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Here is the third quarterly status report for 2019.

This quarter the reports team has been more active than usual thanks to a better organization: calls for reports and reminders have been sent regularly, reports have been reviewed and merged quickly (I would like to thank debdrup@ in particular for his reviewing work).

Efficiency could still be improved with the help of our community. In particular, the quarterly team has found that many reports have arrived in the last days before the deadline or even after. I would like to invite the community to follow the guidelines below that can help us sending out the reports sooner.

  • Send a first draft of your report when you receive the first call for reports (1 month before the deadline).
  • Update your report, if needed, when you receive reminders: you will normaly receive two (2 weeks and 1 week before the deadline).
  • If after the deadline you still have some more updates ask the team (either on IRC via #freebsd-wiki or send an email at monthly@) to wait for you if you feel that they are urgent, otherwise start putting them in a draft for the next quarter.

Starting from next quarter, all quarterly status reports will be prepared the last month of the quarter itself, instead of the first month after the quarter's end. This means that deadlines for submitting reports will be the 1st of January, April, July and October.

Next quarter will then be a short one, covering the months of November and December only and the report will probably be out in mid January.

-- Lorenzo Salvadore

FreeBSD Team Reports




Userland Programs


Third-Party Projects

    FreeBSD Team Reports

    Entries from the various official and semi-official teams, as found in the Administration Page.

    Cluster Administration Team

    Contact: Cluster Administration Team <>

    The FreeBSD Cluster Administration Team consists of the people responsible for administering the machines that the Project relies on for its distributed work and communications to be synchronised. In this quarter, the team has worked on the following:

    • Change IPv6 address in TWN site.
    • Solved hardware issues in KWC site (with hrs@).
    • Moved remaining infrastructure from the YSV (Yahoo!) site to NYI (New York Internet) (peter@).
      • YSV hosted most of between 2000 and 2019.
    • Installed new machines for portmgr@ courtesy of the FreeBSD Foundation.
    • Resolved outtages (thanks uqs@) with GitHub exporter, Bugzilla and hg-beta (thanks bapt@).
    • PowerPC64 servers are online (power8) building pkgs and reference hosts.
    • Ongoing systems administration work:
      • Creating accounts for new committers.
      • Backups of critical infrastructure.
      • Keeping up with security updates in 3rd party software.

    Work in progress:

    • Review the service jails and service administrators operation.
    • South Africa Mirror (JINX) in progress.
    • NVME issues on PowerPC64 Power9 blocking dual socket machine from being used as pkg builder.
    • Drive upgrade test for pkg builders (SSDs) courtesy of the FreeBSD Foundation.
    • Boot issues with Aarch64 reference machines.
    • New sponsored colocation space in Chicago-land area.
    • Setup new host for CI staging environment.

    Continuous Integration

    FreeBSD Jenkins Instance URL:
    FreeBSD CI artifact archive URL:
    FreeBSD Jenkins wiki URL:
    freebsd-testing Mailing List URL:
    FreeBSD CI Repository URL:
    Tickets related to freebsd-testing@ URL:
    Hosted CI wiki URL:
    FreeBSD CI weekly report URL:

    Contact: Jenkins Admin <>
    Contact: Li-Wen Hsu <>

    The FreeBSD CI team maintains continuous integration system and related tasks for the FreeBSD project. The CI system regularly checks the committed changes can be successfully built, then performs various tests and analysis of the results. The results from build jobs are archived in an artifact server, for the further testing and debugging needs. The CI team members examine the failing builds and unstable tests, and work with the experts in that area to fix the code or adjust test infrastructure. The details are of these efforts are available in the weekly CI reports.

    We had a testing working group at the 201909 DevSummit lwhsu@ has presented the Testing/CI project status and "how to work with the FreeBSD CI system", slides are available at the DevSummit page. Some contents have been migrated to , extending is welcomed.

    We continue publishing CI Weekly Report and moved the archive to

    Work in progress:

    • Collecting and sorting CI tasks and ideas at
    • Setup the CI stage environment and put the experimental jobs on it
    • Extending and publishing the embedded boards testbed
    • Implementing automatic tests on bare metal hardware
    • Adding drm ports building test against -CURRENT
    • Testing and merging pull requests at
    • Planning for running ztest and network stack tests
    • Help more 3rd software get CI on FreeBSD through a hosted CI solution

    Please see freebsd-testing@ related tickets for more WIP information.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.

    FreeBSD Core Team

    Contact: FreeBSD Core Team <>

    The FreeBSD Core Team is the governing body of FreeBSD.

    • Core has provisionally accepted the BSD+patent license for use in some cases. The Core Team must approve the import of new BSD+Patent licensed components or the change of license of existing components to the BSD+Patent License.
    • Kernel Pseudo Random Number Generator (PRNG) maintainership was updated to reduce the contribution barrier for committers who have demonstrated competence in this part of the tree.
    • Core approved a source commit bit for Paweł Biernacki. Konstantin Belousov <kib@> will mentor Paweł and Mateusz Guzik <mjg@> will be co-mentor.
    • The Core-initiated Git Transition Working Group met over the last quarter, however a report is still forthcoming. Discussions will continue in the fourth quarter of 2019. There are many issues to resolve including how to deal with contrib/, whether to re-generate hashes in the current Git repository, and how to best implement commit testing.

    FreeBSD Foundation

    Contact: Deb Goodkin <>

    The FreeBSD Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and promoting the FreeBSD Project and community worldwide. Funding comes from individual and corporate donations and is used to fund and manage software development projects, conferences and developer summits, and provide travel grants to FreeBSD contributors. The Foundation purchases and supports hardware to improve and maintain FreeBSD infrastructure and provides resources to improve security and quality assurance efforts; publishes marketing material to promote, educate, and advocate for the FreeBSD Project; facilitates collaboration between commercial vendors and FreeBSD developers; and finally, represents the FreeBSD Project in executing contracts, license agreements, and other legal arrangements that require a recognized legal entity.

    Here are some highlights of what we did to help FreeBSD last quarter:

    Partnerships and Commercial User Support We help facilitate collaboration between commercial users and FreeBSD developers. We also meet with companies to discuss their needs and bring that information back to the Project. In Q3, Ed Maste and Deb Goodkin met with a few commercial users in the US. It is not only beneficial for the above, but it also helps us understand some of the applications where FreeBSD is used. We were also able to meet with a good number of commercial users at vBSDCon and EuroBSDCon. These venues provide an excellent opportunity to meet with commercial and individual users and contributors to FreeBSD.

    Fundraising Efforts Our work is 100% funded by your donations. We are continuing to work hard to get more commercial users to give back to help us continue our work supporting FreeBSD. More importantly, we'd like to thank our individual donors for making $10-$1,000 donations last quarter, for more than $16,000!

    Please consider making a donation to help us continue and increase our support for FreeBSD!

    We also have the Partnership Program, to provide more benefits for our larger commercial donors. Find out more information at and share with your companies.

    OS Improvements

    The Foundation supports software development projects to improve the FreeBSD operating system through our full time technical staff, contractors, and project grant recipients. They maintain and improve critical kernel subsystems, add new features and functionality, and fix problems.

    Over the last quarter there were 345 commits to the FreeBSD base system repository sponsored by the FreeBSD Foundation - this represents about one fifth of all commits during this period. Many of these projects have their own entries in this quarterly report (and are not repeated here).

