28 September 2011

Errors handling corrupt compress file in compress(1) and gzip(1)

SA-11:05.unix 28 September 2011

Buffer overflow in handling of UNIX socket addresses

SA-11:06.bind 23 December 2011

Remote packet Denial of Service against named(8) servers

SA-11:07.chroot 23 December 2011

Code execution via chrooted ftpd

SA-11:08.telnetd 23 December 2011

telnetd code execution vulnerability

SA-11:09.pam_ssh 23 December 2011

pam_ssh improperly grants access when user account has unencrypted SSH private keys

SA-11:10.pam 23 December 2011

pam_start() does not validate service names

2.2 Kernel Changes

The FreeBSD kernel now supports Capsicum Capability Mode. Capsicum is a set of features for sandboxing support, using a capability model in which the capabilities are file descriptors. Two new kernel options CAPABILITIES and CAPABILITY_MODE have been added to the GENERIC kernel. For more information about Capsicum, see[r219129]

[amd64, i386] The FreeBSD dtrace(1) framework now supports systrace for system calls of linux32 and freebsd32 on FreeBSD/amd64. Two new systrace_linux32 and systrace_freebsd32 kernel modules provide support for tracing compat system calls in addition to the native system call tracing provided by the systrace module.[r219559, r219561]

[amd64, i386, powerpc] The FreeBSD ELF image activator now supports the PT_GNU_STACK program header. This is disabled by default. New sysctl(8) variables kern.elf32.nxstack and kern.elf64.nxstack allow enabling PT_GNU_STACK for the specified ABIs (e.g. elf32 for 32-bit ABI).[r217152, r217396]

The hhook(9) (Helper Hook) and khelp(9) (Kernel Helpers) KPIs have been implemented. These are a kind of superset of pfil(9) framework for more general use in the kernel. The hhook(9) KPI provides a way for kernel subsystems to export hook points that khelp(9) modules can hook to provide enhanced or new functionality to the kernel. The khelp(9) KPI provides a framework for managing khelp(9) modules, which indirectly use the hhook(9) KPI to register their hook functions with hook points of interest within the kernel. These allow a structured way to dynamically extend the kernel at runtime in an ABI preserving manner.[r216758, r216615]

[amd64, i386, pc98] A loader(8) tunable hw.memtest.tests has been added. This controls whether to perform memory testing at boot time or not. The default value is 1 (perform a memory test).[r224516]

A new resource accounting API has been implemented. It can keep per-process, per-jail, and per-loginclass resource accounting information. Note that this is not built nor installed by default. To build and install them, specify options RACCT in the kernel configuration file and rebuild the base system as described in the FreeBSD Handbook.[r220137]

A new resource-limiting API has been implemented. It works in conjunction with the RACCT resource accounting implementation and takes user-configurable actions based on the set of rules it maintains and the current resource usage. The rctl(8) utility has been added to manage the rules in userland. Note that this is not built nor installed by default. To build and install them, specify options RCTL in the kernel configuration file and rebuild the base system as described in the FreeBSD Handbook.[r220163]

The sendmsg(2) and recvmsg(2) system calls in the FreeBSD Linux ABI compatibility have been improved.[r220031]

The open(2) and fhopen(2) system calls now support the O_CLOEXEC flag, which allows setting the FD_CLOEXEC flag for the newly created file descriptor. This is standardized in IEEE Std 1003.1-2008 (POSIX, Single UNIX Specification Version 4).[r219999]

The posix_fallocate(2) system call has been implemented. This is a function in POSIX to ensure that a part of the storage for regular file data is allocated on the file system storage media.[r220791]

Two new system calls setloginclass(2) and getloginclass(2) have been added. This makes it possible for the kernel to track the login class a process is assigned to, which is required for the RCTL resource limiting framework.[r219304]

[amd64] FreeBSD now supports executing FreeBSD 1/i386 a.out binaries on FreeBSD/amd64. Note that this is not built nor installed by default. To build and install them, specify options COMPAT_43 in the kernel configuration file and rebuild the base system as described in the FreeBSD Handbook.[r220238]

The following sysctl(8) variables have been added to show the availability of various kernel features:[r218485, r219028, r219029]

