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Changes and NetBSD News in 2000

December 2000

November 2000

October 2000

September 2000

August 2000

July 2000

June 2000

May 2000

April 2000

March 2000

February 2000

January 2000


December 2000

27 Dec 2000 - NetBSD/next68k SCSI support update (top)

Darrin B. Jewell has spent some time reviving the SCSI effort for NetBSD/next68k. At this point, he's using a SCSI mounted root partition and things seem to be working.

Darrin has uploaded diffs relative to the netbsd-1-5-RELEASE tree at:

He has also uploaded a GENERIC kernel with scsi enabled that he is now successfully using at:

Darrin will try to merge these into -current and possibly pull them up to the 1.5 branch in the near future. There is additional work to do, such as getting a more functional disklabel(8) and installboot(8) going. There are certainly still driver kinks that will need to be ironed out, but it seems we're over the hump. If anyone is interested in picking up some of these pieces and hacking on them, please do.

24 Dec 2000 - New developer (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome a new developer:

  • Nishimura Takeshi, , who will be responsible for the NetBSD/x68k official releases, binary snapshots, and other x68k-related hacks.

21 Dec 2000 - Recent ftpd enhancements (top)

Luke Mewburn has been improving ftpd lately. What follows is a list of recent changes:

  • New ftpd.conf(5) directive:
    • 'advertise' - change the address advertised by PASV (useful for certain firewall environments)
  • New command line option:
    • '-X' - syslog wu-ftpd style xferlog entries

20 Dec 2000 - ftpd security patch for 1.4.x and 1.5 (top)

NetBSD-SA2000-018 has been released, with a patch for a possible remote root exploit in ftpd.

20 Dec 2000 - kerberos/telnetd security patch for 1.5 (top)

NetBSD-SA2000-017 has been released, with a patch for security problems in the kerberos library and the telnet daemon.

17 Dec 2000 - New developer (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome a new developer:

  • Jesse Off, , who will be working primarily on the LFS filesystem. Welcome aboard, Jesse!

14 Dec 2000 - Wasabi CDs and other merchandise (top)

Wasabi Systems is now selling NetBSD 1.5 CDs. The CDs boot on numerous architectures, and they are delivered in snazzy Wasabi green CD cases. This is in addition to the other NetBSD gear which they sell, including beer steins, coffee mugs, bumper stickers, etc.

A big welcome is in order to Wasabi, which is a new company, providing commercial NetBSD support and development. Many of Wasabi's staff are NetBSD developers, and we're happy to have a commercial entity, with all the resources it can provide, this closely associated with the NetBSD Project.

We look forward to continued contributions, both technical and otherwise, from Wasabi and their team.

14 Dec 2000 - plex86 working on NetBSD/i386 (top)

The virtual x86 machine emulator 'plex86' now works on a second Open Source operating system. So far plex86 did only support Linux as host platform, and thanks to Frank van der Linden of Wasabi Systems (http://www.wasabisystems.com/), it now also works on the i386 port of the NetBSD multi-platform operating system.

Tested operating systems include FreeDOS beta 4, MS-DOS 6.22, Red Hat 6 Linux and NetBSD 1.5, stay tuned for more to come. Instead of doing full CPU instruction emulation, Plex86 runs native i386 code at full CPU speed, and only intercepts the code for system calls into the host platform as well as instructions that modify the machine state like trap or IO operations. Simply speaking, it is an open source version VMWare.

Plex86 is currently still in early stages, so speed and device support are items that need improvement. However, they are being worked on by its creator, Kevin Lawton.

The changes for NetBSD have been sent to him, and will hopefully be integrated soon. To learn more about plex86, visit its homepage at:

Update: The changes for NetBSD have been integrated into plex86. See the news entry at their web site for more details.

12 Dec 2000 - Infrastructure to load emulations via LKM in NetBSD-current (top)

Jaromír Dolecek has added an infrastructure to the kernel for loading emulations and support for executing emulation binaries via LKM. This means that e.g. Linux or FreeBSD compat code is now dynamically loadable and the support for running respective binaries can be added in runtime.

The build infrastructure is there for all support emulations and compatibility exec formats under sys/lkm/{compat|exec}/*. It has only been tested for Linux/ELF emulation on i386 so far. Other LKMs are built, but not installed yet, since they haven't been tested.

If you find any other compat or exec LKMs working, please use send-pr(1) so that it gets enabled (or, if it's not working, so it can be fixed).

The full text of Jaromír's announcement is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

11 Dec 2000 - 802.11 power management frobbing with ifconfig (top)

Jason Thorpe has committed a 'powersave' command to ifconfig(8) so that you can manipulate power management parameters of 802.11 devices. This was something you could already do with wiconfig(8), but:

  1. ifconfig(8) is what /etc/rc uses, etc.
  2. It's specified by 802.11, so other cards may support it

Jason has modified the wi(4) driver to understand it. People with other card types will want to investigate support in their cards.

07 Dec 2000 - NetBSD/mvme68k switches to ELF (top)

Steven Woodford has switched NetBSD/mvme68k over to using ELF as its native object file format, and gas.new/ld.new as its assembler and linker respectively. NetBSD/mvme68k is NetBSD's port to Motorola's MVME-1xx range of single board computers.

Further details are available on the NetBSD/mvme68k port page, and in Steve's announcements in the port-mvme68k mail archive and the netbsd-announce mail archive.

06 Dec 2000 - NetBSD 1.5 Released (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to announce the release of NetBSD 1.5. For details, see the formal announcement. Update: French Language, German Language, Czech Language and Japanese Language translations of the NetBSD 1.5 formal announcement are available.

06 Dec 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in November 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in November 2000 is available in the tech-pkg mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

01 Dec 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome two new developers:


November 2000

30 Nov 2000 - Updated ncr53c9x driver (top)

Eduardo Horvath has added TAG QUEUE support to the ncr53c9x driver in NetBSD-current. See Eduardo's announcement in the current-users mail archive.

27 Nov 2000 - UBC code integrated into NetBSD-current (top)

Chuck Silvers has integrated the Unified Buffer Cache project code into NetBSD-current. To build a new -current kernel from an existing kernel configuration file, you'll want to remove any settings for "BUFCACHE", "NBUF", or "BUFPAGES", and let the size of the buffer cache go back to the default. After that, you'll need to rerun config, and then you can build away.

Under UBC, the traditional buffer cache is no longer used for storing regular data, only metadata, so you'll want to allow the VM system to manage most of your physical memory. The default buffer cache size will be fine for most people, regardless of the amount of memory in the machine.

What does this mean for you? For most people, more memory will be available for caching regular file data, so filesystem i/o will be faster since there will be more times when the data you're accessing is already in memory. How much faster depends on what you're doing, but you'll probably notice the difference.

More information is available in Chuck's announcement in the current-users mail archive.

25 Nov 2000 - NetBSD 1.4.3 Released (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to announce the release of NetBSD 1.4.3.

This release fixes problems found in the earlier 1.4.x family of releases, improves stability, and includes support for new hardware. NetBSD 1.4.3 is a patch release of the 1.4 release branch. The 1.5 release branch will have its major release, NetBSD 1.5, shortly.

The release binaries and source for NetBSD 1.4.3 are available now. The pc532 and atari ports will be available in source form only for 1.4.3, but both will have release binaries for 1.5.

This release contains a number of new features which have been imported from the main NetBSD development branch since NetBSD 1.4.2, including:

  • A driver for the Lucent Wavelan (Orinoco) 802.11B wireless Ethernet PCMCIA card has been added, see wi(4).
  • The PCI Cyclom-4Y and -8Y multiport serial cards are now supported.
  • The Macintosh LC Ethernet Adapter is now supported.
  • The on-board video on Macintosh Quadra 605 is now supported.
  • Bugfixes to the Alteon Gigabit Ethernet driver, ti(4).
  • Support for several new PCI IDE controllers have been added, see pciide(4).
  • The i386 port may now be installed on wd2 or wd3.
  • A possible CPU hog problem related to large I/Os has been fixed. Fixes SA#2000-005
  • A denial-of-service problem related to handling of IP options has been fixed. Fixes SA#2000-002.
  • A problem with /etc/ftpchroot has been fixed. Fixes SA#2000-006.
  • A minor problem related to locking of semaphore resources has been fixed. Fixes SA#2000-004.
  • The DHCP software has been updated to ISC 2.0pl3. This also fixes SA#2000-008—a security problem in the dhcp client code.
  • A problem with use of user-supplied data as a format string in ftpd has been fixed. Fixes SA#2000-009.
  • The sparc c++rt0.o code is now compiled with -fPIC. This means that libraries with global constructors (which must link in c++rt0.o on sparc/a.out) must also be compiled -fPIC.
  • Most countries can now import the full release without restriction, including the previously restricted 'domestic' portion. The only "problem spots" are US-embargoed countries. Full details are available at http://www.NetBSD.org/about/crypto-export.html
  • An extensive audit of the code (and corresponding fixes) has been done to eliminate possible buffer overruns caused by possible user-specified format strings.

