Current VS Stable VS Release

Thanks, I do understand the appeal of chroot(8) approaches, however:
  • the cutting of corners can be ultimately dissatisfying, or troublesome.
For example, not solved:

Its not cutting corners. If you think its 'cutting corners' then you do not understand it.

Its one of the ways how to do it. I do it all the time like that.

Here are the details.

An old topic, but CURRENT versus STABLE versus RELEASE remains topical.

  • create, activate then boot a ZFS boot environment before any upgrade (or other significant change) to the base OS, or a package
– then, it's almost certain that if you're cut or bloodied in the active environment, simple reactivation of the previous environment (plus a restart of the OS) will put things right for you.

Adapted from <>, with today's date as an example:
  1. as the root user
  2. bectl create 2021-10-08-a
  3. bectl activate 2021-10-08-a
  4. restart
Worth noting: a 2018 description of TrueOS as bleeding edge. TrueOS Desktop was well-respected and very user-oriented. I rarely felt bloodied there, thanks to ZFS boot environments.

New thread?
I don't see how this new uptake of this (very) old thread is related to the actual choice between -CURRENT versus -STABLE versus -RELEASE or their respective properties; perhaps I'm missing the point.

Since the [FreeBSD-Announce] Changes to the FreeBSD Support Model in February 2015, the support model of FreeBSD has changed in a significant way, so that information in the old part of the thread is IMO hardly relevant for FreeBSD today.

I think this change in support model is a good change although, it does seem to baffle/lead astray/give the wrong impression to a person new to FreeBSD, even (or perhaps especially) when such a person comes from another OS (that happens to have a different support model); see for example: LTS support and version clarifications and A quick explanation of FreeBSD release versions. It may also apply to a person who has already spent some (considerable) amount of time with the "new FreeBSD" but has not familiarized him/her-self with the actual support model of FreeBSD at the moment and the information that is being provided in for example: 24.4. Tracking a Development Branch.

IMHO, extending or riviving the thread in this manner may help—unintentionally—to signal the wrong message relating to the information in the old part of the thread.
Thank you,

… If you think its 'cutting corners'

I mean, for example, cutting out a restart of the operating system.

then you do not understand it.

I do understand it.

In addition, I understand what can go wrong when, for example, a restart of the OS is cut out.

If I recall correctly: we have at least two likely examples in FreeBSD Forums, plus the example that I recorded for you.
I mean, for example, cutting out a restart of the operating system.

When you use freebsd-update(8) on a live working system, then you need first reboot to boot into new kernel because older userspace can work with newer kernel and not the otherwise. So in first step you can not install both kernel and userspace because the currently running kernel is older then the userspace you want to install - so one reboot required.

Now you boot with newer kernel but still old userspace so you need to install userspace now. Now you need to reboot so you will have system with newer kernel and userspace booted. That was second phase and reboot.
In the third freebsd-update(8) step you have new kernel userspace installed and booted but now you need (should) remove the old and unneeded files and libraries. So you remove them but now you need to reboot again to have clean system booted without these 'old' files. Thats third reboot.

When you do these steps in ZFS Boot Environment you are not working on a 'live' system - just on plain files laying on the filesystem. That is why these reboots are not needed. Also keep in mind that only reboots are omitted. All other steps are done the same way as freebsd-update(8) man page states.

That is why this is not cutting corners. You only reboot once into newly and fully updated system.

This is also the default way of doing upgrade in Solaris/Illumos system if that helps.

Again, thank you, I understand those things.

Below, a reminder for you (from mid-February) of something beginning to go wrong:


The VirtualBox snapshot that preceded the demonstration was deleted, by me, long ago.

If you like, I can attempt to reproduce what's pictured. Equally, others may make attempts (not necessarily with 12.1-RELEASE).

… If I recall correctly: we have at least two likely examples in FreeBSD Forums, …

At the time of writing, I can't find the first example to which I responded (a guess: maybe because the person who encountered a problem did not write the word chroot). If I recall correctly, a moderator was a participant and there was no argument with my observation.
What's below belongs under Which browser(s) do you prefer? however, posting there might trigger another complaint about age. So, apologies (now) for taking things even further off-topic.

I don't see how this … thread is related … -CURRENT versus -STABLE versus -RELEASE …

Not a facetious question: please, which browser did you prefer when you began reading the recent posts?

Chromium-based browsers, and Apple Safari (in macOS Yosemite and greater), are probably the worst offenders for failing to show the title. There's simply no title bar:


Compare with Firefox (a popped-up window, for emphasis):


XenForo also ceases to show the title, within the page, after scrolling down a little or paging.

True: chroot is off-topic from the choice between CURRENT, STABLE and RELEASE.

My first post here was (I believe) on topic to choosing CURRENT, without reference to chroot, and originated as a spin-off from <>.

SirDice would you like to move the chroot thread to a more appropriate topic? Thanks.


… At the time of writing, I can't find …

– if I can rediscover that lost topic, it might be a good place for the move.
chroot(8) and freebsd-update(8)

… The VirtualBox snapshot that preceded the demonstration was deleted, by me, long ago. …

I recreated a machine. A fresh installation of an outdated RELEASE using a FreeBSD-provided installer.

If we're lucky, a reader:
  • will pay strict attention to one set of on-screen instructions alone
  • will know, from experience, to ignore other on-screen instructions.
A less experienced reader:
  • might, understandably, not know to ignore things
  • might follow the most recent on-screen instruction ☑

chroot, freebsd-update fetch, as instructed.png

The result, in this case:

chroot, 12.2 mistreated as 12.1 for freebsd-update fetch.pngchroot, module 'kernel' exists but with wrong version.pngchroot, mount root failed, error 2, unkown file system.png

The mangled environment, not bootable, is not a show-stopper.

At the next boot, the loader menu Boot Environments routine (screenshots under <>) can be used to temporarily activate a usable environment.