sysctl(8) variable name Description
kern.features.ufs_acl ACL (Access Control List) support in UFS
kern.features.ufs_gjournal journaling support through gjournal(8) for UFS
kern.features.ufs_quota UFS disk quotas support
kern.features.ufs_quota64 64-bit UFS disk quotas support
kern.features.softupdates FFS soft-updates support
kern.features.ffs_snapshot FFS snapshot support
kern.features.nfsclient NFS client (old implementation)
kern.features.nfscl NFS client (new implementation)
kern.features.nfsserver NFS server (old implementation)
kern.features.nfsd NFS server (new implementation)
kern.features.kdtrace_hooks Kernel DTrace hooks which are required to load DTrace kernel modules
kern.features.ktr Kernel support for KTR kernel tracing facility
kern.features.ktrace Kernel support for system call tracing
kern.features.hwpmc_hooks Kernel support for HW PMC
kern.features.sysv_msg System V message queues support
kern.features.sysv_sem System V semaphores support
kern.features.p1003_1b_mqueue POSIX P1003.1B message queues support
kern.features.p1003_1b_semaphores POSIX P1003.1B semaphores support
kern.features.kposix_priority_scheduling POSIX P1003.1B real-time extensions
kern.features.stack Support for capturing the kernel stack
kern.features.sysv_shm System V shared memory segments support
kern.features.pps_sync Support usage of external PPS signal by kernel PLL
kern.features.regression Kernel support for interfaces necessary for regression testing
kern.features.invariant_support Support for modules compiled with the INVARIANTS option
kern.features.zero_copy_sockets Zero copy sockets support
kern.features.libmchain mchain library
kern.features.scbus SCSI devices support
kern.features.mac Mandatory Access Control Framework support
kern.features.audit BSM audit support
kern.features.geom_gate GEOM Gate module
kern.features.geom_uzip GEOM uzip read-only compressed disks support
kern.features.geom_cache GEOM cache module
kern.features.geom_mirror GEOM mirroring support
kern.features.geom_stripe GEOM striping support
kern.features.geom_concat GEOM concatenation support
kern.features.geom_raid3 GEOM RAID-3 functionality
kern.features.geom_fox GEOM FOX redundant path mitigation support
kern.features.geom_multipath GEOM multipath support
kern.features.g_virstor GEOM virtual storage support
kern.features.geom_bde GEOM-based Disk Encryption
kern.features.geom_eli GEOM crypto module
kern.features.geom_journal GEOM journaling support
kern.features.geom_shsec GEOM shared secret device support
kern.features.geom_vol GEOM support for volume names from UFS superblocks
kern.features.geom_label GEOM labeling support
kern.features.geom_sunlabel GEOM Sun/Solaris partitioning support
kern.features.geom_bsd GEOM BSD disklabels support
kern.features.geom_pc98 GEOM NEC PC9800 partitioning support
kern.features.geom_linux_lvm GEOM Linux LVM partitioning support
kern.features.geom_part_pc98 GEOM partitioning class for PC-9800 disk partitions
kern.features.geom_part_vtoc8 GEOM partitioning class for SMI VTOC8 disk labels
kern.features.geom_part_bsd GEOM partitioning class for BSD disklabels
kern.features.geom_part_ebr GEOM partitioning class for extended boot records support
kern.features.geom_part_ebr_compat GEOM EBR partitioning class: backward-compatible partition names
kern.features.geom_part_gpt GEOM partitioning class for GPT partitions support
kern.features.geom_part_apm GEOM partitioning class for Apple-style partitions
kern.features.geom_part_mbr GEOM partitioning class for MBR support

2.2.1 Boot Loader Changes

The default boot loader menu has been updated.[r222417]

[ia64] The loader(8) loader now supports PBVM (Pre-Boot Virtual Memory). This allows linking the kernel at a fixed virtual address without having to make any assumptions about the physical memory layout. The PBVM also allows fine control of the address where the kernel and its modules are to be loaded.[r219541]

2.2.2 Hardware Support

[powerpc] FreeBSD/powerpc now supports Sony Playstation 3 using the OtherOS feature available on firmwares 3.15 and earlier.[r217044]

A new loader(8) tunable machdep.disable_tsc has been added. Setting this to a non-zero value disables use of TSC (Time Stamp Counter) by turning off boot-time CPU frequency calibration, DELAY(9) with TSC, and using TSC as a CPU ticker. Another new loader(8) tunable machdep.disable_tsc_calibration allows to skip the TSC frequency calibration only. This is useful when one wants to use the nominal frequency of the chip in Intel processors, for example.[r219473, r220577]

[amd64, i386] The FreeBSD usb(4) subsystem now supports USB 3.0 by default.[r223098]

The FreeBSD usb(4) subsystem now supports USB packet filter. This allows to capture packets which go through each USB host controller. The implementation is almost based on bpf(4) code. The userland program usbdump(8) has been added.[r215649] Network Interface Support

A bug in the alc(4) driver which could make AR8152-based network interfaces stop working has been fixed.[r217649]

A bxe(4) driver for Broadcom NetXtreme II 10GbE controllers (BCM57710, BCM57711, BCM57711E) has been added.[r219647]

The cxgb(4) driver has been updated to version 7.11.0.[r220009]

A cxgbe(4) driver for Chelsio T4 (Terminator 4) based 10Gb/1Gb adapters has been added.[r218794]

[i386] The dc(4) driver now works correctly in kernels with the PAE option.[r218832]

The em(4) driver has been updated to version 7.3.2.[r219753]

The igb(4) driver has been updated to version 2.2.5.[r223350]

The igb(4) driver now supports Intel I350 PCIe Gigabit Ethernet controllers.[r218530]

The ixgbe(4) driver has been updated to version 2.3.8.[r217593]

Firmware images in the iwn(4) driver for 1000, 5000, 6000, and 6500 series cards have been updated.[r220892]

A bug in the msk(4) driver has been fixed. It could prevent RX checksum offloading from working.[r216860]

A bug in the nfe(4) driver which could prevent reinitialization after changing the MTU has been fixed.[r217794]

A bug in the ral(4) and run(4) drivers which could prevent hostap mode from working has been fixed.[r217511]

A rdcphy(4) driver for RDC Semiconductor R6040 10/100 PHY has been added.[r216828]

The re(4) driver now supports RTL8168E/8111E-VL PCIe Gigabit Ethernet controllers and RTL8401E PCIe Fast Ethernet controllers.[r217498, r218760]

The re(4) driver now supports TX interrupt moderation on RTL810xE PCIe Fast Ethernet controllers.[r217766]