In addition, many bugs have been fixed—more than 70 problems reported through our problem tracking system have been fixed, and NetBSD 1.4.3 also contains fixes for other non-reported problems that were found during the 1.4.3 release cycle.

A complete list of changes applied between NetBSD 1.4.2 and 1.4.3 can be found at:

Please see the INSTALL note for your architecture(s) for further information; including supported hardware, how to install, and any known caveats with this release.

The LAST_MINUTE file in the main release directory contains pointers to last minute changes which did not make the source cutoff date.

NetBSD 1.4.3 is available from mirror sites around the world, a list of which is available at http://www.NetBSD.org/mirrors/

NetBSD:              http://www.NetBSD.org/
1.4.x information:   http://www.NetBSD.org/releases/formal-1.4/
NetBSD-1.4.3:        ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/NetBSD-1.4.3/

23 Nov 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome three new developers:

21 Nov 2000 - Changes in struct emul and execsw[] (top)

Jaromír Dolecek has committed some changes to restructure struct emul and execsw in the NetBSD-current tree. These changes are part of an effort to make emulations loadable via LKM.

The changes are quite extensive, though should not cause any problems. More details are available in Jaromír's commit message in the source-changes mail archive and his announcement in the current-users mail archive.

17 Nov 2000 - Recent ftpd enhancements (top)

Luke Mewburn has been improving ftpd lately. What follows is a list of recent changes:

  • Add ftpd.conf(5) directives:
    • 'maxfilesize' - limit maximum size of upload files
    • 'sanenames' - only permit uploaded filenames that don't start with '.' and only contain '[-+,._A-Za-z0-9]'
  • New command line options:
    • '-P dataport' - different dataport
    • '-q' - enable pidfiles (default)
    • '-Q' - disable pidfiles
    • '-u' - write utmp
    • '-U' - don't write utmp (default)
    • '-w' - write wtmp (default)
    • '-W' - don't write wtmp

Note: -U meaning has changed from "write utmp" to "don't write utmp" to be consistent with -q/-Q and -w/-W. Old use of -U won't enable an unwanted feature, it just won't enable a wanted feature.

08 Nov 2000 - Support for I2O adapters in NetBSD-current (top)

Andrew Doran has added support for I2O adapters to NetBSD-current. Currently, SCSI/FC-AL and raw block devices are supported.

This support was made possible by the kind donation of a SmartRAID V Millennium by Distributed Processing Technology.

06 Nov 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in October 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in October 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

04 Nov 2000 - Watchdog timer support in NetBSD-current (top)

Jason Thorpe has committed a generic framework for hardware watchdog timers. The watchdog timer function in the PC-Weasel serial console board for PCs is currently supported. Jason will be adding support for the ICS PCI-WDT501 watchdog timer board shortly.

delphi:thorpej 136$ wdogctl 
Available watchdog timers:
        weasel, 12 second period [armed, kernel tickle]
delphi:thorpej 137$

See the wdogctl(8) manual page for more information.


October 2000

31 Oct 2000 - New Mozilla ports available (top)

Charles Hannum has ported Mozilla to the Alpha, ARM (32-bit), PowerPC, and SPARC CPU types (in addition to the existing i386 port). More ports are in progress right now.

Prebuilt packages are available from the NetBSD FTP server. See www/mozilla page under the NetBSD Packages Collection.

Please note:

  • a.out platforms require an upgrade to ld.so to run Mozilla.
  • There are some minor toolchain updates needed to build Mozilla on all platforms.

If you're running on an a.out platform or want to build Mozilla, and your system is built from sources before these changes, you can either:

  • Check out the relevant sources from anoncvs.
  • Wait for the next snapshot. Snapshots are announced on mailing lists for each port, in addition to the news section of each port page.

26 Oct 2000 - Four new security advisories (top)

NetBSD-SA2000-012, NetBSD-SA2000-013, NetBSD-SA2000-014, and NetBSD-SA2000-015 have been released, with fixes for two security issues in netbsd system libraries and notification of security issues for two packages.

23 Oct 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in September 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in September 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

23 Oct 2000 - RISC OS 2000 show report (top)

A group of NetBSD enthusiasts were one of the exhibitors at RISC OS 2000. They had CD's, leaflets, and a mixture of hardware running NetBSD on display. David Brownlee wrote up a report about the NetBSD stand at RISC OS 2000.

19 Oct 2000 - Support for 3ware RAID controllers (top)

Andrew Doran has committed support for the 3ware Escalade family of RAID controllers to NetBSD-current. The Escalade RAID controllers are IDE based, can handle between 2-8 drives (depending on the controller), and can do RAID0, RAID1, and RAID10.

17 Oct 2000 - New developer (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome a new developer:

  • James Chacon, , who will be working on general issues, in particular the build process.

11 Oct 2000 - Luke Mewburn has released lukemftp 1.5 (top)

A new release of lukemftp, a port of the enhanced NetBSD ftp client to other systems, is now available. lukemftp uses an autoconf configure script and replacement library for systems which don't have NetBSD-specific library functions.

The major changes with this version are the addition of commands to use the RFC 2389 and draft-ietf-ftpext-mlst-11 ftp extensions, and improved portability, especially in the IPv6 code.

The main ftp site for lukemftp is ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/misc/lukemftp/.

07 Oct 2000 - NetBSD and BSDCon 2000 (top)

This year, BSDCon will be held from October 14th to the 20th in Monterey, California. Tutorials will be from the 14th through the 17th, and the Conference will be from the 18th through the 20th. There are plenty of activities of interest (see the conference schedule portion of the BSDCon web site), and a couple of those spotlight NetBSD.

On October 19th, Charles Hannum will be giving a talk entitled "NetBSD: Platform for The Future". This will take place in the Regency Ballroom from 8:30 to 9:30 am.

On October 20th, Jun-ichiro itojun Hagino, a member of the NetBSD Core Group, will be giving a talk about NetBSD 1.5. This will take place in Regency I-III from 2:00 to 3:00 pm.

NetBSD will also be an exhibitor at BSDCon 2000. The Expo hours are from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm on October 18th, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on October 19th, and 9:00 am to 4:00 pm on October 20th. Stop by if you can.

Information on other exhibitors, talks, tutorials, and registration can be found on the BSDCon web site.

Update: Erik Berls and Luke Mewburn gave the "NetBSD: Platform for the Future" talk since Charles wasn't available. Slides from this talk are available at http://www.mewburn.net/luke/talks/bsdcon-2000/.

Also, a transcript of Jun-ichiro itojun Hagino's talk on NetBSD 1.5 is available at ftp://ftp.itojun.org/pub/paper/itojun-bsdcon2000-netbsd15.ps.gz.

04 Oct 2000 - AES (top)

NetBSD-current IPsec (from KAME) now supports rijndael algorithm for ESP encryption, thanks to the integration work of Jun-ichiro itojun Hagino. rijndael is the finalist of AES contest, and will be standardized in FIPS standard suite, to replace DES.

AES finalist was picked on Oct 2, the official algorithm number is decided on Oct 3. NetBSD-current has working rijndael support since Oct 3 (the foundation has been there waiting for algorithm number).

The implementation is known to be interoperable with others. Also, it is possible to negotiate rijndael IPsec SA by using the latest racoon IKE daemon (pkgsrc/security/racoon, be sure to get version 20001004a).

For more info see:

The change is now in 1.5 branch, and will be available in 1.5 release.


