delphij's Chaos


04 Apr 2004

FreeBSD: Let's get it better and better

Yesterday I have talked with Max Laier about the pf accessories, say, the spamd. He explained me why it is kept in ports/ and not the base system - this is to keep the base system small, and I completely agree this.

Also there’re many documentation works attracts my attention. I am interested in either src, ports and doc work and hence I subscribed to cvs-all. Marc Fonvieille [blackend@] has committed a new paragraph to ports chapter on handbook which says that users should check before installing new applications. With the excellent work of FreeBSD security officers (headed by nectar@) and other contributors, the vuxml is updated very often and contains many items, therefore it is essentially not practical to check it manually (you will likely to slip one or two items), and Simon L. Neilson thought that this is an overkill.

Seeing this, I submitted a patch describing the new portaudit mechanism, which tells the user to install security/portaudit and run a portaudit -F -a in prior to check whether there’re new outstanding security issues. When I was writing the patch, Marc explained why we should have that chapter: There’re many people to install FreeBSD from CD-ROM and without pointing them to the security database, they will likely ignore the potential security issues and may be died of this.

My proposaled patch removed Simon’s objection, and a slightly modified one gets committed after 56 minutes. Well… this will then marshalled into the Simplified Chinese version.

I am very happy that in every Open Source projects (no matter *BSD, Linux, or others) problems are always addressed and fixed soon, and by participating these activities, you get the reward that your work will be useful for others. Meanwhile, you get the chance to work with many people who are more experienced, and/or more clever.

I really don’t care whether I was credited on these works or even gets paid for these (of course nobody will refuse it if it’s possible, but that’s a bonus) - It’s Open Source, your helps is making it better and better everyday.