The re(4) driver now supports another mechanism for RX interrupt moderation because of performance problems. A sysctl(8) variable has been added to control amount of time to delay RX interrupt processing, in units of microsecond. Setting it to 0 completely disables RX interrupt moderation. A loader(8) tunable controls whether the old mechanism utilizing MSI/MSI-X capability on supported controllers is used or not. When set to a non-zero value, the re(4) driver uses the old mechanism. The default value is 0 and this tunable has no effect on controllers without MSI/MSI-X capability.[r217902]

The re(4) driver now supports TSO (TCP Segmentation Offload) on RealTek RTL8168/8111 C or later controllers. Note that this is disabled by default because broken frames can be sent under certain conditions.[r217246, r217832]

The re(4) driver now supports enabling TX and/or RX checksum offloading independently from each other. Note that TX IP checksum is disabled on some RTL8168C-based network interfaces because it can generate an incorrect IP checksum when the packet contains IP options.[r217381, r218289]

A bug in the re(4) driver has been fixed. It could cause a panic when receiving a jumbo frame on an RTL8169C, 8169D, or 8169E controller-based network interface.[r217296]

The re(4) driver now supports RTL8105E PCIe Fast Ethernet controllers.[r217911]

The rlphy(4) driver now supports the Realtek RTL8201E 10/100 PHY found in RTL8105E controllers.[r217910]

A bug in the sis(4) driver has been fixed. It could prevent a proper reinitialization on DP83815, DP83816, and SiS 900/7016 controllers when the configuration of multicast packet handling and/or promiscuous mode is changed.[r217548]

A bug in the vlan(4) pseudo interface han been fixed. It could have a random interface identifier in an automatically configured IPv6 link-local address, instead of one generated with the parent interface's IEEE 802 48-bit MAC address and an algorithm described in RFC 4291.[r216650]

A vte(4) driver for RDC R6040 Fast Ethernet controllers, which are commonly found on the Vortex86 System On a Chip, has been added.[r216829]

A vxge(4) driver for the Neterion X3100 10GbE Server/Storage adapter has been added.[r221167]

A bug in the wpi(4) driver has been fixed. It could display the following error messages and result in the device being unusable:[r216824]

wpi0: could not map mbuf (error 12)
wpi0: wpi_rx_intr: bus_dmamap_load failed, error 12

2.2.3 Network Protocols

ipfw(8) now supports IPv6 in the fwd action.[r225044]

ipfw(8) now supports the call and return actions. Upon the call number action, the current rule number is saved in the internal stack and ruleset processing continues with the first rule numbered number or higher. The return action takes the rule number saved to internal stack by the latest call action and returns ruleset processing to the first rule with number greater than that saved number.[r223666]

FreeBSD's ipsec(4) support now uses half of the hash size as the authenticator hash size in Hashed Message Authentication Mode (HMAC-SHA-256, HMAC-SHA-384, and HMAC-SHA-512) as described in RFC 4868. This was a fixed 96-bit length in prior releases because the implementation was based on an old Internet draft draft-ietf-ipsec-ciph-sha-256-00. Note that this means 9.0-RELEASE and later are no longer interoperable with the older FreeBSD releases.[r218794]

For Infiniband support, OFED (OpenFabrics Enterprise Distribution) version 1.5.3 has been imported into the base system. Note that this is not built nor installed by default. To build and install them, specify WITH_OFED=yes in /etc/src.conf and rebuild the base system as described in the FreeBSD Handbook.[r219820]

The FreeBSD TCP/IP network stack now supports IPv4 prefixes with /31 as described in RFC 3021, “Using 31-Bit Prefixes on IPv4 Point-to-Point Links”.[r226572]

A bug in the FreeBSD TCP/IP network stack has been fixed. Source address selection could not be performed when multicast options were present but without an interface being specified.[r217169]

A bug in the IPV6_PKTINFO option used in sendmsg(2) has been fixed. The IPV6_USE_MIN_MTU state set by setsockopt(2) was ignored.[r225682]

The FreeBSD TCP/IP network stack now supports the mod_cc(9) pluggable congestion control framework. This allows TCP congestion control algorithms to be implemented as dynamically loadable kernel modules. The following kernel modules are available as of 9.0-RELEASE: cc_chd(4) for the CAIA-Hamilton-Delay algorithm, cc_cubic(4) for the CUBIC algorithm, cc_hd(4) for the Hamilton-Delay algorithm, cc_htcp(4) for the H-TCP algorithm, cc_newreno(4) for the NewReno algorithm, and cc_vegas(4) for the Vegas algorithm. The default algorithm can be set by a new sysctl(8) variable The value must be set to one of the names listed by, and newreno is the default set at boot time. For more detail, see the mod_cc(4) and mod_cc(9) manual pages.[r216109, r216114, r216115, r218152, r218153, r218155]

An h_ertt(4) (Enhanced Round Trip Time) khelp(9) module has been added. This module allows per-connection, low noise estimates of the instantaneous RTT in the TCP/IP network stack with a robust implementation even in the face of delayed acknowledgments and/or TSO (TCP Segmentation Offload) being in use for a connection.[r217806]

A new tcp(4) socket option TCP_CONGESTION has been added. This allows to select or query the congestion control algorithm that the TCP/IP network stack will use for connections on the socket.[r218912]

The ng_ipfw(4) netgraph(4) node now supports IPv6.[r225586]

The ng_one2many(4) netgraph(4) node now supports the XMIT_FAILOVER transmit algorithm. This makes packets deliver out of the first active many hook.[r219127]

The ng_netflow(4) netgraph(4) node now supports NetFlow version 9. A new export9 hook has been added for NetFlow v9 data. Note that data export can be done simultaneously in both version 5 and version 9.[r219183]