September 2000

28 Sep 2000 - Secure Shell now in mainline (top)

Jason Thorpe has committed an OpenSSH-based Secure Shell to the main NetBSD sources. This will be pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so it will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

Please note that the OpenSSH-based implementation is a temporary measure; it will be replaced with a completely independent implementation as soon as that other implementation is ready (within the next couple of months it is hoped).

28 Sep 2000 - 802.1Q VLAN support in NetBSD-current (top)

Andrew Doran has added 802.1Q VLAN trunking support in NetBSD-current. Enami Tsugutomo did work on multicast, and Jason Thorpe did work on some additional integration cleanup.

12 Sep 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in August 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in August 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

11 Sep 2000 - Change in kernel pty structures allocation (top)

Jaromír Dolecek has changed the way pty structs are allocated in NetBSD-current. It's now allocated at run-time, allowing support for an arbitrary number of ptys without the need of a kernel recompile.

The value was previously set in a kernel config via:

   pseudo-device pty        foo

This now does not mean that the fixed number foo is available, but rather how big is the array of pointers to pty structs on the start. If foo is omitted, 64 is used. This initial array is enlarged as necessary.

Also, there's a new sysctl, kern.maxptys, which limits how many maximum pty's might exist. This defaults to 512. Note that one would need to install newer kernel includes and rebuild sysctl(8) for it to support kern.maxptys.

The full text of Jaromír's announcement is available in the current-users mail archive.

10 Sep 2000 - List of NetBSD code changes now available in XML/RSS format (top)

The NetBSD Project is proud to offer another News Channel for content providers and users. The new channel, 'NetBSD Code Changes', will list significant source changes (such as newly added features in both kernel and userland), updated programs in the base system, ports to new architectures, and more.

The 'NetBSD Code Changes' RSS file is available at the following URL:

More information on this, and the other two channels, is available on the NetBSD News Channels page.

07 Sep 2000 - Initial support for large pages (top)

Jason Thorpe has added support for mapping the kernel text using large pages to NetBSD-current/i386. This gives a reasonable performance improvement. For example, building a GENERIC kernel on a 600MHz P-III laptop:

before: 636.59s real 387.34s user 27.53s system

after: 597.21s real 382.88s user 24.88s system

Note that compiling stuff is userland-intensive, so things that spend a lot more time in the kernel (e.g forwarding packets, IPsec processing, RAIDframe, etc.) are likely to see better improvements.

This is initial support for large pages, so there is not generic support for using large pages for other types of mappings yet, nor is there support for mapping the kernel data/bss segments with large pages (although that should be pretty straightforward).

An example kernel config can be found in sys/arch/i386/conf/DR-EVIL.4MB. Follow its lead to learn how to enable large page support.

This initial support was developed at and contributed by Zembu Labs, Inc.

06 Sep 2000 - Port for MIPS Computer Systems Inc. family of workstations and servers (top)

In July, Wayne Knowles , a researcher in New Zealand, successfully ported NetBSD to his RC3230 made by MIPS Computer Systems, Inc. The RC3230 was a R3000A desktop box commonly called R3000 Magnum; a popular workstation that was re-badged by companies such as Bull and Olivetti. The port name was decided to be NetBSD/mipsco so other computers by MIPS Computer Systems could be included in it.

In early August, NetBSD/mipsco was merged into the main NetBSD tree, and has seen many improvements since. Changes were committed to allow the kernel to read either a BSD disklabel created under NetBSD/sparc or a MIPS volume header created under Risc OS. This change allowed the stand alone shell to directly load a NetBSD kernel and mount a filesystem - NetBSD/mipsco became self-sufficient.

Currently the Magnum 3000, Mips 3230 Server, and Bull DPX/Prostation M-20 are supported. Support for other models is planned for the future.

The following persons helped greatly in the process of creating this port:

  • Wayne Knowles: port maintainer and main developer
  • Toru Nishimura: developer
  • Francis Bogsanyi and Chris Collins: provided feedback from the pre-alpha snapshot

If you're interested in following or becoming a part of the development efforts, there's a port-mipsco mailing list. This list can be subscribed to either on the NetBSD web site or by sending a mail with the body of "subscribe port-mipsco" to majordomo@NetBSD.org. More information is also available on the NetBSD/mipsco port page.

06 Sep 2000 - Support for MVME162-LX 200/300 in NetBSD/mvme68k (top)

Steve Woodford has added preliminary support for the LX 200/300 variants of MVME162 to NetBSD/mvme68k.

Currently, the major onboard devices are supported (disk, network, rs232 and VMEbus). However, work is still need to support the remaining devices (e.g IndustryPack sites).

These boards are available with a dazzling array of build options. At this time, the following options are required:

  • Real floating point hardware (the 68LC040 model isn't tested).
  • The VMEchip2 must be present.
  • If offboard VMEbus RAM is not present, at least 8MB of onboard RAM is required.
  • Even if offboard VMEbus RAM is present, at least 4MB of onboard RAM is required (Boards with 1 or 2MB onboard RAM can be supported with offboard RAM, but not without some funky values in the VMEbus Master mapping registers).

Salient Systems provided hardware to Steve which made this support possible.

More information about NetBSD/mvme68k is available in the NetBSD/mvme68k pages.

Update: This support has been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so it will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

02 Sep 2000 - Embedded PowerPC Port started (top)

A port to the Motorola MPC8xx series of embedded PowerPC devices has begun. This series of devices includes several dozen variants with many different on-chip peripherals, notably high-speed communications ports offering just about every known protocol, including 10/100 Ethernet. These chips have become quite popular in the telecom industry.

The port is being performed by David Querbach, and is sponsored by Real-Time Systems Inc., an industrial embedded controller design house.


August 2000

20 Aug 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome three new developers:

  • IWAMOTO Toshihiro, , who will be working on various bug fixes.
  • Takahiro Kambe, , who will be working on various bug fixes, as well as helping with htdocs and pkgsrc.
  • SUNAGAWA Keiki, , who will be working on support for PowerPC 601 and ADB of iBook. Also, he will be helping out with pkgsrc for powerpc and the Japanese category.

19 Aug 2000 - UPDATING file for those tracking -current (top)

There is now an UPDATING file in the root of the source tree on the main branch. This file is intended to become a reference for those tracking -current; changes that break 'make build' from an earlier version of the tree will be appended to it.

11 Aug 2000 - Support for DEC DE422 Ethernet (top)

Jason Thorpe has added support to NetBSD-current for DEC DE422 Ethernet, which is a DEPCA attached to the EISA bus. This board is commonly found on Alpha Jensen systems. This has been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so it will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

More information about NetBSD/alpha is available in the NetBSD/alpha pages.

10 Aug 2000 - New IP Filter 3.4.9 imported (top)

Bernd Ernesti has imported IP Filter 3.4.9 into NetBSD-current. A complete list of changes is available in Bernd's announcement in the current-users mail archive.

Update: This has been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so it will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

08 Aug 2000 - Security advisory for Netscape browsers (top)

A security problem with JPEG parsing in Netscape browsers has been discovered; you should upgrade Netscape Navigator/Communicator to at least version 4.75.

04 Aug 2000 - Speed improvements for crypto library (top)

Jason Thorpe has added support for using the x86 assembly versions of Blowfish, MD5, RMD160, and some of the BIGNUM routines (used by DSA and RSA). These improve performance of these algorithms significantly.

These changes will be pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so that these improvements will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

See also:

04 Aug 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in July 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in July 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES available on the Recent packages changes page.

03 Aug 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome two new developers:

  • Erik Reid, , who will be doing sysadmin work in the NetBSD build lab.
  • Wayne Knowles, , who will be integrating and working on his Mips Co. Rc3230 port.


July 2000

30 Jul 2000 - NIS change for non-IPv4 hostname lookup (top)

Jun-ichiro itojun Hagino made some changes into NIS server/client code to support non-IPv4 hostname lookup (IPv6 only at this moment). The code obeys practice in Solaris 8, and believed to be compatible with them. We have a new NIS map ipnodes.{byname,byaddr} for non-IPv4 hostname lookup. hosts.{byname,byaddr} NIS map is IPv4 only just like before. The code is available in netbsd-current tree.