    Foundation staff member Konstantin Belousov committed many improvements to multiple kernel subsystems, as well as low-level 32-bit and 64-bit x86 infrastructure. These included fixes for robust mutexes, unionfs, the out of memory (OOM) handler, and per-cpu allocators.

    Additional work included fixes for security issues and introduction and maintenance of vulnerability mitigations, and improving POSIX conformance.

    Ed Maste committed a number of minor security bug fixes and improvements, as well as the first iteration of a tool for editing the mitigation control ELF note. Additional work included effort on build infrastructure and the tool chain.

    Clang's integrated assembler (IAS) is now used more widely, as part of the path to retiring the assembler from GNU binutils 2.17.50. The readelf tool now decodes some additional ELF note information.

    Ed also enabled the Linuxulator (Linux binary support layer) on arm64, and added a trivial implementation of the renameat2 system call (handling common options).

    Mark Johnston added Capsicum support to a number of ELF Tool Chain utilities, and committed a number of other Capsicum kernel and userland fixes.

    Mark worked on a number of changes related to security improvements, including integration and support of the Syzkaller automated system call fuzzer, and fixing issues identified by Syzkaller. Other changes included addressing failures caused by refcount wraparound, improvements to the prot_max memory protection. Other work included NUMA, locking, kernel debugging, RISC-V and arm64 kernel improvements.

    Edward Napierala continued working on Linuxulator improvements over the quarter. The primary focus continued to be tool improvements - strace is now more usable for diagnosing issues with Linux binaries running under the Linuxulator. That said, as with previous work a number of issues have been fixed along the way. These are generally minor issues with a large impact - for example, every binary linked against up-to-date glibc previously segfaulted on startup. This is now fixed.

    Continuous Integration and Quality Assurance The Foundation provides a full-time staff member who is working on improving our automated testing, continuous integration, and overall quality assurance efforts.

    During the third quarter of 2019, Foundation staff continued to improve the project's CI infrastructure, worked with contributors to fix the failing build and test cases, and worked with other teams in the Project for their testing needs. We added several new CI jobs and worked on getting the hardware regression testing lab ready.

    Li-Wen Hsu gave presentations "Testing/CI status update" and "How to work with the FreeBSD CI system" at the 201909 DevSummit. Slides are available at the DevSummit page.

    We continue publishing the CI weekly report on the freebsd-testing@. mailing list, and an archive is available.

    See the FreeBSD CI section of this report for completed work items and detailed information.

    Supporting FreeBSD Infrastructure The Foundation provides hardware and support to improve the FreeBSD infrastructure. Last quarter, we continued supporting FreeBSD hardware located around the world.

    FreeBSD Advocacy and Education A large part of our efforts are dedicated to advocating for the Project. This includes promoting work being done by others with FreeBSD; producing advocacy literature to teach people about FreeBSD and help make the path to starting using FreeBSD or contributing to the Project easier; and attending and getting other FreeBSD contributors to volunteer to run FreeBSD events, staff FreeBSD tables, and give FreeBSD presentations.

    The FreeBSD Foundation sponsors many conferences, events, and summits around the globe. These events can be BSD-related, open source, or technology events geared towards underrepresented groups. We support the FreeBSD-focused events to help provide a venue for sharing knowledge, to work together on projects, and to facilitate collaboration between developers and commercial users. This all helps provide a healthy ecosystem. We support the non-FreeBSD events to promote and raise awareness of FreeBSD, to increase the use of FreeBSD in different applications, and to recruit more contributors to the Project.

    Check out some of the advocacy and education work we did last quarter:

    • Sponsored USENIX 2019 Annual Technical Conference as an Industry Partner
    • Represented FreeBSD at OSCON 2019 in Portland, OR
    • Represented FreeBSD at COSCUP 2019 in Taiwan
    • Presented at the Open Source Summit, North American in San Diego, CA
    • Executive Director Deb Goodkin was interviewed by TFiR
    • Sponsored FreeBSD Hackathon at vBSDcon 2019 in Reston, VA
    • Sponsored the attendee bags and attended vBSDcon 2019 in Reston VA
    • Represented FreeBSD at APNIC-48 in Chiang Mai, Thailand
    • Represented FreeBSD at MNNOG-1 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
    • Served as an administrator for the Project’s Google Summer of Code Session. See the Google Summer of Code section of this report for more information.
    • Sponsored FreeBSD Developers Summit at EuroBSDCon in Lillehammer, Norway
    • Sponsored and attended EuroBSDcon 2019 in Lillehammer, Norway
    • Applied and was accepted for a FreeBSD Miniconf at, in Gold Coast, Australia, Jan 14, 2020
    • Our FreeBSD talk was accepted at seaGL, Seattle, WA, November 15 and 16.

    We continued producing FreeBSD advocacy material to help people promote FreeBSD. Learn more about our recent efforts to advocate for FreeBSD around the world:

    Our Faces of FreeBSD series is back. Check out the latest post: Roller Angel.

    Read more about our conference adventures in the conference recaps and trip reports in our monthly newsletters:

    We help educate the world about FreeBSD by publishing the professionally produced FreeBSD Journal. As we mentioned previously, the FreeBSD Journal is now a free publication. Find out more and access the latest issues at

    You can find out more about events we attended and upcoming events.

    We opened our official FreeBSD Swag Store. Get stickers, shirts, mugs and more at ShopFreeBSD.

    We have continued our work with a new website developer to help us improve our website. Work has begun to make it easier for community members to find information and to make the site more efficient.

    Legal/FreeBSD IP The Foundation owns the FreeBSD trademarks, and it is our responsibility to protect them. We also provide legal support for the core team to investigate questions that arise.

    Go to to find out how we support FreeBSD and how we can help you!

    FreeBSD Graphics Team status report

    Project GitHub page URL:

    Contact: FreeBSD Graphics Team <>
    Contact: Niclas Zeising <>

    The FreeBSD X11/Graphics team maintains the lower levels of the FreeBSD graphics stack. This includes graphics drivers, graphics libraries such as the MESA OpenGL implementation, the xserver with related libraries and applications, and Wayland with related libraries and applications.

    During the last period, several changes have been made, but most of them has been behind the scene. We have also worked on general clean up of old xorg ports that have been deprecated upstream.

    The ports infrastructure for xorg ports and ports that depend on xorg ports have been updated. We have switched USE_XORG and XORG_CAT to use the USES framework, instead of the old way of including from This infrastructure work has been fairly substantial, and new ports depending on xorg ports should add USES=xorg to their makefiles. As part of this was split up, and the XORG_CAT part was split out to USES=xorg-cat. This is used for the xorg ports themselves, and sets up a common environment for building all xorg ports. In addition, framework for pulling xorg ports directly from gitlab was added, which will make improve development and testing, since it makes it possible to create ports of unreleased versions. Further improvements in this area includes framework for using meson instead of autotools for building xorg ports. This is still a work in progress.