2.2.4 Disks and Storage

The ada(4) driver now supports write cache control. A new sysctl(8) variable determines whether the write cache of ada(4) devices is enabled or not. Setting to 1 enables and 0 disables the write cache, and -1 leaves the device default behavior. sysctl(8) variables can override the configuration in a per-device basis (the default value is -1, which means to use the global setting). Note that the value can be changed at runtime, but it takes effect only after a device reset.[r220412]

The arcmsr(4) driver has been updated to version[r224905]

The cam(4) subsystem now supports the descriptor format sense data of the SPC-3 (SCSI Primary Commands 3) specification.[r226067]

The geom_map(4) GEOM class has been added. This allows to generate multiple geom providers based on a hard-coded layout of a device with no explicit partition table such as embedded flash storage. For more information, see the geom_map(4) manual page.[r220559]

The gpart(8) GEOM class now supports the following aliases for the MBR and EBR schemes: fat32, ebr, linux-data, linux-raid, and linux-swap.[r218014]

The gpart(8) GEOM class now supports bios-boot GUID for the GPT scheme which is used in GRUB 2 loader.[r218014]

The graid(8) GEOM class has been added. This is a replacement of the ataraid(4) driver supporting various BIOS-based software RAID.[r219974]

The sysctl(8) variable kern.geom.confxml now contains information about disk identification in an <ident> tag and disk model strings in a <descr> tag.[r219056]

The md(4) memory-backed pseudo disk device driver now supports a sysctl(8) variable vm.md_malloc_wait to specify whether a malloc-backed disk will use M_WAITOK or M_NOWAIT for malloc(9) calls. The M_WAITOK setting can prevent memory allocation failure under high load. If it is set to 0, a malloc-backed disk uses M_NOWAIT for memory allocation. The default value is 0.[r216793]

A bug in the mmc(4) driver that could cause device detection to fail has been fixed.[r216941, r217509]

The mxge(4) driver has been updated.[r223958]

A tws(4) driver for 3ware 9750 SATA+SAS 6Gb/s RAID controllers has been added.[r226115]

2.2.5 File Systems

The FreeBSD Fast File System now supports softupdates journaling. It introduces a intent log into a softupdates-enabled file system which eliminates the need for background fsck(8) even on unclean shutdown. This can be enabled in a per-filesystem basis by using the -j flag of the newfs(8) utility or the -j enable option of the tunefs(8) utility. Note that the 9.0-RELEASE installer automatically enables softupdates journaling for newly-created UFS file systems.[r207141, r218726]

The FreeBSD Fast File System now supports the TRIM command when freeing data blocks. A new flag -t in the newfs(8) and tunefs(8) utilities sets the TRIM-enable flag for a file system. The TRIM-enable flag makes the file system send a delete request to the underlying device for each freed block. The TRIM command is specified as a Data Set Management Command in the ATA8-ACS2 standard to carry the information related to deleted data blocks to a device, especially for a SSD (Solid-State Drive) for optimization.[r216796]

A new flag -E has been added to the newfs(8) and fsck_ffs(8) utilities. This clears unallocated blocks, notifying the underlying device that they are not used and that their contents may be discarded. This is useful in fsck_ffs(8) for file systems which have been mounted on systems without TRIM support, or with TRIM support disabled, as well as filesystems which have been copied from one device to another.[r221233]

The FreeBSD NFS subsystem has been updated. The new implementation supports NFS version 4 in addition to 2 and 3. The kernel options for the NFS server and client are changed from NFSSERVER and NFSCLIENT to NFSD and NFSCL. sysctl(8) variables which start with vfs.nfssrv. have been renamed to vfs.nfsd.. The NFS server now supports vfs.nfsd.server_max_nfsvers and vfs.nfsd.server_min_nfsvers sysctl(8) variables to specify the maximum and the minimum NFS version number which the server accepts. The default value is set to 3 and 2, respectively.[r221124]

To enable NFSv4, the following variables are needed on the server side in rc.conf(5):


and the following line is needed in /etc/exports:

V4: /

For more information about NFSv4 and its configuration, see the nfsv4(4) and exports(5) manual pages.

The FreeBSD NFS subsystem now supports a nocto mount option. This disables the close-to-open cache coherency check at open time. This option may improve performance for read-only mounts, but should only be used only if the data on the server changes rarely. The mount_nfs(8) utility now also supports this flag keyword.[r221436]

A loader(8) tunable vfs.typenumhash has been added and set to 1 by default. This enables to use a hash calculation on the file system identification number internally used in the kernel. This fixes the “Stale NFS file handle” error on NFS clients when upgrading or rebuilding the kernel on the NFS server due to unexpected change of these identification number values.[r225537]

The FreeBSD ZFS subsystem has been updated to the SPA (Storage Pool Allocator, also known as zpool) version 28. It now supports data deduplication, triple parity RAIDZ (raidz3), snapshot holds, log device removal, zfs diff, zpool split, zpool import -F, and read-only zpool import.[r219089]

2.3 Userland Changes

Complex exponential functions cexp(3) and cexpf(3), and cube root function cbrtl(3) have been added to libm.[r219359, r219571]

The bsdtar(1) and cpio(1) utilities are now based on libarchive version 2.8.4.[r224152, r224153, r224154]

The cpuset(1) utility now supports a -C flag to create a new cpuset and assign an existing process into that set, and an all keyword in the -l cpu-list option to specify all CPUs in the system.[r217416]

