DragonFly BSD


DragonFly Release 2.6

07 May 2010 (2.6.3)

The DragonFly 2.6 release is here!

Three release options are now available for 32-bit: Our bare-bones CD ISO, a bare-bones bootable USB disk-key image (minimum 1G USB stick needed), and a GUI bootable USB disk-key image with a full X environment. The GUI USB image replaces the DVD ISO image we had in the previous release, to work around issues with DVDs simply being too slow to boot an X environment from.

Two release options are available for 64-bit: Our bare-bones CD ISO and our bare-bones bootable USB disk-key image. The 64-bit release is now fully supported.

Currently the gui disk-key image is not yet available due to some late issues with pkgsrc. It will be put up as soon as the issues are resolved.


The release ISO images should be available on most of the mirrors. If the ISO is not available on a certain mirror, please try another one or download it from the DragonFly FTP server.

MD5 sums

pkgsrc packages

We offer over 8000 pre-built pkgsrc packages for this release. The pkg_radd(1) utility may be used to download pre-built binary packages. The path can be overridden by setting BINPKG_SITES in /etc/settings.conf.

To get a list of all packages, let pkg_search(1) download the summary file for that release:

# pkg_search -d

We supply a Makefile in /usr to track the pkgsrc tree. We also supply a Git mirror of the NetBSD pkgsrc CVS repo as well as the pkgsrc/wip (work in progress) repo at git://git.dragonflybsd.org/pkgsrc.git. We recommend that users use it, instead of pulling from NetBSD with CVS. Our Git mirror is updated four times a day.

DragonFly 2.6.x Special Installation and Upgrade Notes

2.6.3 - 2.6.3 is a stabilization and pkgsrc compatibility pass. It fixes a serious kernel crash related to sendfile() operation and adjusts the extattr file ABI so libarchive compiles again.

2.6.2 - Users running a late 2.5 or the 2.6.1 release are urged to upgrade to 2.6.2 or later as soon as possible. 2.6.2 fixes a serious HAMMER filesystem corruption bug related to reblocking full or nearly full HAMMER filesystems.

VirtualBox, Virtual PC, and VMWare users - Unless your virtual hard disk is 50G or larger, we recommend doing a UFS install and not the default HAMMER install. We also recommend installing from the CD ISO and not the DVD ISO.

Virtual PC users - Virtual PC does not supply serial numbers for the virtual disks. The system may need to be manually directed in the boot loader if the disk identifier changes. (Hit ? in the boot loader for a list of available volumes.)

Binary packages issue - Due to bugs in pkgsrc-2009Q4 we had to use pkgsrc-current for the x86_64 img/iso and both GUI images for 2.6.1. The i386 img/iso uses pkgsrc-2009Q4. The binary packages on avalon are thus a bit out of date for the x86_64 and GUI images. Both i386 and x86_64 binary packages have been upgraded to pkgsrc-2010Q1 for 2.6.3.

disklabel64 issue - The installer may fail to install a 64-bit disklabel due to a snooping bug in the kernel if a 32-bit disklabel was previously present on the drive. If you get this failure, you can re-run fdisk -IB from a shell and then retry. CAUTION: USE THIS METHOD ONLY IF YOU ARE DEDICATING THE DRIVE TO DRAGONFLY!!!

DragonFly 2.6.1 Release Notes

Release Improvements

Kernel changes

  • Ported tmpfs (efficient memory filesystem) from NetBSD
  • Added support for minidumps
  • Added swapcache support for SSDs
  • Ported POSIX Message Queues from NetBSD (Google Summer of Code Project).
  • Updated Linuxulator (now runs java, flash,...) for i386
  • fixed vinum root mounts
  • Added watchdog framework (compatible with watchdogd(8))
  • Added gpio framework
  • Ported minidumps from FreeBSD (enabled by default)
  • Added vkernel64 (64-bit vkernels - experimental)
  • Added hotplug pseudo-device
  • Removed msfbufs and reimplemented sfbufs as a consumer of the newly added lwbufs (lightweight buffers)
  • fixed checkpointing
  • Updated opencrypto from FreeBSD-current
  • Updated ACPI from FreeBSD 7.2
  • Updated CPU initialization code From FreeBSD
  • Serious reduction in KVM use for i386
  • KVM expanded to 8GB for x86_64
  • Major performance fixes for random I/O