    We have also worked to clean up and deprecate several old xorg ports and libraries. Some of these ports have already been removed, and some are still waiting on removal after a sufficient deprecation period. Most notably amongst the deprecations are x11/libXp, which required to fix several dependencies. Several other old libraries have also been deprecated, such as x11/Xxf86misc, x11-fonts/libXfontcache and graphics/libGLw. Some applications and drivers have also been deprecated during the period. With the remaining removals in this area, we should be up to speed with deprecations upstream. We are currently investigating if there are new software added upstream that we need to port to FreeBSD.

    We have also continued our regularly scheduled bi-weekly meetings.

    People who are interested in helping out can find us on the mailing list, or on our gitter chat: We are also available in #freebsd-xorg on EFNet.

    We also have a team area on GitHub where our work repositories can be found:

    FreeBSD Release Engineering Team

    FreeBSD 11.3-RELEASE announcement URL:
    FreeBSD 12.1-RELEASE schedule URL:
    FreeBSD 12.1-RELEASE BETA/RC builds URL:
    FreeBSD development snapshots URL:

    Contact: FreeBSD Release Engineering Team <>

    The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team is responsible for setting and publishing release schedules for official project releases of FreeBSD, announcing code freezes and maintaining the respective branches, among other things.

    During the third quarter of 2019, the FreeBSD Release Engineering team finished the 11.3-RELEASE cycle, with the final release build started on July 5th and the official announcement sent on July 9th.

    FreeBSD 11.3-RELEASE is the fourth release from the stable/11 branch, building on the stability and reliability of 11.2-RELEASE.

    The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team also started work on the upcoming 12.1-RELEASE, which started September 6th. This release cycle is the first "freeze-less" release from the Subversion repository, and the test bed for eliminating the requirement of a hard code freeze on development branches. Commits to the releng/12.1 branch still require explicit approval from the Release Engineering Team, however.

    At present, there have been three BETA builds, and so far, two RC builds, with the final 12.1-RELEASE build scheduled for November 4th.

    Additionally throughout the quarter, several development snapshots builds were released for the head and stable/11 branches; snapshots for stable/12 were released as well although not during the 12.1-RELEASE cycle.

    Much of this work was sponsored by Rubicon Communications, LLC (Netgate) and the FreeBSD Foundation.

    FreeBSD Security Team

    FreeBSD security information URL:

    Contact: Security Team <>

    Several members of the security team met at the Vendor Summit in October to formalize team structure dedicated for architecture and crypto engineering in addition to the existing product security incident response function.

    Since June we have started having fortnightly conference calls to discuss important issues and to collaborate closely on advisories and errata notices in the pipeline.

    • Security advisories sent out in 2019-Q3: 7
    • Errata Notices sent out in 2019-Q3: 5


    Projects that span multiple categories, from the kernel and userspace to the Ports Collection or external projects.

    FAT / msdosfs support for makefs(8)

    Contact: Ed Maste <>

    In order to streamline the process of creating install or virtual machine system images we needed FAT filesystem support in makefs(8). Makefs was originally developed in NetBSD, and FAT support was added there not much later, but after the tool was ported to FreeBSD.

    Siva Mahadevan, one of the FreeBSD Foundation's interns from the University of Waterloo, worked on porting FAT support from NetBSD. I rebased and updated Siva's work, and committed it during this quarter. After a few follow-up fixes we are able to build FAT filesystem images without using md(4) and without requiring root.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.


    Contact: Alan Somers <>

    FUSE (File system in USErspace) allows a userspace program to implement a file system. It is widely used to support out-of-tree file systems like NTFS, as well as for exotic pseudo file systems like sshfs. FreeBSD's fuse driver was added as a GSoC project in 2012. Since that time, it has been largely neglected. The FUSE software is buggy and out-of-date. Our implementation is about 11 years behind.

    I completed this work during Q3. I fixed a few newly-introduced bugs, fixed a long-standing sendfile bug that affects FUSE ([236466]( and merged everything to head and stable/12. Then I fixed the resulting Coverity CIDs. There have been no new FUSE-related bug reports, so I can only assume that everything is working great. Report any problems to

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.

    Google Summer of Code 2019

    2019 Summer of Code Project Wikis URL:
    2019 Summer of Code Projects URL:

    Contact: Summer of Code Admins <>

    The FreeBSD Project is pleased to have participated in Google Summer of Code 2019 marking our 14th year of participation. This year we had six successful projects:

    • Dual-stack ping command by Ján Sučan
    • Firewall test suite by Ahsan Barkati
    • Kernel sanitizers by Costin Carabaș
    • MAC policy on IP addresses for FreeBSD Jail by Shivank Garg
    • Separation of ports build process from local installation by Theron Tarigo
    • Virtual memory compression by Paavo-Einari Kaipila

    We thank Google for the opportunity to work with these students and hope they continue to work with FreeBSD in the future.

    This project was sponsored by Google Summer of Code.

    GSoC'19 Project - MAC policy on IP addresses in Jail: mac_ipacl

    FreeBSD's Phabricator Differential Link URL:
    Github Diff Link URL:
    Project Wiki Page URL:

    Contact: Shivank Garg <>

    About - With the introduction of VNET(9) in FreeBSD, Jails are free to set their IP addresses. However, this privilege may need to be limited by the host as per its need for multiple security reasons. This project uses mac(9) for an access control framework to impose restrictions on FreeBSD jails according to rules defined by the root of the host using sysctl(8). It involves the development of a dynamically loadable kernel module (mac_ipacl) based on The TrustedBSD MAC Framework to implement a security policy for configuring the network stack. This project allows the root of the host to define the policy rules to limit the root of a jail to a set of IP (v4 or v6) addresses and/or subnets for a set of interfaces.

    Features this new MAC policy module are:

    • The host can define one or more lists of IP addresses/subnets for the jail to choose from.
    • The host can restrict the jail from setting certain IP addresses or prefixes (subnets).
    • The host can restrict this privilege to a few network interfaces.

    Implementation - The mac_ipacl module is a loadable kernel module. It implements mac checks in netinet/in.c and netinet6/in6.c to check the IP addresses requested by jail. The idea to implement these checks at these places comes from the fact that SIOCAIFADDR (for IPv4) and SIOCAIFADDR_IN6 (for IPv6) ioctl handlers are defined for adding the IP addresses to an interface. This is used by ifconfig (in userspace) for setting the IP address. The MAC Framework acts as multiplexer between the netinet and the module. The requested IP and the credentials are checked with the rules in mac_ipacl and output is returned accordingly to netinet. The module can be tuned with various sysctl and similarly, policy rules are also be defined with sysctl.

    TestSuite - Test scripts integrated with kyua and ATF are included with the module.

    Using the module - I have written a man page for the module. Please refer to the mac_ipacl(4) for using the new MAC module and various examples.

    Final Deliverables -

    This is a new project, developed as part of Google Summer of Code'19 under the guidance of Bjoern A. Zeeb <>. The module is reviewed and Revision for this project is accepted and ready to land. It is yet to be merged with FreeBSD HEAD, and waiting to be tested by few more hands in the industry.

    I'll be very thankful if you can give this module a try and share your valuable experience about it. Please be free to share your ideas and feedback on this module and please do not hesitate to send me an email.

    Improving laptop support

    Contact: Ed Maste <>

    The FreeBSD Foundation would like to ensure that running FreeBSD on contemporary hardware, including laptops, remains viable. To that end we plan to purchase the latest generation of one or more of a family of laptops preferred by members of the FreeBSD community, evaluate the existing state of hardware support, and implement missing hardware support where possible.