The dhclient(8) utility now uses resolvconf(8) to manage the resolv.conf(5) file by default. A resolvconf_enable variable in /etc/dhclient-enter-hooks controls the behavior.[r219739]

A bug in the fetch(1) utility which could prevent the STAT FTP command from working properly has been fixed.[r217505]

The gpart(8) utility now supports a -p flag to the show subcommand. This allows showing providers' names of partitions instead of the partitions' indexes.[r219415]

The hastd(8) utility now drops root privileges of the worker processes to the hast user.[r218049]

The hastd(8) utility now supports a checksum keyword to specify the checksum algorithm in a resource section. As of 9.0-RELEASE, none, sha256, and crc32 are supported.[r219351]

The hastd(8) utility now supports a compression keyword to specify the compression algorithm in a resource section. As of 9.0-RELEASE, none, hole and lzf are supported.[r219354]

The hastd(8) utility now supports a source keyword to specify the local address to bind to before connecting the remote hastd(8) daemon.[r219818]

An implementation of iconv() API libraries and utilities which are standardized in Single UNIX Specification has been imported. These are based on NetBSD's Citrus implementation. Note that these are not built nor installed by default. To build and install them, specify WITH_ICONV=yes in /etc/src.conf and rebuild the base system as described in the FreeBSD Handbook.[r219019]

The ifconfig(8) utility now supports fdx, flow, hdx, and loop keywords as aliases of full-duplex, flowcontrol, half-duplex, and loopback, respectively.[r217013]

A readline(3) API set has been imported into libedit. This is based on NetBSD's implementation and BSD licensed utilities now use it instead of GNU libreadline.[r220370]

The makefs(8) utility now supports the ISO 9660 format.[r224762]

libmd and libcrypt now support the SHA-256 and SHA-512 algorithms.[r220496, r220497]

The netstat(1) utility now does not expose the internal scope address representation used in the FreeBSD kernel, which is derived from KAME IPv6 stack, in the results of netstat -ani and netstat -nr.[r217642]

The newsyslog(8) utility now supports xz(1) compression. An X flag in the optional field has been added to specify the compression.[r218127]

The pam_group(8) module now supports ruser and luser options. The ruser make it accept or reject based on the supplicant's group membership and this is the default behavior. The luser checks the target user's group membership instead of the supplicant's one. If neither option was specified, pam_group(8) assumes ruser and issues a warning.[r219563]

A poweroff(8) utility has been added. This is equivalent to:[r216823]

# shutdown -p now

The ppp(8) utility now supports iface name name and iface description description commands. These have the same functionalities as the name and description subcommands of the ifconfig(8) utility.[r218397]

The ps(1) utility now supports an -o class option to display the login class information of each process, and -o usertime and -o systime options for accumulated system and user CPU time, respectively.[r219307, r219713]

The rtadvd(8) daemon now supports a noifprefix keyword to disable gathering on-link prefixes from interfaces when no addr keyword is specified. An entry in /etc/rtadvd.conf with noifprefix and no addr generates an RA message with no prefix information option.[r222732]

The rtsold(8) and rtadvd(8) daemons now support the RDNSS and DNSSL options described in RFC 6106, “IPv6 Router Advertisement Options for DNS Configuration”. A rtadvctl(8) utility to control the rtadvd(8) daemon has been added.[r222732, r224006]

The rtld(1) runtime linker now supports shared objects as filters in ELF shared libraries. Both standard and auxiliary filtering have been supported. The rtld(1) linker's processing of a filter defers loading a filtee until a filter symbol is referenced unless the LD_LOADFLTR environment variable is defined or a -z loadfltr option was specified when the filter was created.[r216695]

A race condition in the sed(1) utility has been fixed. When an -i option is specified, there could be a short time window with no file with the original file name.[r217133]

The sh(1) program now supports kill as a built-in command. This allows specifying %job which is equivalent to the corresponding process group. Note that this built-in command returns the exit status 2 instead of 1 if a fatal error occurs as other built-in commands do.[r216629]

A bug in the sh(1) program has been fixed for POSIX conformance. It could return an incorrect exit status when an exit command with no parameter is specified in the EXIT trap handler, which is triggered when the shell terminates. In trap actions for other signals, an exit command with no parameter returns an exit status corresponding to the received signal.[r217176, r217472]

A bug in the sh(1) program has been fixed. When a foreground job exits on a signal, a message is printed to stdout about this. The buffer was not flushed after printing which could result in the message being written to the wrong file if the next command was a built-in and had stdout redirected.[r217557]

The sh(1) program now supports a -- flag in trap command to stop the option processing.[r217461]

The %builtin keyword support in the $PATH variable has been removed from the sh(1) program. All built-in commands are always found before looking up directories in $PATH.[r217206]

Arithmetic expression handling code in the sh(1) program has been updated by importing code from dash. It now supports the conditional operator (?:) and a bug in evaluation of && and || around an arithmetic expression has been fixed.[r218466]

A bug in the tftpd(8) daemon has been fixed. It had an interoperability issue when transferring a large file.[r224536]

The utmp(5) user accounting database has been replaced by utmpx(3). User accounting utilities will now use utmpx database files exclusively. The wtmpcvt(1) utility can be used to convert wtmp files to the new format, making it possible to read them using the updated utilities.[r202188]

A utxrm(8) utility has been added. This allows one to remove an entry from the utmpx database by hand. This is useful when a login daemon crashes or fails to remove the entry during shutdown.[r218847]

