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1subject: FreeBSD 6.3-RELEASEPromote 0 Bookmark 02008-01-19quote  



Date: Fri, 18 Jan 2008 14:00:11 -0500
From: Ken Smith <>
Subject: [FreeBSD-Announce] FreeBSD 6.3 Released

The FreeBSD Release Engineering Team is pleased to announce the availability of FreeBSD 6.3-RELEASE. This release continues the development of the 6-STABLE branch providing performance and stability improvements, many bug fixes and new features. Some of the highlights:

  • KDE updated to 3.5.8, GNOME updated to 2.20.1, Xorg updated to 7.3

  • BIND updated to 9.3.4

  • sendmail updated to 8.14.2

  • lagg(4) driver ported from OpenBSD/NetBSD

  • unionfs file system re-implemented

  • freebsd-update(8) now supports an upgrade command

For a complete list of new features and known problems, please see the online release notes and errata list, available at:

For more information about FreeBSD release engineering activities, please see:

The FreeBSD Security Team intends to support 6.3-RELEASE until January 31st, 2010.


FreeBSD 6.3-RELEASE is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Jun-ichiro Hagino, known throughout the Internet community as itojun, for his visionary work on the IPv6 protocol and his many other contributions to the Internet and BSD communities.


FreeBSD 6.3-RELEASE is now available for the alpha, amd64, i386, pc98, and sparc64 architectures. It can be installed from bootable ISO images or over the network; the required files can be downloaded via FTP or BitTorrent as described in the sections below. While some of the smaller FTP mirrors may not carry all architectures, they will all generally contain the more common ones, such as i386 and amd64.

MD5 and SHA256 hashes for the release ISO images are included at the bottom of this message.

The contents of the ISO images provided as part of the release has changed for most of the architectures. Using the i386 architecture as an example, there are ISO images named ``bootonly'', ``disc1'', ``disc2'', ``disc3'', and ``docs''. The ``bootonly'' image is suitable for booting a machine to do a network based installation using FTP or NFS. The ``disc1'', ``disc2'', and ``disc3'' images are used to do a full installation that includes a basic set of packages and does not require network access to an FTP or NFS server during the installation. In addition, ``disc1'' supports booting into a live CD-based filesystem and system rescue mode. The ``docs'' image has all of the documentation for all supported languages. Most people will find that ``disc1'', ``disc2'' and ``disc3'' are all that are needed. If you intend to install ports from source instead of using the pre-built packages included with the release only ``disc1'' is needed.

FreeBSD 6.3-RELEASE can also be purchased on CD-ROM from several vendors. One of the vendors that will be offering FreeBSD 6.3-based products is:


6.3-RELEASE ISOs are available via BitTorrent. A collection of torrent files to download the images is available at:


The primary mirror site is:

However, before trying the central FTP site, please check your regional mirror(s) first by going to:


Any additional mirror sites will be labeled ftp2, ftp3 and so on.

More information about FreeBSD mirror sites can be found at:

For instructions on installing FreeBSD, please see Chapter 2 of The FreeBSD Handbook. It provides a complete installation walk-through for users new to FreeBSD, and can be found online at:

FreeBSD Update

Starting with FreeBSD 6.3, the freebsd-update(8) utility supports binary upgrades of i386 and amd64 systems systems running earlier FreeBSD releases, release candidates, and betas. Users upgrading to FreeBSD 6.3 from older releases (in particular, older than 6.3-RC1) will need to download an updated version of freebsd-update(8) that supports upgrading to a new release.

# fetch

Downloading and verifying the digital signature for the tarball (signed by the FreeBSD Security Officer's PGP key) is highly recommended.

# fetch

# gpg --verify freebsd-update-upgrade.tgz.asc freebsd-update-upgrade.tgz

The new freebsd-update(8) can then be extracted and run as follows:

# tar -xf freebsd-update-upgrade.tgz

# sh -f freebsd-update.conf -r 6.3-RELEASE upgrade

# sh -f freebsd-update.conf install

The system must be rebooted with the newly installed kernel before continuing.

# shutdown -r now

Finally, needs to be run one more time to install the new userland components, and the system needs to be rebooted one last time:

# sh -f freebsd-update.conf install

# shutdown -r now

For more information, see:


Many companies donated equipment, network access, or man-hours to finance the release engineering activities for FreeBSD 6.3 including The FreeBSD Foundation, FreeBSD Systems, Hewlett-Packard, Yahoo!, Network Appliances, and Sentex Communications.

The release engineering team for 6.3-RELEASE includes:

Ken Smith <> Release Engineering, amd64, i386 sparc64 Release Building, Mirror Site Coordination
Robert Watson <> Release Engineering, Security
Maxime Henrion <> Release Engineering
Bruce A. Mah <> Release Engineering, Documentation
George Neville-Neil <> Release Engineering
Hiroki Sato <> Release Engineering, Documentation
Murray Stokely <> Release Engineering
Wilko Bulte <> Alpha Release Building
Takahashi Yoshihiro <> PC98 Release Building
Kris Kennaway <> Package Building
Joe Marcus Clarke <> Package Building
Erwin Lansing <> Package Building
Mark Linimon <> Package Building
Pav Lucistnik <> Package Building
Colin Percival <> Security Officer
Peter Wemm <> Bittorrent Coordination


FreeBSD is a registered trademark of The FreeBSD Foundation.

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