28 Jul 2000 - Recent ftpd enhancements (top)

Luke Mewburn has been improving ftpd lately. What follows is a list of recent changes:

  • Add ftpd.conf(5) directives:
    • 'chroot' (specify directory to chroot(2) to on login)
    • 'homedir' (specify homedir of users)
  • Add security enhancements:
    • Make checkportcmd the default
    • Add -r (explicitly drop root privs)
    • Add -V vers (change version string to vers)
    • Drop root privs if a chroot or guest user and ftpd is running on a non reserved port.

These changes have been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so they will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

26 Jul 2000 - Experimental sparc64 shared library snapshot (top)

Charles Hannum has uploaded an experimental NetBSD/sparc64 snapshot with shared libraries. This is just a big tar file of the whole installation, with a kernel in /netbsd. The snapshot is located at ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/incoming/mycroft/sparc64.tgz.

A few things to note:

  • This snapshot was cross-compiled from i386-netbsdelf. The compiler it contains is egcs 1.1.2, which is not recommended for sparc64. There should be a native gcc 2.95.2 build working soon.
  • The snapshot does not contain hack(6), because it fails to build due to a cross-compiler bug.
  • There appear to be problems with tcpdump and krb5. They'll be looked into soon.
  • It is, as stated, experimental. As so, there's a chance it will break.

If you do try it, please report any problems you have to the port-sparc64 mailing list.

Also, see the NetBSD/sparc64 pages for more information on NetBSD/sparc64.

23 Jul 2000 - NetBSD-current now using sendmail 8.11.0 (top)

Jun-ichiro itojun Hagino has upgraded sendmail to 8.11.0 in NetBSD-current. This new version includes many new features and bug fixes. Bugfix includes IPv6 support fix (old cf file choked with IPv6-enabled 8.10.x - NetBSD tree was locally fixed).

Update: This has been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so it will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

21 Jul 2000 - Support for nwkey added to ifconfig for 802.11 (top)

Atsushi Onoe has committed changes to NetBSD-current for nwkey keyword support in ifconfig(8) for IEEE 802.11 devices. The available drivers are wi (WaveLAN and PRISM-II), and awi (AMD/PRISM-I), for now.

Here is the usage from the updated man page:

nwkey key     (IEEE 802.11 devices only) Enable WEP encryption for IEEE 802.11-based wireless network interfaces with the key. The key can either be a string, a series of hexadecimal digits, or a set of keys in the form n:k1,k2,k3,k4, where n specifies which of keys will be used for all transmitted packets, and four keys, k1 through k4, are configured as WEP keys. Note that the order must be match within same network if multiple keys are used.
-nwkey        (IEEE 802.11 devices only) Disable WEP encryption for IEEE 802.11-based wireless network interfaces.

These changes have been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch, so this will be available in NetBSD 1.5.

15 Jul 2000 - Progress on port to Sega's Dreamcast game console (top)

The port of the NetBSD operating system to Sega's Dreamcast game console is reaching a state where it's near to single user mode. Utilizing the NetBSD/evbsh3 port's simple structure and the fact that it supports both big and little endian architectures as well as the general clean design of the NetBSD operating system helped for this port. Device drivers for the game pad, keyboard etc. are next on the todo-list of Saitoh Masanobu, who works on this port.

NetBSD 1.5_ALPHA (DREAMCAST) #8: Fri Jul 14 01:42:14 JST 2000
    msaitoh@vslock.xxx.yyy:/var/sources/src/sys/arch/evbsh3/compile/DREAMCAST
total memory = 16384 KB
avail memory = 12988 KB
using 230 buffers containing 920 KB of memory
mainbus0 (root)
shb0 at mainbus0
scif0 at shb0 port 0xffe80000-0xffe8000f irq 12
scif0: console
biomask c0000000 netmask c0000000 ttymask e0000000
md0: internal 1440K image area
rn_init: radix functions require max_keylen be set
boot device: <unknown>
root on md0a dumps on md0b
cannot mount root, error = 22
root device (default md0a):

14 Jul 2000 - Support for Jensen systems in NetBSD/alpha (top)

Jason Thorpe has gotten the Jensen systems (DECpc AXP 150 a.k.a DEC 2000/300) working, thanks to some testing help from Gyenes Istvan. There was a kernel configuration error in the INSTALL kernel that prevented Jensen SCSI from working, but that has since been fixed and the code has been committed.

This support has been pulled into the netbsd-1-5 branch so that NetBSD 1.5 will work on Jensen systems. For more details (including console output of the most recent test kernel) please see Jason's announcement in the port-alpha mail archive.

Also, see the NetBSD/alpha pages for more information about NetBSD/alpha.

10 Jul 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome two new developers:

  • Ichiro Fukuhara, , who has already been doing things with the Japan NetBSD Users Group, including NetBSD-on-sh3/hpcmips. He will continue his previous work, as well as helping with pkgsrc and htdocs.
  • Jeff Smith, , who brings a wealth of experience with the MIPS architecture gained on the development of a number of platforms at the company formerly known as Silicon Graphics. Jeff's expertise with the MIPS architecture and the caching issues involved has already helped get the NetBSD/cobalt port off the ground. He will continue enhancing the MIPS platforms by integrating changes focusing on performance, reliability, and serviceability issues.

10 Jul 2000 - Security advisories for dhcp, ftpd, and wu-ftpd (top)

Three new security advisories have been released, concerning fixes to vulnerabilities which have the potential to allow root access to attackers over the network.

  1. NetBSD-SA2000-008: The ISC DHCP client is vulnerable to rogue DHCP servers
  2. NetBSD-SA2000-009: The NetBSD ftp server is vulnerable to a possible remote root compromise.
  3. NetBSD-SA2000-010: The wu-ftpd package is also vulnerable to a possible remote root compromise.

10 Jul 2000 - NetBSD Developer Resources page (top)

NetBSD has a specific build lab for 'full' developers, but it can sometimes be difficult for others who would like to test and develop software on the wide range of machines supported by NetBSD to do so.

In response to this, Rick Kelly, , has created the NetBSD Developer Resources page, which lists NetBSD users who will donate time on their machines to increase awareness of NetBSD and widen the pool of available software for the OS. The entries on the page consist of the users name, e-mail address, and a listing of computer models available to developers.

Thanks should go to both Rick Kelly and all those who have offered shell/login accounts on their systems.

09 Jul 2000 - Luke Mewburn has released lukemftp 1.4 (top)

A new release of lukemftp, a port of the enhanced NetBSD ftp client to other systems, is now available. lukemftp uses an autoconf configure script and replacement library for systems which don't have NetBSD-specific library functions.

The major changes with this version are various fixes to the IPv6 support, the use of 'LIST' instead of 'NLST' with the ls command, support for uploading files on the command line with '-u', the addition of fget (which reads a list of files to retrieve from a given file), and portability fixes.

The main ftp site for lukemftp is ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/misc/lukemftp/.

07 Jul 2000 - LinuxTag 2000 summary (top)

A group of *BSD enthusiasts organized a *BSD booth at LinuxTag 2000, which, among many other things, included a variety of boxes showcasing NetBSD. Christian Weisgerber has written a summary about his experiences at LinuxTag 2000, as one both manning the *BSD booth and giving a talk.

04 Jul 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in June 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in June 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES available on the Recent packages changes page.


June 2000

30 Jun 2000 - Support for NetBSD from Wasabi Systems, Inc. (top)

Wasabi Systems is a new company, founded by members of the NetBSD Project and a team of experienced consultants and business services providers, that will offer commercial-grade NetBSD sales, support, and service.

There has been a lot of talk and excitement since Wasabi commenced operations on June 21st, and what follows is a brief outline of their goals and what they're doing.

Perry Metzger, President and CEO of Wasabi, said, "Support is the key. You can't go NetBSD if going NetBSD means going it alone. And yet until now, no company has stood behind NetBSD and offered complete NetBSD customizations, support packages, and commercial-grade consulting solutions. Wasabi will bring the highest-caliber NetBSD developers and consultants to every job we do, from mailservers to MIPS boxes, firewalls to food processors."

Wasabi Systems is the premier source for commercial NetBSD support and customization services, and offers a range of integrated NetBSD system solutions, focusing on the Internet server appliance and embedded systems markets.