The zpool(8): utility now supports a zpool labelclear command. This allows to wipe the label data from a drive that is not active in a pool.[r224171]

2.4 Contributed Software

ACPI CA has been updated to version 20110527.[r222544]

The awk has been updated to the 7 August 2011 release.[r224731]

ISC BIND has been updated to version 9.8.1-P1.[r228189]

GNU binutils has been updated to 2.17.50 (as of 3 July 2007), which is the last available version under GPLv2.[r218822]

The compiler-rt library, which provides low-level target-specific interfaces such as functions in libgcc, has been imported.[r222656]

dialog has been updated to version 1.1-20110707.[r224014]

The netcat utility has been updated to version 4.9.[r221793]

The tnftp (formerly known as lukemftp) has been updated to tnftp-20100108.[r223328]

GNU GCC and libstdc++ have been updated to rev 127959 of gcc-4_2-branch (the last GPLv2-licensed version).[r220150]

gdtoa, a set of binary from/to decimal number conversion routines used in FreeBSD's libc library has been updated to a snapshot as of 4 March, 2011.[r219557]

The LESS program has been updated to version v444.[r222906]

The LLVM compiler infrastructure and clang, a C language family front-end, version 3.0 have been imported. Note that it is not used for building the FreeBSD base system by default. In the FreeBSD build infrastructure, the clang(1), clang++(1), and clang-cpp(1) utilities can be used in CC, CXX, and CPP make(1) variables, respectively.[r208954]

Openresolv version 3.4.4 has been imported. The resolvconf(8) utility now manages the resolv.conf(5) file.[r219734]

The OpenSSH utility has been updated to 5.8p2, and optimization for large bandwidth-delay product connection and none cipher support have been merged[r221484, r224638]

The pf packet filter has been updated to version 4.5.[r223637]

sendmail has been updated to version 8.14.5.[r223067]

The timezone database has been updated to the tzdata2011m release.[r226750]

The unifdef(1) utility has been updated to version 2.5.6.[r217698]

The xz program has been updated from 5.0.0 to a snapshot as of 11 July, 2011.[r223935]

2.5 Release Engineering and Integration

A new installer bsdinstall(8) has been added and integrated into installation ISO images. The sysinstall(8) utility is also available for configuration after the installation.[r218799]

The supported version of the KDE desktop environment (x11/kde4) has been updated from 4.5.5 to 4.7.3.

3 Upgrading from previous releases of FreeBSD

3.1 Upgrading using freebsd-update(8) or a source-based procedure

[amd64, i386] Beginning with FreeBSD 6.2-RELEASE, binary upgrades between RELEASE versions (and snapshots of the various security branches) are supported using the freebsd-update(8) utility. The binary upgrade procedure will update unmodified userland utilities, as well as a unmodified GENERIC kernel distributed as a part of an official FreeBSD release. The freebsd-update(8) utility requires that the host being upgraded have Internet connectivity.

Source-based upgrades (those based on recompiling the FreeBSD base system from source code) from previous versions are supported, according to the instructions in /usr/src/UPDATING.

For more specific information about upgrading instructions, see

Important: Upgrading FreeBSD should, of course, only be attempted after backing up all data and configuration files.

3.2 User-visible incompatibilities

This section describes notable incompatibilities which you might want to know before upgrading your system. Please read this section and the Errata document carefully before submitting a problem report and/or posting a question to the FreeBSD mailing lists.

3.2.1 Update of dialog

The dialog library is used in FreeBSD's new installer and the FreeBSD Ports Collection to display a dialog window and allow users to select various options. Note that it is updated in 9.0-RELEASE and there are several differences in key operations which might confuse users who are familiar with releases prior to 9.0-RELEASE. For example, pushing the enter key in a checklist window will no longer check an item. The new version consistently uses space bar for selecting an item and the enter key for OK/Cancel selection.

3.2.2 Partition Metadata Integrity Check

FreeBSD now checks the integrity of partition metadata when a partition table is found on a disk though the GEOM PART subsystem. This detection is automatically performed when a disk device is ready. The GEOM PART class in the kernel verifies all generic partition parameters obtained from the disk metadata, and if some inconsistency is detected, the partition table will be rejected with the following diagnostic message:

GEOM_PART: Integrity check failed

This integrity check is enabled by default. On a system prior to 9.0-RELEASE, the inconsistencies were silently ignored. Therefore, there is a possibility that this prevents a system from booting after upgrading it to 9.0-RELEASE. More specifically, the kernel cannot mount the system partition at boot time in some cases.

If this happens, a loader(8) tunable kern.geom.part.check_integrity can be used as a workaround. Enter the following lines in the loader(8) prompt at boot time:

set kern.geom.part.check_integrity="0"

These commands temporarily disable the integrity check. If it was the cause of the boot failure, the FreeBSD kernel should detect the partitions as the prior release did, after entering the commands. This configuration can be added into /boot/loader.conf as follows:


To check inconsistent metadata after booting on the system, use the gpart(8) utility on the system. A corrupted entry will be displayed like the following:

% gpart show
=>        63  1953525104  mirror/gm0  MBR  (931G) [CORRUPT]
          63  1953525105           1  freebsd  [active]  (931G)

For more information, see the gpart(8) manual page.

3.2.3 ATA/SATA subsystem now cam(4)-based

In 9.0-RELEASE, the FreeBSD ATA/SATA disk subsystem has been replaced with a new cam(4)-based implementation. cam(4) stands for Common Access Method, which is an implementation of an API set originally for SCSI-2 and standardized as "SCSI-2 Common Access Method Transport and SCSI Interface Module". FreeBSD has used the cam(4) subsystem to handle SCSI devices since 3.X.