    As the first laptop for this project we have selected a 7th Generation Lenovo X1 Carbon.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.

    NFS Version 4.2 implementation

    Contact: Rick Macklem <>

    RFC-7862 describes a new minor revision to the NFS Version 4 protocol. This project implements this new minor revision.

    The NFS Version 4 Minor Version 2 protocol adds several optional features to NFS, such as support for SEEK_DATA/SEEK_HOLE, file copying done on the server that avoids data transfer over the wire and support for posix_fallocate(), posix_fadvise(). Hopefully these features can improve performance for certain applications.

    The implementation is now nearing completion and recent work has been mostly testing. A cycle of interoperability testing with Linux has just been completed. The main area that still needs testing is use of the pNFS server with NFSv4.2 and that should start soon. Once testing of pNFS is completed, I believe the code is ready to be incorporated into FreeBSD head/current.

    Testing by others would be appreciated. The modified kernel can be found at and should run with a recent FreeBSD head/current system. Client mounts need the "minorversion=2" mount option to enable this protocol.

    Rockchip RK3399 SoC's eMMC support

    Contact: Ganbold Tsagaankhuu <>

    The followings features have been added to support RK3399 SoC eMMC on FreeBSD:

    • Extended simple_mfd driver to expose a syscon interface if that node is also compatible with syscon. For instance, Rockchip RK3399's GRF (General Register Files) is compatible with simple-mfd as well as syscon and has devices like usb2-phy, emmc-phy and pcie-phy etc. under it.
    • Made Rockchip's General Register Files driver the subclass of Simple MFD driver
    • Added driver for Rockchip RK3399 eMMC PHY.
    • Added eMMC support codes for Rockchip RK3399 SoC.
    • All above was tested on NanoPC-T4 board.

    syzkaller on FreeBSD

    Contact: Andrew Turner <>
    Contact: Mark Johnston <>
    Contact: Michael Tuexen <>
    Contact: Samy Al Bahra <>

    See the syzkaller entry in the 2019q1 quarterly report for an introduction to syzkaller.

    Work has continued on fixing bugs uncovered by syzkaller. Over a dozen kernel bugs fixed in the past three months have been directly attributed to syzkaller, and a number of syzkaller reproducers have been incorporated into our test suite., via Samy, has graciously provided a large server for running a dedicated syzkaller instance to fuzz FreeBSD under bhyve. Though syzbot, the public syzkaller instance run by Google, already fuzzes FreeBSD, it has proven fruitful to run multiple syzkaller instances: different instances find different bugs, and allows us to experiment with FreeBSD-specific extensions. In particular, this instance currently uploads data about each crash to, making it much easier to triage and analyze crashes. We plan to make this service generally available to FreeBSD developers in the near future.

    Going forward we will continue to extend syzkaller coverage and make it simpler for users and developers to run private instances, and optionally collect kernel crash information for debugging or for submission.

    This project was sponsored by, and The FreeBSD Foundation.

    TPM2 Software Stack (TSS2)

    tpm2-tss Documentation URL:
    tpm2 Source Repository URL:
    tpm2 mailing list URL:
    tpm2 irc channel URL: ircs://

    Contact: D Scott Phillips <>

    Intel has contributed ports of the TPM2 Software Stack to the ports tree, with the new ports security/tpm2-tss, security/tpm2-tools, security/tpm2-abrmd. tpm2-tss contains a set of libraries which expose various TPM2 APIs for using a TPM conforming to the TCG TPM 2.0 specification. tpm2-tools provides a set of command line tools which use the tpm2-tss libraries to perform tpm operations. Finally, tpm2-abrmd is a userspace daemon which acts as a TPM Access Broker and Resource Manager, multiplexing many TPM users onto a single TPM device.

    Sponsored by: Intel Corporation


    Updates to kernel subsystems/features, driver support, filesystems, and more.

    Casueword(9) livelock

    Contact: Konstantin Belousov <>

    The Compare-And-Swap (CAS) is one of the fundamental building blocks for hardware-assisted atomic read/modify/write operations. Some architectures support it directly, for instance x86 and sparc. Others provide different building blocks, usually the pair of Load Linked/Store Conditional instructions (ll/sc) which can be used to construct CAS or other atomic operations like Fetch-And-Add or any atomic arithmetic ops using plain arithmetic instructions. An example is the LDXR/STXR pair on AArch64.

    The ll/sc operation is performed by first using the load linked instruction to load a value from memory and simultaneously mark the cache line for exclusive access. The value is then updated by the store conditional instruction, but only if there were not any writes to the marked cache line. Any write by another CPU makes the store instruction fail. So typically atomic primitives on ll/sc architectures retry the whole operation if only store failed, because it just means that this CPU either lost a race, or even the failure was spurious. This is so called strong version of CAS and atomics. If primitive returns failure instead, the CAS variant is called weak by C standard.

    For the FreeBSD threading library lock implementation, when the fast path mode in userspace was not possible, the kernel often needs to do a CAS operation on user memory location. In addition to all guarantees of normal CAS, it also must ensure the safety and tolerance to paging. In FreeBSD, the casueword32(9) primitive provides CAS on usermode 32bit words for kernel. Casueword32(9) was implemented as strong CAS, similarly to the mode of operation of hardware CAS instructions on x86.

    Using the strong implementation for casueword may be dangerous, since the same address is potentially accessible to other, potentially malicious, threads in the same or other processes. If such a thread constantly dirties the cache line used by a ll/sc loop, it could practically force the kernel-mode thread to remain stuck in the loop forever. Since the loop is tight, and it does not check for signals, the thread cannot be stopped or killed.

    The solution is to make the casueword implementation weak, which means that the interface of the primitive must be changed to allow notifying the caller about spurious failures. Also, it is now the caller's responsibility to retry as appropriate.

    The change to casueword was made for all architectures. Even on x86, the PSL.ZF value after the CMPXCHG instruction was returned directly for the new casueword. All two dozens uses of the primitive, all located in kern_umtx.c, were inspected and retry added as needed.

    As a somewhat related note, in-kernel atomic_cmpset(9) operations are strong, while atomic_fcmpset(9) should be weak, unless broken by a specific architecture. The general attitude seems to be that retry is the duty of the primitive's caller.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.

    Kernel Mapping Protections

    Contact: Mark Johnston <>

    Modern CPU architectures have the ability to flag memory mappings as "no-execute" (NX), which prevents that memory from being executed by a processor. NX mappings are an important security mitigation since they help segregate code and data, blocking unintentional execution of memory whose contents is controlled by an attacker. W^X (write XOR execute) is a security policy which disallows the creation of mappings that are simultaneously writeable and executable. Under this policy, memory whose contents can be modified must be mapped with the NX flag. This policy makes it harder to exploit bugs that permit an attacker to arbitrarily overwrite data.

    FreeBSD has long made use of the NX flag for userspace mappings whenever possible, but only in the past several years has it been applied to kernel mappings. A recent project has sought to implement a W^X-by-default policy for the amd64 kernel by completing an audit of the remaining executable mappings in the kernel, and making modifications to either apply the NX bit to those mappings or to make them read-only. This work has landed in HEAD and will be available in FreeBSD 13.0 and 12.2. Similar work for other CPU architectures is also planned.