Wasabi will also offer NetBSD support packages, training and certification programs, and related NetBSD products. In the summer of 2000, Wasabi plans to release a limited edition of NetBSD 1.4.3 CD-ROMs, which will be followed by the full release of Wasabi NetBSD 1.5 in the fall.

More information is available at the Wasabi Systems web site at www.wasabisystems.com.

See also:

30 Jun 2000 - NetBSD Port available for SGI Platform (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to announce that the NetBSD/sgimips port has reached a state where it is stable enough to run multi-user mode. This makes NetBSD the world's first Open Source operating system running on the Silicon Graphics O2, code for the Indy machines will be available soon. Utilizing NetBSD's machine independent driver framework, the port currently supports most of the usual NetBSD PCI drivers, including the machine's internal SCSI controller. Machines with the R5000 CPU are known to work, R10k and R12k are untested due to lack of hardware (contact for arranging hardware donations).

The following persons made this port possible:

  • Soren Jorvang: port maintainer and main developer
  • Antti Kantee, Helsinki University of Technology: providing access to O2 hardware
  • Herb Peyerl, the NetBSD Build Lab: providing access to O2 hardware
  • Chan Wilson, Silicon Graphics, Inc.: Indy hardware donation

If you have questions or want to participate in development of the NetBSD/sgimips port, feel free to join our mailing list: write mail with "subscribe sgimips" in the body to majordomo@NetBSD.org, and send back the authentication mail you'll get. An archive of the mailing list can be found at http://mail-index.NetBSD.org/port-sgimips/.

See the NetBSD/sgimips homepage for more information.

27 Jun 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in May 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in May 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

26 Jun 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome two new developers:

  • Shuichiro URATA, , who has already contributed kernel softfloat emulation code to the hpcmips port and support for the NEC RISCstation 2250 and its PCI for the arc port. He will be working on improving various aspects of NetBSD's arc and other mips ports.
  • Takuya Shiozaki, , who is the main programmer of the Citrus Project, which is an effort to implement the internationalization framework (a.k.a. locale) for *BSD. He will be working on integrating this framework with NetBSD.

21 Jun 2000 - Security Advisory 2000-007 released (top)

NetBSD-SA2000-007 has been released, reporting a problem with random key generation in libdes in the domestic version of NetBSD-current if /dev/urandom is not in use. The problem has been corrected in -current and was not present in any formal release of NetBSD.

More information on previous security advisories is available in the NetBSD security pages.

20 Jun 2000 - NetBSD 1.5 release cycle started (top)

Today, the release cycle for NetBSD 1.5 has started. The NetBSD 1.5 release is scheduled for early fall this year. Of course, we want this to be the best NetBSD release ever, as with every release. To help achieve this goal, you can test the ALPHA and BETA snapshots that will be made available, or track the release branch sources.

If you want to use the NetBSD 1.5 branch source code using anoncvs, update your source tree using the "-r netbsd-1-5" flag to the cvs "update" command, or check out a separate tree using this flag to the "checkout" command. To be sure that you get the 1.5 branch, you should always use the "-r netbsd-1-5" flag.

For people tracking -current using SUP: the -current sources on the NetBSD ftp and SUP servers will track the 1.5 release branch during the release cycle, so no extra action is required to get the 1.5 branch sources.

17 Jun 2000 - Soft updates mount change (top)

Frank van der Linden has changed the way that soft updates are enabled and disabled. This is now done via a mount option (-o softdep). It can no longer be done via tunefs, after you have recompiled it.

If you are using soft updates, and want to upgrade your kernel, you should:

  1. Compile and run a new kernel with "options SOFTDEP" in its config file.
  2. Update mount(8) and mount_ffs(8)
  3. Boot your new kernel single user
  4. Use the old tunefs to disable soft updates on any filesystem you may have set it: "tunefs -n disable /dev/rXdoX".
  5. Continue booting
  6. Enable the softdep option in /etc/fstab for the filesystems that you want it to be active on.
  7. Reboot again

Full instructions on how to enable soft updates are located in the How to use soft updates FAQ entry.

13 Jun 2000 - Important RPC bugfix (top)

Jason Thorpe has fixed a serious problem with the new TI-RPC code. His fix makes the RPC mem_alloc() macro use calloc() to prevent RPC from using only partially-initiated data structures. If you've attempted to upgrade to the new RPC code, you should update your sources as soon as you can, rebuild your libc, and then rebuild world.

See also:

12 Jun 2000 - Support for the HighPoint HPT366 IDE Controller (top)

Manuel Bouyer has committed support to NetBSD-current for the HighPoint HPT366 IDE Controller. It should work properly with both standard and Ultra/66 cables. Support for the HPT370 was also added, but is untested as of this moment. If you have any problems please report them with send-pr(1).

05 Jun 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome three new developers:

  • Adam Ciarcinski, who will be working on the AmigaPPC port.
  • Andreas Gustafsson, who will be working on various bits, including pcmcia, wireless, pthreads, and general hacking both in and out of the kernel.
  • Federico Lupi, who has already written a large amount of documentation (in the form of the NetBSD Guide), and will be working on integrating it with NetBSD's current documentation and expanding it to cover even more subjects.

03 Jun 2000 - New RPC code added to the tree (top)

Frank van der Linden has modified NetBSD's RPC code (the library code, rpcinfo and rpcbind) to be based on the "TI-RPC" interface, Sun's second-generation RPC code.

Not all applications have been adapted to the new interface yet, but they will continue to work because the old interface is still there for backward compatibility.

Further details (including instructions on how to upgrade) are available in Frank's announcement in the current-users mail archive. Update: On June 4th, Jason Thorpe fixed a serious bug with the new RPC code that prevented programs from reliably communicating with rpcbind(8); an uninitialized variable kept a necessary socket option from being enabled. If you've updated after the point when the new TI-RPC code went into the tree and before Jason's fix, you really want to update your libc as soon as you can.

03 Jun 2000 - Recent sysctls added (top)

Simon Burge has added some new sysctls to help abolish the dreaded "proc size mismatch" errors from ps(1) and some other kernel grovellers, and also to return some data that has previously only been accessible with /dev/kmem read access. The sysctls are:

  • KERN_PROC2 - return an array of fixed sized "struct kinfo_proc2" structures that contain most of the useful user-level data in "struct proc" and "struct user". The sysctl also takes the size of each element, so that if "struct kinfo_proc2" grows over time old binaries will still be able to request a fixed size amount of data.
  • KERN_PROC_ARGS - return the argv or envv for a particular process id. envv will only be returned if the process has the same user id as the requester or if the requester is root.
  • KERN_FSCALE - return the current kernel fixpt scale factor.
  • KERN_CCPU - return the scheduler exponential decay value.
  • KERN_CP_TIME - return cpu time state counters.

With input and suggestions from many people on tech-kern.

02 Jun 2000 - Support for Alpha Processor, Inc. UP1000 (top)

Jason Thorpe has added support for the Alpha Processor, Inc. UP1000 system. The UP1000 is a PC-like board with an EV6 and the AMD 751 core logic chipset (same as is used on AMD Athlon systems). SRM console software is available for it.

Many thanks to Alpha Processor, Inc. for supplying a board with which to do the port.

See the NetBSD/alpha pages for more information about NetBSD/alpha.


May 2000

28 May 2000 - Four new security advisories (top)

NetBSD-SA2000-003, NetBSD-SA2000-004, NetBSD-SA2000-005, and NetBSD-SA2000-006 have been released. Each concerns vulnerabilities involving authorized but untrusted users.

  • 2000-003 concerns a vulnerability in the xlockmore package.
  • 2000-004 concerns a problem with System V semaphores.
  • 2000-005 involves a cpu-hogging problem.
  • 2000-006 concerns a bug in NetBSD 1.4.2 ftpd.

More information on current security advisories is available on the NetBSD security pages.

26 May 2000 - Initial NetBSD/amigappc code (top)

The first mostly-demo kernel of NetBSD/Amigappc can now be built from the -current sources, using the compiler and tools from the cross-powerpc package. This is work by Adam Ciarcinski with some help from Ignatios Souvatzis and valuable input from other NetBSD/powerpc ports.

23 May 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome two new developers:

  • Gregory McGarry, , who has already contributed audio device drivers, MCA device drivers, and PCMCIA code, and will be continuing work on miscellaneous drivers.
  • Bernardo Innocenti, , who has already enhanced the Amiga mainboard-audio driver, and will initially be working on integrating sysinst support for NetBSD/Amiga.