Although the new cam(4)-based ATA/SATA subsystem provides various functionality which the old ata(4) did not have, it also has some incompatibilities:

  • An ATA/SATA disk is now recognized as a device node with a name ada0 instead of ad0. Currently, a symbolic link /dev/ad0 is automatically generated for /dev/ada0 to keep backward compatibility. This symbolic link generation can be controlled by a (enabled by default). You might want to update /etc/fstab and/or consider using volume labels (see glabel(8) for more details) for specifying each file system to be mounted.

  • The atacontrol(8) utility cannot be used for cam(4)-based devices. The camcontrol(8) utility is a replacement.

  • ataraid(4) software RAID is now supported by the graid(8) GEOM class. It generates a device node with a name /dev/raid/r0 if you previously had /dev/ar0. Note that this is not enabled by default. To enable it, enter the following line in the loader(8) prompt:

    set geom_raid_load="YES"

    or add the following line to /boot/loader.conf:


    and reboot the system. A symbolic link like /dev/ar0 will NOT be generated for /dev/raid/r0. Therefore, if your system used /dev/ar0 as the root partition, mounting local file systems will fail because it is renamed to /dev/raid/r0. You need to update /etc/fstab manually in that case.

  • The burncd(8) utility does not work with cam(4)-based devices. Use the cdrecord(1) utility in sysutils/cdrtools instead.

3.2.4 Network Configuration Changes in /etc/rc.conf

Although variables in rc.conf(5) are basically compatible with earlier releases, ones related to network configuration are changed because of reorganization of the rc(8) scripts.

  • An address configuration now always needs an address family keyword. For example, the following line

    ifconfig_em0=" netmask"

    should be

    ifconfig_em0="inet netmask"

    Although the old convention is still supported in the existing variables for backward compatibility, some new variables do not support it.

  • The ifconfig_IF_alias0 variable now requires an address family keyword to support non-IPv4 address families. For instance,

    ifconfig_em0_alias0=" netmask"

    should be

    ifconfig_em0_alias0="inet netmask"

    Different address families can coexist like the following:

    ifconfig_em0_alias0="inet netmask"
    ifconfig_em0_alias1="inet6 2001:db8:1::1 prefixlen 64"

    Note that IPv6 alias configurations in ifconfig_IF_aliasN will be ignored when no ifconfig_IF_ipv6 variable is defined because it determines whether IPv6 functionality is enabled on that interface or not (this variable will be explained later).

  • All alias and static routing configurations through rc.conf(5) variables will be deactivated when invoking rc(8) scripts or the service(8) command with the stop keyword.

    # service netif stop em0

    stops the interface em0.

    # service routing stop

    deactivates all static route configurations.

    Releases prior to FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE did not support this functionality properly for non-IPv4 protocols.

  • IPv6 configuration handling has been changed in the following way. Before in-depth explanations, here is a before-and-after example. What was previously:

    ifconfig_em0=" netmask"
    ifconfig_em0_alias0=" netmask"
    ipv6_ifconfig_em0="2001:db8:1::1 prefixlen 64"
    ipv6_ifconfig_em0_alias0="2001:db8:2::1 prefixlen 64"
    # em1 uses SLAAC for IPv6 address configuration

    should be in 9.0-RELEASE:

    ifconfig_em0="inet netmask"
    ifconfig_em0_ipv6="inet6 2001:db8:1::1 prefixlen 64 accept_rtadv"
    ifconfig_em0_alias0="inet netmask"
    ifconfig_em0_alias1="inet6 2001:db8:2::1 prefixlen 64"
    ifconfig_em1_ipv6="inet6 accept_rtadv"

    More specific explanations of the changes are as follows:

    • The ipv6_enable variable is deprecated. IPv6 functionality on the system is enabled by default. No IPv6 communication will happen if you configure no IPv6 address.

      9.0-RELEASE now supports intermediate configurations between a host and a router IPv6 node. The ipv6_enable variable assumed that the system was a host node when ipv6_gateway_enable was set to NO (default), and a router node if not. A host node always accepted ICMPv6 Router Advertise messages, and a router did not.

      In 9.0-RELEASE, this model is still applied but on a per-interface basis, not a system-wide basis. Specifically, if an interface has an ACCEPT_RTADV flag, RA messages will be accepted on that interface for SLAAC (StateLess Address AutoConfiguration) regardless of whether the packet forwarding is enabled or not.

      In addition to them, a per-interface flag NO_RADR and a sysctl(8) variable net.inet6.ip6.rfc6204w3 have been added. This controls whether default router list information via RA messages on an RA-accepting interface should be ignored or not. In an IPv6 router model, it is not supposed to accept RA messages as an information source for the default router list. Because of that, FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE ignores the default router list part when IPv6 packet forwarding is enabled, even if the interface has an ACCEPT_RTADV flag. However, this can make for a difficult situation when the system has to work as a CPE (Customer Premises Equipment) which needs RA messages from the upstream network for network configuration and acts as a router for the LAN simultaneously. For more information about this kind of configuration, see RFC 6204.