    To help audit kernel mapping protections, the vm.pmap.kernel_maps sysctl was added; it dumps a snapshot of the kernel's page table entries and their attributes. This way, mappings violating the W^X policy can easily be discovered and investigated, and the sysctl provides information useful to anyone interested in kernel memory layout.

    With a few rare exceptions, the only kernel mappings which require execute permission are those of the kernel executable itself, and loadable kernel modules. A number of other regions of memory were unnecessarily being mapped without NX, and these were identified and corrected first. To address the kernel code mappings, the amd64 kernel linker script was modified to pad the .text segment to a 2MB boundary. To improve performance, the kernel creates superpage mappings of its .text segment, but this means that any data cohabiting the final 2MB .text mapping is mapped with execute permissions. The padding allows executable code to be segregated from data which follows in the kernel image, avoiding this problem and maintaining the superpage optimization at the expense of some wasted RAM.

    Enforcing W^X turned out to be somewhat trickier. Unlike other CPU architectures supported by FreeBSD, amd64 kernel modules are linked as relocatable object files, i.e., .o files. (On other architectures, they are dynamically shared objects (DSOs, or .so files), as one might naively expect.) The use of .o files means that amd64 kernel modules contain more efficient code than they would if linked as DSOs, since DSOs inherently make use of certain types of indirection which allow shared libraries to be loaded at arbitrary addresses, and this indirection is useless in the kernel. As part of this project an attempt was made to switch amd64 to using DSOs as well, since the cost of this indirection can largely be mitigated with modern toolchains, but it was found that the use of DSOs would also force a change to the code model used when compiling amd64 kernel code, resulting in a further performance penalty.

    The main obstacle with the use of .o files is that sections are not page-aligned by default; the segregation of sections with differing mapping protection requirements is done by the static linker when linking a DSO or executable file. Since mapping protections are applied at the granularity of the page size (4KB on amd64), the overlap of sections within a page causes problems since, for example, the end of the read-only .text section may overlap with the beginning of the read-write .data section. One possible solution is to perform any required section reordering and padding at kernel module load time, but this approach breaks debugging tools such as dtrace(1) and kgdb which assume that the kernel linker does not modify the layout of loadable modules. As a result, an amd64 kernel module linker script is now used to insert padding for specific sections. Finally, the kernel linker was modified to restrict mapping protections based on section flags.

    As a result of all of this, amd64 kernels now boot without any writeable, executable mappings. Though some of the work was architecture-specific, much of it can and will be leveraged to provide the same policy for our other supported architectures.

    This project was sponsored by Netflix.

    Kernel ZLIB Update

    Contact: Xin Li <>
    Contact: Yoshihiro Ota <>

    The ZLIB is a compression library is widely used in various software. The FreeBSD system had used an ancient (over 20 year-old) version of zlib (version 1.0.4) and total of 3 versions, one in user-land, one in ZFS, and one in kernel. Xin and Yoshihiro upgraded zlib to the latest and eliminated 2 extra copies. Along the efforts, zlib version was upgraded to 1.2.11, netgraph's ppp is re-implemented to use the standard zlib, and removed unmaintained code. We now only have one and the latest version of zlib in FreeBSD code base, new compress, compress2, and uncompress APIs exposed in the kernel, and importing changes from zlib will be simple.

    Kernel zlib changes

    Kernel zlib user updates

    Legacy code removals

    PROT_MAX mmap/mprotect maximum protections API

    PROT_MAX commit URL:

    Contact: Brooks Davis <>

    Unix-like systems provide the mmap(2) system call to allocate memory or map files or devices into memory with specified access protection, and the mprotect(2) system call to change protections on mapped memory. Protection flags specify whether the memory may be read, written, and/or executed (PROT_READ, PROT_WRITE, PROT_EXEC respectively). Traditionally, mprotect(2) can be used to set any desired protections (except that a shared mapping of a file opened read-only cannot have PROT_WRITE set).

    A new macro PROT_MAX() adds a facility for specifying the maximum possible protection flags for mmap(2) and mprotect(2) calls. The program can then specify whether a mapping may be changed in the future to allow a given access protection. For example, a memory mapping can be set such that it can have read and write protections set, but may never be made executable.

    Maximum protection values are provided to the PROT_MAX() macro, and are OR'd with regular protection values.

    This change allows (e.g.) a region that must be writable during run-time linking or JIT code generation to be made permanently read+execute after writes are complete. This complements Write-XOR-Execute (W^X) protections available on other operating systems, allowing more precise control by the programmer.

    For example, to request memory that cannot be made executable: mmap(NULL, size, PROT_READ | PROT_WRITE | PROT_MAX(PROT_READ | PROT_WRITE), MAP_ANON, -1, 0);

    and to request memory that may have execute permission enabled later on, but is not currently executable:


    This change alters mprotect argument checking and returns an error when unhandled protection flags are set. This differs from POSIX (in that POSIX only specifies an error if a valid permission can not be set), but is the documented behavior on Linux and more closely matches historical mmap behavior.

    In addition to explicit setting of the maximum permissions, an experimental sysctl vm.imply_prot_max causes mmap to assume that the initial permissions requested should be the maximum when the sysctl is set to 1. This behavior is known to break code that uses PROT_NONE reservations before mapping contents into part of the reservation. A later version of this work is expected to provide per-binary and per-process opt-in/out options and this sysctl may be removed in its current form. As such it is undocumented.

    While these flags are non-portable, they can be used in portable code with simple ifdefs to expand PROT_MAX() to 0.

    Sponsors: DARPA, AFRL

    Randomized Top of Stack pointer

    Contact: Konstantin Belousov <>

    After the ASLR so useful addition, next in the series of the buzzword-compliant checkboxes is the stack addresses randomization.

    The main userspace thread stack on FreeBSD is traditionally allocated from the top of the user address space and grows down. Besides the initial pointer for the stack on userspace entry, this area also contains structures for program arguments and environment (so called strings), and aux vector data for ELF images.

    Considering the goal of randomizing the addresses of strings and main thread initial frame, moving the main stack area in the address space is not feasible. It would cause significant ABI breakage, invalidates the knowledge already coded into many introspection tools, and causes unneeded additional fragmentation of the user address space.

    Instead a typical approach of adding a gap of randomized size between top of stack and a place for strings was used. It is done in a way which preserves the stack alignment requirement. Stack gap is only enabled if ASLR is enabled (not default) and stack gap itself is enabled (default if ASLR is enabled). Stack gap is specified in percentage of the total stack size that can be used for maximum gap.

    The main drawback of the gap approach was shortly identified. Since gap is cut from the normal stack area, attempts of the programs to reduce stack size using rlimit(RLIMIT_STACK) could cut the active stack region if new limit happens to be smaller than the gap. E.g. on amd64 with its default 512M main thread stack, even one percent of the max gap gives approximately 5M of unused stack, that can blow up the limit of several KBs.

    Typical reason for using rlimit(2) this way is for programs that wire all of its address space with mlockall(2), trying to reduce potential wired stack size to avoid exceeding RLIMIT_MEMLOCK.

    First victim of that issue was ntpd, which resets the stack limit after start for a really small value. Currently the wiring was removed from ntpd, because apparently it does not make the timekeeping better by any means, contrary to popular belief.