18 May 2000 - Driver for Cyclades-Z intelligent multiport serial adapters (top)

Jason Thorpe has committed a driver for the Cyclades-Z intelligent multiport serial adapters. These come in two basic flavors:

  • Cyclades-8Zo - 8 port board with an octopus cable.
  • Cyclades-Ze - expandable model. HD-50 SCSI cable connects board to expansion boxes, each with 16 RJ45 serial ports.

The Cyclades-Z is based on an MIPS R3000 which runs firmware provided by the driver. The firmware handles all flow control, etc. It also has optimizations for PPP (though the driver doesn't implement that yet). The driver defaults to running in polled mode, polling the board every 20ms for input. This is apparently the preferred method of running these boards, which is fine, since the board has a very large (4Kbyte) input buffer for each channel.

Bill Studenmund and Jason Thorpe wrote the driver. The development was sponsored by Zembu Labs, Inc.

17 May 2000 - Writing a pseudo device documented (top)

The NetBSD web pages now have a document detailing how to write a pseudo-device driver. This document includes sample code for a pseudo-device driver that can be used as a framework on which to base a working driver. The sample code is functional in that it can be incorporated into the NetBSD kernel source by following the documented steps and booting the resulting kernel to test the sample pseudo-device. This document covers only the i386 architecture. If anyone has any comments then please mail Brett Lymn.

17 May 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in April 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in April 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

11 May 2000 - Driver for video capture and TV tuner cards (top)

NetBSD-current now includes the bktr driver, supporting video capture (frame grabber) and TV tuner cards based on the Brooktree Bt848, Bt848A, Bt849A, Bt878 and Bt879 chips.

Supported hardware includes most cards by AVerMedia, Hauppauge, Leadtek, Miro, Pinnacle, Pixelview, and Terratec. Other hardware may also be supported, particularly if it is based on the Brooktree Bt848, Bt848A, Bt849A, Bt878, or Bt879. (ATI All-in-Wonder cards are a notable exception.)

The bktr driver was originally written by Amancio Hasty for FreeBSD and is now maintained by Roger Hardiman. Bernd Ernesti, Berndt Josef Wulf, Matthias Scheler, and Thomas Klausner ported the driver to NetBSD. The driver supports device access through bus_space, and can thus be used on all PCI-platforms, such as i386, alpha, cobalt, bebox, and macppc, though at the moment it has only been tested on i386.

Use fxtv to watch TV, or xmradio to listen to radio.

09 May 2000 - NetBSD/arm26 port committed (top)

Ben Harris has committed the new arm26 port, covering Acorn ARM2 and ARM3 based systems (the Archimedes series and its successors).

08 May 2000 - Driver for VIA VT82C686A hardware monitoring (top)

Johan Danielsson has committed a driver, viaenv(4), for the hardware monitoring device of the VIA VT82C686A southbridge chip found on some motherboards.

07 May 2000 - Security Advisory for IP Options Remote DoS (top)

NetBSD-SA2000-002 has been released, and deals with several problems in the processing of IP options. Vulnerable systems can be crashed remotely by malformed IP packets. The vulnerability applies to NetBSD releases 1.4.2 and earlier, as well as to NetBSD-current prior to 2000-05-06, on all architectures.

More information on previous security advisories is available in the NetBSD security pages.

05 May 2000 - New IP Filter version (top)

IP Filter 3.4.1 is now in NetBSD-current. Remember to install a new kernel before you update the programs. If you have any problems please send a bug report using send-pr(1).

03 May 2000 - NetBSD-current now using sendmail 8.10.1 (top)

sendmail 8.10.1 has been imported into the NetBSD-current source code tree. The upgrade included a configuration file pathname change, from /etc/sendmail.* to /etc/mail/sendmail.*. Take caution when you upgrade your mail servers.

03 May 2000 - NetBSD-current now using ntp4 (top)

Simon Burge has cut everything over to use ntp4; all traces of xntp3 should now be gone from the build tree. Your old ntp.conf configuration file should still work. However, there are new features (such as multicast support) that you may want to investigate. There are some rough-around-the-edges man pages supplied, and the full HTML documentation supplied with ntp4 is installed in /usr/share/doc/html/ntp. For more details please see Simon's message in the current-users mail archive.

03 May 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome three new developers:

02 May 2000 - Experimental MCA support snapshot available (top)

This snapshot, made by Jaromir Dolecek, is a patchset to bring Micro Channel Architecture support into NetBSD-current. It's based upon Scott Telford's and McGarry's MCA code.

Almost no devices are supported in the snapshot - the only provided drivers (besides ISA lpt, com, vga and floppy) are for IBM Tropic Token-Ring adapters and AHA-1650. Most notably, an ESDI driver is not present at the moment.

The download locations are (floppy subdirectory contains a boot floppy with an older kernel):

It's possible to replace the kernel on the provided floppy image with a newer one (kernel configuration file is attached to the patchset). See the README and dev/mca/TODO for drawbacks and current limitations.


April 2000

24 Apr 2000 - Support for zero'ing pages in idle loop (top)

Jason R Thorpe has just committed code that implements pre-zero'ing of pages in the idle loop. This helps zero-fill page faults a fair bit, and also speeds up e.g. page table allocation. Further details can be obtained in the current-users mail archive.

16 Apr 2000 - NetBSD/arm26 experimental snapshot (top)

A new experimental NetBSD/arm26 snapshot is available. The snapshot consists of a kernel and bootloader for NetBSD/arm26 as of 2000-04-15. They are by no means fully functional, but the system gets up as far as running user processes. Notable changes from the last version are:

  • root on et (Ether1) devices now works
  • rasops1 and rasops2 are compiled in, but don't work properly (boot in mode 0 and see!)
  • There's detection (but not use) of IOEBs and Unix Backplanes
  • pre-emptive multi-tasking works, and init tests it

If you want to test this, further instructions are available at the download locations:

16 Apr 2000 - Driver for serial devices on cardbus cards (top)

Johan Danielsson has committed a driver for serial devices on cardbus cards. If you have a card that might work with this (the most common case would be an ethernet + modem cardbus card), please try it out.

14 Apr 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in March 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in March 2000 is available in the current-users mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

04 Apr 2000 - New USB mass storage driver (top)

Lennart Augustsson has ported a new umass(4) driver from FreeBSD. It is more stable and now supports ATAPI devices as well as SCSI devices.

02 Apr 2000 - Driver for VIA VT82C686A integrated audio (top)

Ty Sarna has committed a driver, auvia(4), for the integrated audio of the VIA VT82C686A southbridge chip found on some motherboards.


March 2000

31 Mar 2000 - USB driver for Handspring Visor (top)

Lennart Augustsson has committed a USB driver to NetBSD-current for the Handspring Visor. It needs testing, so any feedback is appreciated. More details are available in uvisor(4).

31 Mar 2000 - Cobalt Networks Qube and RaQ port added (top)

A port for the Cobalt Networks Qube and RaQ Microservers has been added. See the port-cobalt page for further information.

29 Mar 2000 - Support for USB isochronous mode for OHCI (top)

Lennart Augustsson has added support for isoc mode on OHCI USB controllers. This means that the uaudio driver should work on these now.

23 Mar 2000 - New callout code committed (top)

Jason Thorpe has committed new callout code to the NetBSD kernel. The new API, described in callout(9), completely replaces the old timeout()/untimeout() API. The new subsystem has two major improvements:

  • Clients provide storage for the callout data structures, thus eliminating problems due to resource shortages.
  • Insertion and removal of a callout is constant time.

The changes to convert code to the new API were basically mechanical and no problems are expected. If you do encounter any problems please send a bug report with send-pr(1) immediately.

22 Mar 2000 - Support for 802.11 DS cards in awi driver (top)

Atsushi Onoe has updated the awi driver, which now supports 802.11 DS cards in addition to 802.11 FH cards. The cards tested thus far are:

  • 802.11 FH 1Mbps
    • BayStack 650
    • Netwave AirSurfer Plus
  • 802.11 DS 2Mbps
    • BayStack 660
    • Icom SL-200
    • Melco WLI-PCM
    • NEL SSMagic
    • Netwave AirSurfer Pro

More details and instructions can be found in Atsushi's message in the current-users mail archive.

