Interesting FreeBSD related projects: FreeWDE, mfsBSD and easyBSD

Every now and then when browsing the web and hopping from one link to another you sometimes come across some interesting little projects. Recently I’ve found the following three that I want to share with you:

FreeWDE – http://rop.gonggri.jp/?p=269

FreeWDE is a “minimal install” FreeBSD image that you can write to a USB stick or SD-card. When booted from, FreeWDE will ask some questions and then create an AES-256 encrypted partition on the same device. It will then copy the operating system there. You call tell FreeWDE to additionally install an unencrypted FAT32 (Windows) partition which will make a USB stick or SD-card seem like a normal storage device to Windows or Mac machines. It can hold your camera’s pictures or be used for files that you want to move in and out of an offline encrypted system. You can set sizes for all these partitions as well as for the encrypted swap. You can also opt to mount /tmp and /var/log as tmpfs ramdisks.

mfsBSDhttp://mfsbsd.vx.sk/

This is a set of scripts that generates a bootable image (and/or ISO file), that creates a working minimal installation of FreeBSD.

easyBSDhttp://www.fbsd-dev.org/v2/

EasyBSD is a FreeBSD Post Installation script. Now I can imagine you are asking yourself, ‘What does that mean?’ EasyBSD is a modular automation script designed to assist in the extensive post installation process that is required in FreeBSD. The following are modules that are included with EasyBSD, Checks, Update, Security, Networking, Firewall, Recommended Ports, Tips and Tweaks, Daemon, and Universe.

Are you aware of, or are you working on anything FreeBSD related that you want to share with the BSD Community? Why not announce it on this site?

FreeBSD 7.2 EoL coming soon

On June 30th, FreeBSD 7.2 will reach its End of Life and will no longer be supported by the FreeBSD Security Team. Users of this release are strongly encouraged to upgrade to FreeBSD 7.3 before that date; FreeBSD 7.3 will be supported until the end of March 2012. Please note that since FreeBSD 7.1 has been designated for ‘Extended’ support, it will continue to be supported until the end of January 2011, i.e., FreeBSD 7.1 will be supported longer than FreeBSD 7.2.

The End of Life date for FreeBSD 7.2 was originally announced as May 31, but was delayed by one month in accordance with Security Team policy in order to allow a 3 month window between the release of FreeBSD 7.3 and the End of Life of FreeBSD 7.2 to allow time for systems to be upgraded.

The freebsd-update(8) utility can be used to upgrade i386 and amd64 systems from 7.2-RELEASE (or 7.2-RELEASE-pX for some X) to 7.3-RELEASE using binary updates (i.e., without compiling from source) as described in the 7.3-RELEASE announcement; given an adequate internet connection, this process usually takes 15 minutes or less.

More: FreeBSD 7.2 EoL coming soon

Download FreeBSD 8.1 BETA1

FreeBSD 8.1 BETA1 is available for downloading on (most of) the mirrors, as mentioned on the FreeBSD Stable Mailinglist:

The first of the test builds for the FreeBSD 8.1 release cycle is now available for amd64, i386, ia64, powerpc, pc98, and sparc64 architectures. Files suitable for creating installation media or doing FTP based installs through the network should be on most of the FreeBSD mirror sites by now.

For those who cannot wait, this is the link: http://ftp.freebsd.org/pub/FreeBSD/ISO-IMAGES-i386/8.1/

You can change the link to a mirror closer to you by adding your country code, e.g.   http://ftp.dk.freebsd.org/ etc etc

FreeBSD Google SoC Projects started

The FreeBSD Project  received many applications from students  wanting to participate in Google’s Summer of Code program. This year 18 student proposals to work with the FreeBSD Project were accepted as part of this program.

For those with projects that were not accepted this year, the FreeBSD Project is always willing to help mentor students so they can learn more about operating system development through our normal community mailing lists and development forums. The FreeBSD Foundation can also be approached for project funding.

Read the official announcement (FreeBSD GSoC) for more information. The complete list of student projects selected for funding can be found in the FreeBSD Summer of Code wiki.

  • May 24: Start of coding
  • July 12-16: Mid-term Evaluations
  • August 9: End of coding
  • August 16-20: Final Evaluations

(FreeBSD Events Calendar)

iXsystems hosts MeetBSD California 2010

Open source server and storage solution provider iXsystems will once again host MeetBSD California. This year, MeetBSD will be an informal 2-Day BSD Camp taking place at Hacker Dojo in Mountain View, California on November 5th and 6th.

MeetBSD California promises to be a fun and engaging plunge into the BSD operating system world, just as it was back in 2008 when the event first took place. Allen Gunn, Executive Director of Aspiration, will facilitate this year’s “unconference”, which will consist of Break Out Sessions, Informal Discussions, and 5-10 minute “Lightning Talks” on a variety of open source development topics, including ZFS, HAST, jails, OS virtualization, and sysinstall.

MeetBSD California 2010 will culminate with an after-party taking place at Hacker Dojo on the evening of Saturday, November 6th.

Whether you’re interested in learning more about the BSD family of operating systems, or ready to share some of your FreeBSD wisdom, MeetBSD California 2010 will offer an enjoyable forum for lively discussion on a wide range of BSD-related topics.

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Release cycle for 8.1-RELEASE begun

Ken Smith made the following announcement on the FreeBSD Stable mailinglist with regards to the upcoming FreeBSD 8.1:

We are about a week away from starting code freeze for the 8.1-RELEASE release cycle. Since sometimes that means stable/8 gets a little less reliable due to higher than normal levels of developer activity I’ll adjust the branch to say it is 8.1-PRERELEASE now.

The target schedule for the release cycle is available here:  http://www.freebsd.org/releases/8.1R/schedule.html

And the wiki page to track the current status of the release (started but not heavily used yet) is here: http://wiki.freebsd.org/Releng/8.1TODO

The current target release date is July 9th, 2010. You can find these and other FreeBSD related dates in the FreeBSD Events Calendar.