    My opinion is that the problem is more in the user interface area than in the gap approach itself. We should make it easy to specify small gap sizes, which cannot be done with integral percentage interface. So far I did not formulated a way to do this which I would like, and since nobody looked for a good solution because after ntpd was fixed, the severity of the issue seems very low.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.

    Signals delivered on unhandled Page Faults

    Contact: Konstantin Belousov <>

    By necessity, handling of page faults is separated into two pieces. The first is the architecture-dependent low-level machine exception handler, and the second is the architecture-independent vm_fault() function in sys/vm/vm_fault.c.

    Machine-dependent code for page faults typically consists of three components: a trampoline written in assembly which creates the C execution environment and gathers hardware-supplied data about page fault reason, a trap() function which is common C-level entry point to dispatch all exceptions processing, and the trap_pfault() C function to specifically handle page faults. trap_pfault() calls vm_fault() when help from VM is needed to resolve the situation.

    If the fault was handled either by trap()/trap_pfault() or vm_fault(), the faulting instruction is restarted. If fault cannot be handled for any reason, the next action depends on the mode in which the fault occurred. If it was in kernel, and the kernel installed a helper, then the helper is called instead of returning to the faulting instruction. Otherwise, a kernel-mode page fault causes a panic.

    If the unhandled fault occurred in usermode, then all Unixes send a signal to the thread whose execution caused the exception. POSIX (or Single Unix Specification) lists several cases where a signal should be sent, and specifies the signal number and si_code from siginfo that must be supplied with the signal.

    Unfortunately, FreeBSD was rather non-compliant in this regard. A long time ago, to improve compliance, we changed the signal sent on access to a page with permissions incompatible with the access mode. That caused multiple problems with garbage collection (GC)-based runtimes which incorporated knowledge of the FreeBSD quirks, so the machdep.prot_fault_translation sysctl knob was added. More cases of incompatibility were identified recently.

    Part of the problem is that code to calculate the signal and si_code from the Mach error returned by vm_fault() was located in trap_pfault(). In other words, each architecture did that on its own, with a specific set of bugs and non-compliance. Sometimes code even mis-interpreted returned Mach errors as errno.

    A new helper function vm_fault_trap() was added, that does several things for trap handlers: it creates ktrace points for faults, calls vm_fault(), and then interprets the result in terms of the user-visible error condition, returning precalculated signal number and si_code to the caller. Now trap_pfault() only needs to provide signal numbers for truly machine-dependent errors. For amd64, an example of such a case is a protection key violation.

    Besides compliance and bug fixes, we also provided some refinements to userspace about the reason of the delivered signal. For instance, on SIGBUS caused by copy-on-write failure due to exceeding swap reservation limit, we provide specific si_code BUS_OOMERR.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.


    Updating platform-specific features and bringing in support for new hardware platforms.

    Broadcom ARM64 SoC support

    Contact: Michal Stanek <>
    Contact: Kornel Duleba <>
    Contact: Marcin Wojtas <>

    The Semihalf team continued working on FreeBSD support for the Broadcom BCM5871X SoC series

    BCM5871X are quad-core 64-bit ARMv8 Cortex-A57 communication processors targeted for networking applications such as 10G routers, gateways, control plane processing and NAS.

    Completed since the last update:

    • iProc PCIe root complex (internal and external buses): fixes and improvements,
    • Crypto engine acceleration for IPsec offloading.


    • Upstreaming of work. This work is expected to be submitted/merged to HEAD in the Q4 of 2019.

    This project was sponsored by Juniper Networks, Inc.

    FreeBSD support for the forthcoming Arm Morello CPU, SoC, and board

    Contact: Robert Watson <>
    Contact: Andrew Turner <>
    Contact: Brooks Davis <>

    In September 2019, Arm announced Morello, an experimental multicore superscalar ARMv8-A CPU, SoC, and prototype board extended to implement the CHERI protection model. Morello will become available in 2021. More details can be found in Arm's blog, a Light Blue Touchpaper blog, and the main CHERI website.

    We have updated CheriBSD, a CHERI-adapted version of FreeBSD originally targeted at the MIPS-based SRI/Cambridge CHERI processor prototype, to support the current draft architecture. This includes full userspace spatial and referential memory safety CheriABI, as well as backwards compatibility to support running existing ARMv8-A userspace binaries.

    We will continue to update CheriBSD/Morello as the ISA is finalised. Will also closely track the public CheriBSD/MIPS trunk, picking up new software features utilizing CHERI as they mature, as well as to pick up changes from the baseline FreeBSD development trunk.

    We currently anticipate releasing CheriBSD/Morello as open source once the ISA and toolchain are published in 2020.

    Sponsors: DARPA, AFRL

    FreeBSD/powerpc Project

    Status of FreeBSD ports on PowerPC URL:
    Status of FreeBSD ports on PowerPC built using gcc URL:
    Status of FreeBSD ports on PowerPC built using clang URL:
    Bringing LLVM to PowerPC64 target, using OpenPower ELF v2 ABI URL:

    Contact: Mark Linimon (ports) <>
    Contact: Justin Hibbits (src) <>
    Contact: Piotr Kubaj (ports) <>

    The FreeBSD/powerpc project continues to make great strides. However, as we discovered at BSDCan 2019, we have not done a great job of letting people know.

    Key points:

    • powerpc64 src on recent hardware has been production-quality for over a year now.
    • powerpc64 ports has been developer-quality for over 18 months now.

    The main targeted platforms:

    • powerpc64 on IBM POWER8 and POWER9 chips (the most recent available). This is the primary focus going forward. FreeBSD 12 is required; FreeBSD 13 is recommended.
    • powerpc64 on older Apple Power Macs, on a continuing but secondary basis. Any FreeBSD version should work.
    • powerpc64 on x5000. However, this is still developer-only quality. FreeBSD 13 is recommended.
    • powerpcspe on Amiga A1222. However, this is still developer-only quality. FreeBSD 13 is recommended.

    The software status:

    • powerpc*/12 and earlier still remain on the antiquated gcc4.2.1 in base.
    • powerpc*/13 will soon be switched to llvm90 in base. A great deal of work has been undertaken to ensure as few regressions as possible. Once that switch has occurred (see llvm-elfv2 link above), powerpc*/13 support on gcc4.2.1 will no longer be a priority.
    • package sets are available for powerpc64/12 (quarterly) and powerpc64/13 (default) through the usual method.
    • Firefox works on powerpc64 using experimental (not-yet committed) patches,
    • As of the most recent package build on powerpc64/13 (still gcc4.2.1), the following statistics apply:
      Queued Built Failed Skipped Ignored
      33306 30514 245 1686 861
    • More ports fixes are being committed every day.

    Also, Piotr would like to thank the FreeBSD Foundation for funding his personal Talos, and Raptor (via its IntegriCloud subsidiary) for loaning a server on which runs.

    The team would like to thank IBM for the loan of two POWER8 machines, and Oregon State University (OSU) for providing the hosting. As well, we would like to thank the clusteradm team for keeping the Tyan POWER8 machines online that are hosted at NYI.