21 Mar 2000 - Compaq array controller support (top)

Andrew Doran has recently committed a driver for Compaq array controllers to NetBSD-current. cac(4) handles the controller and ca(4) handles the arrays. If you have the hardware and would like to try this driver out, there are a couple things you should know:

  • This driver has only been tested out with a Smart Array 221, but should also work on the following boards: SMART-2/E, SMART-2/P, SMART-2SL, Smart Array 3100, Smart Array 3100ES, Integrated Array, Smart Array 4200, and Smart Array 4200ES.
  • It isn't enabled on anything other than i386. This is temporary.
  • It doesn't support anything other than PCI boards right now. If the hardware is out there and there's sufficient interest, Andrew will probably work on it.
  • If anybody has the kit and could try this driver sooner rather than later, it would be appreciated. Access to this hardware is lost to the developer near the end of March.

Until there's a snapshot supporting this hardware, you'll find install floppy images and a GENERIC kernel at ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/arch/i386/cac-test/.

21 Mar 2000 - NetBSD 1.4.2 Released (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to announce the release of NetBSD 1.4.2.

This release fixes problems found in the earlier 1.4.x family of releases, including some security issues. We urge users to upgrade their systems. NetBSD 1.4.2 includes important changes on many architectures.

The release binaries and source are available now, and can be found on mirror sites across the world. Please use a mirror close to you. A gzipped patch is available, containing all of the changes to the main system sources since 1.4.1 (just 'src'; not including X or package source changes).

NetBSD 1.4.2 contains a number of new features, which have been imported from the main NetBSD development branch since NetBSD 1.4.1 was released, including:

  • IPfilter upgrade to version 3.3.6
  • XFree upgrade to XFree86 version 3.3.6
  • update of BIND to 8.2.2-P5
  • driver added for Alteon Gigabit Ethernet cards
  • driver added for Realtek 100Mbit/s Ethernet cards
  • driver added for VIA Rhine Fast PCI Ethernet cards
  • driver added for DPT SmartCache/SmartRAID III or IV SCSI adapters
  • driver added for BOCA 6-port ISA serial cards
  • support for X-surf board on Amiga
  • support for ext2fs revision 1 (with read-only support for 'sparse_super' and 'filetype' options)
  • SysV compatible user management utilities (useradd, ...)
  • mktemp(1) added (primarily for use in shell scripts)
  • tcpdump now can do hex/ascii dumps
  • errno is now always a macro, to ease the integration of thread libraries with both system and third-party libraries

Additionally, more than 120 formally reported problems have been fixed since NetBSD 1.4.1, and NetBSD 1.4.2 also contains fixes for a lot of non-reported problems discovered by developers and others during the NetBSD 1.4.2 release cycle.

A full list of all the changes applied between NetBSD 1.4.1 and NetBSD 1.4.2 can be found in

Please see the INSTALL note for your architecture(s) for further information, especially for the known caveats with this release.

Please also note that the LAST_MINUTE file in the main release directory contains pointers to last minute changes which did not make the source cutoff date.

More information: http://www.NetBSD.org/releases/formal-1.4/
NetBSD-1.4.2: ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/NetBSD-1.4.2/
NetBSD mirror list: http://www.NetBSD.org/mirrors/

19 Mar 2000 - Netpliance i-opener booted with NetBSD (top)

Andrew Gillham has booted NetBSD/i386 -current on his Netpliance i-opener. He did this without opening the case and without using a 2.5" IDE hard drive. The steps involved (using a normal keyboard) are:

  1. Get to a root shell, via 'ESC 4' and fast typing.
  2. Bring up PPP to a NetBSD machine. Having a PBX helps.
  3. Backup the 16MB of flash, with the following:
            # cat /dev/hd0 | gzip -9 > hd0.gz
            # ftp <your server>
            ftp> put hd0.gz
  4. Replace flash with NetBSD image, by ftping compressed file.
            # gzip -d -c file_name.gz | cat > /dev/hd0
  5. Wait a few seconds, yank the power to prevent QNX updating flash.
  6. Reboot under NetBSD, enjoy.

17 Mar 2000 - New ahc driver (top)

Frank van der Linden has checked in a new version of the ahc driver (Adaptec SCSI), based on the FreeBSD driver by Justin Gibbs.

This driver provides support for the newer Adaptec cards, most notably 789x-based ones. The option that the old driver had to enable tagged queueing (AHC_TAGENABLE) is not there yet. This option has not been enabled yet to avoid possible problems it might add. At this point, without it, the driver should be quite stable.

16 Mar 2000 - See NetBSD in Action (top)

Some people tend to ask "What does Unix/BSD/NetBSD look like?". Now there's a web page in our gallery dedicated to showing them applications and machines running NetBSD.

09 Mar 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in February 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in February 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

02 Mar 2000 - Jason Thorpe new NetBSD/alpha co-portmaster (top)

Please welcome Jason Thorpe to the port-alpha-maintainer position. Jason has been using NetBSD since 1993 and has been involved in way too many things to even try to mention here. Jason joins Ross Harvey as co-portmaster of the NetBSD/alpha.

02 Mar 2000 - NetBSD News Channels (top)

Two new channels have been created using Rich Site Summary files, an XML dialect, to provide NetBSD related News to content providers and their users. The files are parsed by news services today to retrieve information, and re-distribute it in their reader forums and/or sent out via mail directly to your cell phone, if you decide so. Both general NetBSD News and News related to the NetBSD Packages Collection are now available not only from the NetBSD web site, but also from the sites listed on the RSS-page.


February 2000

29 Feb 2000 - New test kernels for SMP on i386 (top)

Bill Sommerfeld has put up a second round of test kernels for SMP on i386. See Bill's announcement in the tech-smp mail archive for a list of changes since the first round and more details.

29 Feb 2000 - New kernel option regarding RAIDframe (top)

Greg Oster has added a new kernel option, RAID_AUTOCONFIG, to NetBSD-current. Adding:

options RAID_AUTOCONFIG

to your kernel config will enable the auto-detection of RAID components and auto-configuration of RAID sets. More information is available in the recently updated raid(4) and raidctl(8) manpages.

25 Feb 2000 - Improvements to Soft Updates (top)

Ethan Solomita has fixed several known bugs regarding Soft Updates, including:

  • Out of memory panic in kmem_map
  • Fix to "SPL NOT LOWERED ON SYSCALL EXIT" kernel message
  • Livelock with lots of disk activity, but no forward progress
  • Panic from link count being changed

among several others. It should be a much more stable filesystem now and the performance improvements can be tremendous. Update: Information on how to enable softdeps is located in the How to use soft updates FAQ entry.

24 Feb 2000 - IP security FAQ (top)

IP security FAQ is now available. It describes support coverage of NetBSD IPsec code, standard conformance, and how to enable/configure/use it.

22 Feb 2000 - Initial work for SMP on i386 committed (top)

Bill Sommerfeld has committed his initial work on i386 SMP spinup code to the sommerfeld_i386mp_1 branch. See his mail for more details. Update: Kernels for testing are now available, see Bill's other mail.

16 Feb 2000 - Security Advisories for ptrace(2) and procfs (top)

Two new Security Advisories have been released:

  • NetBSD-SA1999-012 deals with a vulnerability in the ptrace(2) system call, and is applicable to the NetBSD/vax platform only.
  • NetBSD-SA2000-001 deals with a vulnerability in the procfs filesystem.
    UPDATED: This SA has been updated to include new information; the problem is applicable to a wider range of systems than described in the original version.

Both of these vulnerabilities apply to NetBSD releases 1.4.1 and earlier, as well as to NetBSD-current prior to the dates listed in the advisories. The fixes have been incorporated into the upcoming NetBSD 1.4.2 release.

More information on previous security advisories is available in the NetBSD security pages.

