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FreeBSD Ports and Packages Installation and upgrading of ports and packages on FreeBSD.

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Old 19th September 2008
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Default One small question about portupgrade (and yes I HAVE read the man-pages!)

So I've read manpages on portupgrade and portinstall (same program i know)

and I've been doing plenty of installs with "portinstall -P" to install packages, because I have a plenty slow machine, and I have yet to have been told any real advantages to compiling over installing packages, so I install packages

anywho!

upgrading

can I just run "portupgrade -aP" to install all upgrades and install them from packages when found?

How often will fresh updates be rolled into packages for my convenience? How often are things made into packages in general?

also, is running "portupgrade -aP" safe? does it run the pkgdb commands necessary to keep my system well-maintained?

is this the optimal method for updating a machine?
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Old 19th September 2008
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I have a fairly slow laptop (Sempron Mobile 3300+, 512DDR), so I do likewise.


Code:
# script /root/portupgrade_script.tonight
# portupgrade -arRbP --batch -l ~/portupgrade_log.tonight

 ... coffee break

I do not personally *recommend* doing it that way, but it works for me and has been quite reliable; with less trouble then making packages on a faster PC to transfer over.


if a problem needing suitable user intervention occurs, you'll have to fix the pkgdb, either semi-automatically or manually. Most issues I've had with pkgdb, come from managing changed dependencies.
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Old 19th September 2008
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Cool more confused

so what SHOULD I do?

What command should i punch in?

what's the freebsd equivalent for "apt-get update" and "apt-get upgrade"?
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Old 19th September 2008
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I don't think there is an exact equivalent to the apt-get commands you mentioned. Keep in mind the distinction between the base system and third-party software (ports) in FreeBSD land.

There are source (rebuilding world) and binary (freebsd-update) options for upgrading the base system. There are numerous ways to upgrade your ports.

Can you explain what you're aiming to accomplish here apart from upgrading for the sake of upgrading? (Is there a certain port you need a security fix for, or the latest version of? etc.)
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Old 19th September 2008
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I'd just like to know how, in case a (well, I really don't care about security on my desktops) but certainly FEATURES come out, and I'd like to upgrade those

and I'd like to know now, and this is mostly tinkering for the sake of tinkering, I'm trying to learn about the freebsd underpinnings of the pc-bsd installation, once i'm comfortable enough, i'm going to venture off into pure-freebsd land for my daily desktop usage

ALSO, I'm using it daily as a desktop to help me understand how to use it as a server, (package management and maintanence etc. etc.)

but yeah, how do I upgrade "for the sake of upgrading" as the freebsd community seems to frown upon?

I like being able to say my system is "fully up to date"
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Old 19th September 2008
DrJ DrJ is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wubrgamer View Post
I like being able to say my system is "fully up to date"
I'd caution you that this is not really a good idea. One example is the large meta-packages like Gnome or KDE, and I'll use the former as an example.

You install and upgrade it from the gnome2 metaport, which has all the various bits and pieces. When a new release, major or minor, comes out, you can update the metaport, and UPDATING has the details on how to do that. The minor updates are (usually ) no big deal, but the updating between major versions is. You have to do it right, or you break things.

Once that release is out, the component pieces continue to be updated. So if your computer is "fully up-to-date" you have some of these pieces that are not intended to be used unless you know what you are doing. Between minor releases this usually is not a big deal. But if you hit the boundary between the last minor release and a major upgrade, you can cause all sorts of mischief.

So it depends on what you mean by having your computer be fully up-to-date. Gnome2 can be current, but the libraries and some of the pieces may not be.

I would never, ever, recommend that someone upgrade all the ports at once. Unless you run a simple system this method is guaranteed to result in breakage that will take a long time to fix.

Instead, upgrade it in pieces. I break it roughly as X11 and video drivers, gnome2 and its pieces, and "other" including math packages, things like gimp and ImageMagick and Acroread -- in general, ports that do not really depend on a lot of other stuff. That's not clean either, but that has worked pretty well for me over the years. But keep your eye out for upgrade to things like gettext, which require every port to be upgraded.

I also think that having something that works is much better than getting the latest and greatest new features. Usually there are new bugs that are introduced too. For example, I would never recommend that a new major update of Gnome be installed unless you like hunting bugs or you REALLY need something new. Usually by .1 it has settled down enough to be pretty useful, and by the .3 (namely, just before the new version) it works really well.

YMMV
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Old 20th September 2008
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2004 - 2008 ... How I upgrade ports has changed probably
!!_ weekly_ !! ''by bits and pieces". What is a suitable way here,
probably not a suitable way for 40 percent of others who use
FreeBSD...
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Old 20th September 2008
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I don't understand your question entirely, but I keep an eye on the major metaports I use: X11, Gnome and "the rest". When X11 has a major upgrade, I let it pass for a while until it settles down. You can keep an eye on the lists for the issues.

I have hunted down a lot of bugs in Gnome, so I often upgrade at the beta stage, and contribute bug reports. Usually I find a dozen or so. There are more early on, and by .1 the port is in decent shape.

The others are less important to me, and don't change as much.

The bottom line is that you can keep an eye on what is happening from the lists, and somewhat from what ports are not up-to-date. For gnome, there are all sorts of ports that upgrade along the way; until there is an upgrade to gnome2, well, don't upgrade any of those (unless there is a bug that bites you) until the metaport upgrade. Then decide if you want it.

Sadly, you have to know what you have installed, how those ports relate to other things you have installed, and keep an eye on what is upgraded and when. It does take some work.

You can get the hang of it after a while. But simply doing an upgrade of all ports whenever you decide to do it is just not wise. FWIW, I keep an eye on things and spend a day or two upgrading every three months or so. I go from source, but using packages is not really that different if you know that the packages have some delay in being built.
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