    NXP ARM64 SoC support

    Contact: Marcin Wojtas <>
    Contact: Artur Rojek <>

    The Semihalf team initiated working on FreeBSD support for the NXP LS1046A SoC

    LS1046A are quad-core 64-bit ARMv8 Cortex-A72 processors with integrated packet processing acceleration and high speed peripherals including 10 Gb Ethernet, PCIe 3.0, SATA 3.0 and USB 3.0 for a wide range of networking, storage, security and industrial applications.

    Completed since the last update:

    • DPAA Network interface support
    • SD/MMC
    • USB3.0
    • I2C
    • GPIO

    In progress:

    • QSPI
    • Network performance improvements


    • Upstreaming of developed features. This work is expected to be submitted/merged to HEAD in the Q4 of 2019.

    This project was sponsored by Alstom Group.

    Userland Programs

    Changes affecting the base system and programs in it.

    gets(3) retirement

    Contact: Ed Maste <>

    gets is an obsolete C library routine for reading a string from standard input. It was removed from the C standard as of C11 because there was no way to use it safely. Prompted by a comment during Paul Vixie's talk at vBSDCon 2017 I started investigating what it would take to remove gets from libc.

    The patch was posted to Phabricator and refined several times, and the portmgr team performed several exp-runs to identify ports broken by the removal. Symbol versioning is used to preserve binary compatibility for existing software that uses gets.

    The change was committed in September, and will be in FreeBSD 13.0.

    This project was sponsored by The FreeBSD Foundation.


    Changes affecting the Ports Collection, whether sweeping changes that touch most of the tree, or individual ports themselves.


    FreshPorts URL:
    git_proc_commit code URL:
    Things you didn’t know FreshPorts can do URL:

    Contact: Dan Langille <>

    FreshPorts consolidates commits into an easy-to-follow format so you can track changes to your favorite ports. It also processes src, doc, and www commit. FreshPorts parses incoming emails and refreshes the database with what it finds.

    In early September I started looking at how FreshPorts could use a git repository for processing commits. The result was an approach for identifying new commits and for iterating through them.

    The next idea was commit hooks but the most interesting bit of that exercise was commit iteration.

    At the EuroBSDCon 2019 FreeBSD Developer summit, I wrote up a small requirements section and then received great help from two sources:

    • Jan-Piet MENS recommended a Python library and it turned out to be great
    • Sergey Kozlov wrote Python code to create xml using that Python library

    On the trip home, I was able to get the code to parse a git commit into XML and loaded into a FreshPorts database.

    Returning home from the conference, I created a new FreshPorts instance for processing git based on the above. The website has needed no changes related to git.

    The remaining tasks:

    • automate the script (git pull, etc)
    • detect new commits (for later iteration)
    • design a light-weight git hook

    Event: EuroBSDCon 2019 Hackathon Sponsored by: Intel Corporation (work done by Sergey Kozlov)

    Java on FreeBSD

    OpenJDK 11 repository at FreeBSD GitHub URL:

    Contact: Greg Lewis <>

    Over the last few quarters there has been considerable work in improving support for Java 11 and higher, with some work being backported to Java 8.

    Starting with the initial release in March on amd64, over the intervening months FreeBSD support was added for features such as:

    • Java Flight Recorder
    • HotSpot Serviceability Agent
    • HotSpot Debugger
    • DTrace
    • Javac Server
    • Java Sound
    • SCTP

    In addition, support for the aarch64, i386 and powerpc64 architectures was also added.

    With most features supported, attention turned to compliance, using the internal JDK test suite as a method of measuring this. Most work during the third quarter has focused on this, with test failures dropping from 50+ failures to only 2 tier1 test failures (which don't appear to impact functionality at all). Some significant fixes include:

    • A stack overflow crash
    • Errors in external process handling
    • The unpack200 utility (on little endian systems)
    • HotSpot Debugger functionality such as thread enumeration
    • Networking functionality

    Finally, this work has been forward ported to Java 12 and 13, with FreeBSD gaining support for these versions on or just after the day of release.

    Note that this work has been a collaboration with many others. While there are too many contributors to list here (please take a look at the commit history of the GitHub repository), I'd like to recognise Kurt Miller of OpenBSD for his tireless work as a co-collaborator on Java for BSD through many years.

    I'm also grateful to the sponsorship of the FreeBSD Foundation, which has allowed me to focus on this work for Q3.

    This project was sponsored by FreeBSD Foundation.

    KDE on FreeBSD

    KDE FreeBSD URL:
    KDE Community FreeBSD URL:

    Contact: Adriaan de Groot <>

    The KDE on FreeBSD project packages the software produced by the KDE Community for FreeBSD. The software includes a full desktop environment, the art application and hundreds of other applications that can be used on any FreeBSD desktop machine.

    Along with KDE itself, the team maintains the Qt libraries, the CMake build system, and a handful of other C++ libraries used in the KDE stack.

    The upstream releases KDE Frameworks (libraries) on a monthly cycle, KDE Plasma (the desktop environment) quarterly and a collection of KDE Applications (usable everywhere) twice a year. The KDE on FreeBSD team chased a dozen updates to these components so that FreeBSD remains one of the most up-to-date systems with KDE software (and Qt).

    A large (and possibly breaking, still needs more investigation) change came with the release to KDE's Digikam 6.3.0, which stopped using its previous plugins system (the "old" plugins are still used by other KDE software).

    A new entry in the net-im category was added for Ruqola, a client for rich instant-messaging.

    CMake was updated twice. This forces the rebuild of several thousand C++-based ports. The KDE on FreeBSD team then fixes those ports, regardless of whether the error is in the CMake update, or in the upstream code. These updates tend to take a large amount of effort, since they touch unfamiliar (and often very-very-legacy) code.

    The open bugs list grew to 24 this quarter. It tends to hover around 20 items as new things come in and old ones are resolved. We welcome detailed bug reports and patches. KDE packaging updates are prepared in a copy of the ports repository on GitHub and then merged in SVN. We welcome pull requests there as well.

    Ports Collection

    About FreeBSD Ports URL:
    Contributing to Ports URL:
    FreeBSD Ports Monitoring URL:
    Ports Management Team URL:

    Contact: René Ladan <>
    Contact: FreeBSD Ports Management Team <>

    The FreeBSD Ports Management Team, tasked with overseeing the Ports Tree and its committers, reports that the following events happened during 2019Q3:

    The number of ports grew to just under 38,000 during the last quarter. We have just over 2,000 open ports PRs, of which 400 are unassigned. In this period, 169 committers made 7,340 commits to HEAD and 561 commits to the quarterly branch. This shows that the trend of last quarter of increased activity is continuing.

    During the last quarter, we welcomed Santhosh Raju (fox@) and Dmitri Goutnik (dmgk@) to the team, and said goodbye to gabor@. During the last quarter, feld@ decided to step down from the portmgr@ and ports-secteam@ teams. We would like to thank them for their past services.

    In the last three months, bapt@ put on his engineering hat and released a new version of pkg (1.12), added support for overlays to the Ports Tree, fixed two Make targets (deinstall-depends and reinstall), and cleaned up

    On the infrastructure side, USES=pure became obsolete and has therefore been removed, and two new USES, xorg and xorg-cat have been added and replace the old Two new keywords, ldconfig and ldconfig-linux, were added to simplify formatting of package lists.