14 Feb 2000 - Large number of changes to RAIDframe code (top)

Greg Oster has checked in a multitude of changes to the RAIDframe code. What follows is a summary of what's new and exciting:

  1. The size (and content) of the component labels have changed. You'll want to make sure you're using 'raidctl' from the same date as the kernel.
  2. /sbin/disklabel supports a 'RAID' partition type, which indicates that the partition is a component of a RAID set. Partitions of the type RAID are not required at this time—the old 4.2BSD partition type (with fsize, bsize, and cpg ignored) still works fine. The RAID type is needed for 3) however.
  3. A "first cut" at RAID autoconfiguration code has been committed but is disabled by default. When enabled, partitions of type RAID are automagically detected at boot time, and assuming there are enough components and enough set information, the corresponding RAID set is automatically configured before / is available (this is critical for 4).
  4. A "first cut" at 'root' on a RAID partition has been checked in. This still requires a lot of testing, but it does work. At the moment it looks like we may be stuck getting a kernel from some other place (e.g. a separate, non-RAID partition).

The full text of this announcement is available in the current-users mail archive. Also, you can always keep up with the latest RAIDframe developments at http://www.cs.usask.ca/staff/oster/raid.html.

14 Feb 2000 - New developers (top)

The NetBSD Project is pleased to welcome four new developers:

  • Ken Raeburn, who will be working on ipv6 and krb5.
  • Nonaka Kimihiro, who will be working on prep port.
  • Bill Squier, who will be working on lm78, sgi, and misc drivers.
  • Todd Whitesel, who will be working on snapshots.

10 Feb 2000 - Recent pcmcia irq changes (top)

Christian E. Hopps has committed code to NetBSD-current that probes to discover the irq lines wired and usable by the pcic device.

The code should support everything except the Cirrus chipset. The Cirrus chips do not implement the full i82365 register set, leaving out the ability to cause soft-interrupts (i.e., poke them and they interrupt). This ability is a pc97 requirement that Cirrus doesn't support.

If you have a chipset other than Cirrus you should be able to remove

options PCIC_ISA_INTR_ALLOC_MASK=<somemask>

from your kernel config and have everything found correctly. If you're going to do this please read Christian's message in its entirety at the current-users mail archive for additional details.

09 Feb 2000 - The NetBSD/i386 firewall project (top)

The NetBSD/i386 Firewall projects aims to provide a free firewall solution for people with a permanent Internet connection. This includes most users of cable or ADSL services, but also businesses with leased lines.

09 Feb 2000 - PSO Systems' TCP/IP Stack for VxWorks (top)

PSO systems ported the NetBSD TCP/IP networking stack to VxWorks, to produce their PSO Stack product. They selected NetBSD since the networking is more mature than that of Linux, and the licences are better for embedded work.

09 Feb 2000 - IEEE WaveLan driver gets encryption support (top)

WEP encryption bits have been added to the wi driver. The way to set keys, enable encryption, etc is:

        wiconfig -i wi0 -k 0x0123456789012345678901234567 -v 1
        wiconfig -i wi0 -T 1
        wiconfig -i wi0 -e 1

That will set the key (key #1, to be exact), set the transmit key to #1, and enable encryption.

09 Feb 2000 - Driver for Aviator 2.4 / PRO and Raylink 802.11 FH (top)

Christian E. Hopps has written a driver for NetBSD-current which adds support for the WebGear Aviator 2.4 / Pro and Raytheon Raylink 802.11 FH. Also, support has been added to ifconfig to configure the network ID and set adhoc/infrastructure mode through media options.

09 Feb 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in January 2000 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in January 2000 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

04 Feb 2000 - How the change in USA crypto export laws affects NetBSD (top)

The core team's consensus decision on how NetBSD should react in light of the apparently changed crypto laws is as follows:

  • Ensure that the said laws are in effect, and that NetBSD is permitted to export crypto and have USA developers work on foreign crypto.
  • Ensure that the appropriate paperwork is submitted to fulfill any requirements to permit the above to occur.
  • Merge any salient code from crypto-us into crypto-intl, and maintain one code base for crypto in a repository which is off-shore from the USA.
  • Deprecate crypto-us

The rationale behind deprecating crypto-us would be due to the fact that USA developers would be allowed to work on foreign crypto source and re-export foreign crypto in source and binary. Also, in the worst case scenario, if the USA government changes its stance to be less helpful, NetBSD would be better off.

This position is based on none of the above if it results in behaviour which is contrary to the new laws.

03 Feb 2000 - Luke Mewburn has released lukemftp 1.2 (top)

A new release of lukemftp, a port of the enhanced NetBSD ftp client to other systems, is now available. lukemftp uses an autoconf configure script and replacement library for systems which don't have NetBSD-specific library functions. This version fixes bugs, adds new features, and further improves portability. The main ftp site for lukemftp is ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/misc/lukemftp/.

03 Feb 2000 - Added support for AdvanSys LVD SCSI boards (top)

NetBSD now supports the AdvanSys U2W SCSI host adapters. These boards are handled by the adw driver which now support all of the following:

  • ABP-940UW
  • ABP-940UW (68)
  • ABP-940UWD
  • ABP-970UW
  • ASB-3940UW
  • ASB-3940U2W-00
  • ABP-940UW
  • ABP-940UW (68)
  • ABP-940UWD
  • ABP-970UW
  • ASB-3940UW
  • ASB-3940U2W-00

03 Feb 2000 - Wildcards for the NetBSD Packages System (top)

After more than one year of development, Hubert Feyrer has committed the final changes to the NetBSD Packages System to make it fully capable of handling wildcard dependencies in both source (pkgsrc) and binary packages (via the pkg_* tools). See the page on pkg wildcards.


January 2000

28 Jan 2000 - Canadian Special Olympics 2000 Winter Games (top)

The Canadian Special Olympics 2000 Winter Games are using several NetBSD servers to provide connectivity, file storage, and backup. At the main office, a NetBSD server has been providing shared and secure Internet dial service for up to 20 machines, as well as file storage and automated off-site backups from June 1999. As the Games approached, several other NetBSD servers were set up on lan's at the various event venues to provide Internet service for event officials, the media, and the athletes. These servers allow officials to post results to the web site immediately after the results are finalized, media to communicate stories and results to their offices, and athletes to send email back home and check out the results.

The CSO 2000 Winter Games run from January 25th to January 29th, 2000 in Ottawa, Ontario.

18 Jan 2000 - Support for USB Ethernet adapters (top)

All(?) currently available USB-Ethernet adapters are now supported by NetBSD by importing Bill Paul's drivers from FreeBSD. There are three different drivers: aue, cue, and kue.

11 Jan 2000 - Changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection in December 1999 (top)

Alistair G. Crooks has sent out his monthly summary of changes to the NetBSD Packages Collection. The write up for changes in December 1999 is available in the netbsd-announce mail archive.

There is also an automated list of pkgsrc changes, generated daily from pkgsrc/doc/CHANGES, available on the Recent packages changes page.

10 Jan 2000 - Recent ftpd enhancements (top)

Luke Mewburn has been improving ftpd recently. Here's a list of some of the enhancements (over the ftpd in NetBSD 1.4):

  • Connection limits
  • ftpusers(5): support allocation into specific classes based on username, group membership, or remote hostname/address (with globbing in each)
  • Display (and log) transfer stats for each connection
  • Configurable motd file
  • Transfer rate limit/throttle
  • Disabling of uploads
  • Support for % escapes in files displayed to the user
  • Manage utmp(5) entries
  • Class templates, to simplify ftpd.conf rules
  • Define hostname to return to client (makes setting a virtual ftp server trivial, when used in conjunction with inetd(8)'s ability to bind a service to a given ip address).

More information is available in -current in ftpd(8), ftpd.conf(5), ftpusers(5), and in the example config files in /usr/share/examples/ftpd/. Note: the links above will be to the 1.4 manpages.

08 Jan 2000 - NetBSD 'features' page (top)

The features page is intended to provide valuable information to anyone interested in NetBSD.

05 Jan 2000 - NetBSD/luna68k port committed (top)

Tohru Nishimura has committed a NetBSD/luna68k port to the NetBSD-current source tree. NetBSD/luna68k is a port for OMRON Tateishi Electric's m68k based LUNA desktop product line.

05 Jan 2000 - JDK 1.1.8 RC1 available for i386 (top)

Version 1.1.8 of the Sun JDK for the i386 platform is now available for testing. This version requires NetBSD 1.4 or later. A gzipped tar file can be found at:

ftp://ftp.NetBSD.org/pub/NetBSD/misc/java/i386/1.1.8/.

Please report problems to .