HAMMER changes

  • Updated to HAMMER version 4
  • snapshot settings and snapstops moved out of /snapshots and into meta-data
  • REDO generation and recovery added to support fast fsync
  • Extended 'hammer snapls' output to print mountpoints and snapshot notes.
  • 'hammer viconfig' takes editor preference into account now
  • Numerous low-memory deadlocks fixed

Hardware changes (non-networking)

  • uchcom(4): The driver for WinChipHead CH341/CH340 is now working stable
  • glxsb(4): The driver has been imported from FreeBSD
  • hifn(4): The driver has been fixed to work with updated opencrypto
  • cs5536: Added support for watchdog and gpio on this chip
  • nsclpcsio(4): The driver has been imported from OpenBSD
  • Geode LX: Enable identification and features of this CPU
  • New aibs(4) driver for ASUSTeK AI Booster ACPI ATK0110 voltage, temperature and fan sensors
  • New kate(4) and km(4) drivers for AMD Family 0Fh, 10h and 11h AMD64 temperature sensors
  • New aps(4) driver for ThinkPad Active Protection System accelerometer
  • New wbsio(4) driver for Winbond LPC Super I/O attachment of lm(4) on any ISA port

Hardware changes (networking)

  • Imported the alc(4) driver for Atheros AR8131/AR8132 NICs
  • Imported the e1000(4) driver from FreeBSD for Intel Pro/1000 NICs

Userland changes

  • null mounts now accept -o update
  • awk(1): increased input field separator width to handle extended regexps.
  • cpdup(1): added -VV option to verify file's contents and ignore mtime entirely.
  • mount_nfs(8): rdirplus is now the default
  • periodic(8) security now also reports pkgsrc vulnerabilities
  • watchdogd: import from OpenBSD
  • hotplugd(8): import from OpenBSD

amd64 related changes

  • amd64 has been renamed to x86_64
  • 64-bit vkernels now work on 64-bit boxes


  • The T/TCP extension is no longer supported

Contributed Software

  • Updated BIND to 9.5.2-P3 incl. DNSSEC support available by default
  • Updated SENDMAIL to 8.14.4
  • Updated wpa_supplicant to 0.6.10
  • Updated hostapd to 0.6.10
  • Updated groff to 1.20.1
  • Updated file to 5.04
  • Updated ncurses to 5.7
  • Updated top to 3.8beta1 including DragonFly specific patches
  • Updated less to 436
  • Updated openssh to 5.3p1 (with HPN patch)
  • Updated gcc 4.4 to 4.4.2
  • Added binutils 2.20
  • Added cryptodev support to OpenSSL

Security related

  • ssh server: change defaults for new installations to disallow plain text passwords and allow root login via public key

Big-ticket items

swapcache - This is a mechanism which allows an attached solid state drive to be used to cache data and/or meta-data for other filesystems. The meta-data caching feature is particularly useful for machines which manage millions of files. About 2 million inodes and their related blockmaps can be cached per gigabyte of SSD. DragonFly supports up to 32GB of swap, per swap device (up to four) on i386, and up to 512GB of swap, per swap device, on 64-bit, so a very large number of inodes can be cached. Please see the swapcache(8) manual page for more information.

HAMMER - Our filesystem now supports a REDO log on top of the UNDO log it already had. The filesystem will use the REDO log forward-log write and file-extend operations which allows fsync to accomplish its goals with only REDO log writes. This greatly improves the speed of fsync without weakening HAMMER's fast-recovery feature.

tmpfs - The tmpfs port we did from NetBSD is able to fully utilize the VM page cache on the system as well as swap space, with no duplication of data (unlike MFS) and very good cache characteristics which reduce or eliminate disk activity under nominal operation.