    A number of default versions changed: Lazarus to 2.0.4, Linux to CentOS 7, LLVM to 9.0, Perl to 5.30, PostgreSQL to 11, and Ruby to 2.6. Of the big user-visible ports, Firefox got updated to 69.0.1, Firefox-esr to 68.1.0, Chromium to 76.0.3809.132, and Xfce to 4.14.

    During the last quarter, antoine@ ran 48 exp-runs to test package updates, test updating, test the new ldconfig and ldconfig-linux keywords, test default version updates, test the new xorg and xorg-cat USES, test base updates, and test various improvements to Go and Ruby.

    XFCE 4.14 update

    XFCE 4.14 announce URL:

    Contact: Guido Falsi <>

    On September 19th the XFCE desktop environment ports have been updated to the recently released XFCE 4.14 version.

    These updates include upgrades of all the main XFCE components to the latest versions which have been migrated to GTK3, with few exceptions. Base components still require and link to GTK2 in addition to GTK3 to allow older GTK2 XFCE applications, for example panel plugins, to keep working.

    Due to this change the gtk-xfce-engine theme is deprecated since it only supports GTK2. The XFCE metaport by default installs the greybird theme, but it is not enabled by default.

    This new version also includes now it's own xfce4-screensaver program which is installed by default.

    Finally the default Display Manager on which XFCE depends has been changed to LightDM.

    Some regressions were reported in bugzilla. In particular the one affecting most users is a regression in the window manager: on specific graphic display hardware the window manager fails to properly draw window decorations, which appear black and blocky on affected systems.

    This problem has also been reported in the upstream bug tracker and a solution is being sought.

    If anyone is experiencing this display glitch and is able to test, please contact to help trying to figure out a solution.

    Third-Party Projects

    Many projects build upon FreeBSD or incorporate components of FreeBSD into their project. As these projects may be of interest to the broader FreeBSD community, we sometimes include brief updates submitted by these projects in our quarterly report. The FreeBSD project makes no representation as to the accuracy or veracity of any claims in these submissions.

    ClonOS: virtualization platform on top of FreeBSD Operating System

    ClonOS 19.09 URL:

    Contact: Oleg Ginzburg <>

    What is ClonOS?

    ClonOS is a turnkey open-source platform based on FreeBSD and the CBSD framework. ClonOS offers a complete web UI for an easy control, deployment and management of FreeBSD jails containers and bhyve/Xen hypervisor virtual environments.

    ClonOS is currently the only available platforms which allow both Xen and bhyve hypervisors to coexist on the same host. Since ClonOS is a FreeBSD-based platform, it has the ability to create and manage jails natively, allowing you to run FreeBSD applications without losing performance.

    ClonOS/CBSD 2019Q3 Status Report

    • Added support for cloud-init (Linux/BSD VMs) and cloudbase-init (Windows VMs). It gives the ability to use FreeBSD as IaaS platform for instant deployment and usage of virtual machines based on bhyve hypervisor.
    • Project started to use own cloud images for better stability and resiliency.
    • New mirrors in France, US and Canada were added for distributing ISO/cloud-init images in addition to Russia, Latvia and Ukraine.
    • Now we're using Jenkins CI for testing regular ClonOS builds: Update clonos packages (Thanks to Daniel Shafer)
    • New pkg repository was deployed to support ClonOS installation from packages (at this moment only FreeBSD-12 packages are available) ClonOS package repo (Thanks to Daniel Shafer)

    Open issues and tasks:

    • Volunteers, contributors and testers are urgently needed to distribute ClonOS on FreeBSD environments.
    • We'd like to expand our mirrors number geographically, your help and contribution will be much appriciated.
    • We're urgently looking for hosting sponsorship for various developing and testing activities.

    ENA FreeBSD Driver Update


    Contact: Michal Krawczyk <>
    Contact: Maciej Bielski <>
    Contact: Marcin Wojtas <>

    ENA (Elastic Network Adapter) is the smart NIC available in the virtualized environment of Amazon Web Services (AWS). The ENA driver supports multiple transmit and receive queues and can handle up to 100 Gb/s of network traffic, depending on the instance type on which it is used.

    ENAv2 has been under development for FreeBSD, similar to Linux and DPDK. Since the last update internal review and improvements of the patches were done, followed by validation on various AWS instances.

    Completed since the last update:

    • Verification and review of the NETMAP support
    • Mapping of the memory as WC on A1 instances in order to enable LLQ mode


    • Upstream of NETMAP support
    • Upstream of the fix for LLQ mode on A1 instances Inc

    Nomad pot driver - Orchestrating jails via nomad

    Nomad pot driver URL:
    Pot project URL:

    Contact: Luca Pizzamiglio <>
    Contact: Esteban Barrios <>

    An experimental project has started to provide jail orchestration based on nomad and the jail framework pot, similarly to how orchestration works with docker.

    This model allows us to split the jail creation and the jail deployment. Jail images can be created and exported using the pot framework. The images can be deployed and orchestrated using nomad. A driver has been developed to allow nomad to interact with pot.

    One of the goals of this project is to use non-persistent jails as containers, allowing us to:

    • define containers similar to Docker (but not identical, because the underlaying OS is different)
    • identify potential missing features in FreeBSD to support such a computational model

    In the next quarter, we will launch the first service based on this project.

    Next steps are:

    • provide more guides and howtos
    • improve stability, extending the tests suite
    • improving tooling to create/manage images

    This project was sponsored by trivago N.V..


    Links URL:

    Contact: Alfonso Sabato Siciliano <>

    The FreeBSD kernel maintains a Management Information Base (MIB) where a component (object) represents a parameter of the system. The sysctl system call explores the MIB to find an object by its Object Identifier (OID) and calls its handler to get or set the value of the parameter. It is often necessary to find an object not to call its handler but to get its info (description, type, name, next object, etc.), so the kernel provides an undocumented interface implemented in kern_sysctl.c.

    sysctlinfo is a new interface to explore the sysctl MIB and to pass the info of an object to the userland. The project provides: a README, a manual, helper macros, examples, tests and converted tools.

    Primarily sysctlinfo provides a new set of sysctl nodes (corresponding to the kernel interface) to handle an object up to CTL_MAXNAME levels: sysctl.entryfakename, sysctl.entrydesc, sysctl.entrylabel, sysctl.entrykind, sysctl.entryfmt and sysctl.entrynextleaf. Moreover new features have been implemented: the support for the capability mode, sysctl.entryname, sysctl.entryidbyname and sysctl.entrynextnode. To get all the info about an object the kernel needs to find it many times, then the new sysctl.entryallinfo* nodes were written, they are 30% more efficient. Finally, *byname nodes were added: they search the object by its name avoiding to call sysctl.name2oid (or similar) to explore the MIB just to find the corresponding OID.

    sysctlinfo can be installed via sysutils/sysctlinfo-kmod or by applying the sysctlinfo.diff patch (more efficient than the module because uses a shared lock). The interface is used by deskutils/sysctlview 1.5, sysutils/nsysctl 1.2 and the converted version of sysctl(8), sysctlbyname(3), sysctlnametomib(3), they should be used to get the value of an object with 23/24 levels or if some level-name has only the '\0' character. In the future a new byname node will be added to allow sysctlbyname() to manage a CTLTYPE_NODE with a no-NULL handler, example sysctlbyname("\<pid\>").

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