      To support this kind of configuration, the ipv6_cpe_wanif variable in rc.conf(5) can be used.


      means the em0 interface accepts RA messages and the default router information in them, and the other interfaces ignore the default router information part even when the ACCEPT_RTADV flag is set on them.

      ipv6_cpe_wanif handling internally sets the net.inet6.ip6.rfc6204w3 and the net.inet6.ip6.no_radr sysctl(8) variables to 1. Note that both are set to 0 by default. When the former is set to 1, FreeBSD accepts the default router list even when IPv6 packet forwarding is enabled. Note that a system administrator needs to set a NO_RADR flag on the other RA-accepting interfaces, if any, to prevent it from accepting unexpected default router information. The latter variable means the NO_RADR flag is automatically set on them.

      If ipv6_enable="YES" is defined in FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, it sets ipv6_activate_all_interfaces="YES" in /etc/rc.conf and the inet6 accept_rtadv ifconfig(8) option on all network interfaces. Note that this is only for backward compatibility. The ipv6_enable should not be used in FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE.

    • The ipv6_ifconfig_IF variable is renamed to ifconfig_IF_ipv6. This variable controls whether IPv6 functionality should be enabled on that interface or not. If ifconfig_IF_ipv6, is not set, there is no IPv6 functionality on the interface IF.

      Note that the ifconfig_IF_ipv6 variable always needs the address family keyword inet6. If you need an automatic link-local address only, the following line is enough:

      ifconfig_em0_ipv6="inet6 auto_linklocal"

      If you need full-blown IPv6 functionality on all interfaces like prior releases with ipv6_enable="YES", including ones with no ifconfig_IF_ipv6 line, you might want to use the ipv6_activate_all_interfaces variable as explained later.

      If ipv6_ifconfig_IF="..." is defined in FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, it means ifconfig_IF_ipv6="inet6 ...". Note that this is only for backward compatibility. The inet6 address family keyword is required for ifconfig_IF_ipv6, but was NOT required for ipv6_ifconfig_IF. The ipv6_ifconfig_IF variables should not be used in 9.0-RELEASE.

    • An interface with no corresponding ifconfig_IF_ipv6 variable is marked with an IFDISABLED flag by devd(8) daemon. This flag means IPv6 communication is disabled on that interface. This can also be found in output of ifconfig(8):

      % ifconfig em0
      em0: flags=8843<UP,BROADCAST,RUNNING,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST> metric 0 mtu 1500
              ether xx:xx:xx:xx:xx:xx
              inet netmask 0xffffff00 broadcast
              nd6 options=3<PERFORMNUD,IFDISABLED,ACCEPT_RTADV>
              media: Ethernet autoselect (1000baseT <full-duplex>)
              status: active

      To enable IPv6 functionality, this flag should be removed first. There are several ways to do so. Adding an IPv6 address automatically removes this flag. It is possible to remove this flag explicitly by using the following command:

      # ifconfig em0 inet6 -ifdisabled

      Note that defining an ifconfig_IF_ipv6 is the most reasonable way to activate IPv6 functionality on that interface. This IFDISABLED flag is to prevent unintended IPv6 communications in an IPv4-only environment even when the interface has an IPv6 link-local address. If you need full-blown IPv6 functionality on all interfaces, you might want to use the ipv6_activate_all_interfaces variable as explained later.

    • The sysctl(8) variable net.inet6.ip6.accept_rtadv has been changed. It was a system-wide configuration knob which controlled whether the system accepts ICMPv6 Router Advertisement messages or not. In FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, this knob is converted into a per-interface inet6 accept_rtadv ifconfig(8) option. Although the sysctl(8) variable is available still in FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, it now controls whether the per-interface option is set by default or not. The default value is 0 (not accept the RA messages).

    • The sysctl(8) variable net.inet6.ip6.auto_linklocal has been changed. It was a system-wide configuration knob which controlled whether an IPv6 link-local address was generated on a network interface when it became up. In FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, this knob is converted into a per-interface inet6 auto_linklocal ifconfig(8) option. Although the sysctl(8) variable is still available in FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, it now controls whether the per-interface option is set by default or not. The default value is 1 (generate a link-local automatically).

    • The functionality of ipv6_ifconfig_IF_alias0 is integrated into ifconfig_IF_alias0. Note that address family keywords are always required:

      ifconfig_em0_alias0="inet netmask"
      ifconfig_em0_alias1="inet6 2001:db8:1::1 prefixlen 64

      Although ipv6_ifconfig_IF_aliasN is still usable in FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE, it is only for backward compatibility.

    • A new ipv6_activate_all_interfaces variable has been added. If this variable is set to YES, the IFDISABLED option will not be added even if ifconfig_IF_ipv6 variables are not defined. This can prevent IFDISABLED on dynamically-added interfaces such as ppp(4), tap(4), and ng_iface(4) where defining ifconfig_IF_ipv6 in advance is difficult.

3.2.5 Openresolv and /etc/resolv.conf

The resolvconf(8) utility has been added and it now handles updating the resolv.conf(5) file. Direct modifications to /etc/resolv.conf can be overwritten by network configuration utilities such as dhclient(8) and rtsold(8).

3.2.6 Disk Partition Management Utilities

In earlier releases various utilities were available to manage disk partition information. They are deprecated in favor of the gpart(8) utility. Specifically, the fdisk(8), disklabel(8) bsdlabel(8), and sunlabel(8) utilities are no longer supported actively though these are still available for backward compatibility.

This file, and other release-related documents, can be downloaded from

For questions about FreeBSD, read the documentation before contacting <>.

All users of FreeBSD 9.0-STABLE should subscribe to the <> mailing list.

For questions about this documentation, e-mail <>.

Last modified on: May 15, 2021 by Allan Jude