FreeBSD/EC2 update

The FreeBSD 9.1 release process is taking a bit longer than we hoped for; but six weeks after 9.1-RC1, FreeBSD 9.1-RC2 is now on its way out to the FreeBSD mirror network — I imagine that Ken will send out an email officially announcing its avaiability on Monday. As usual, I have built some EC2 AMIs for this release candidate; and I took the opportunity to make some changes in how the AMIs work.

Most importantly, starting with FreeBSD 9.1-RC2 you will need to SSH in as "ec2-user". I've never been very happy with opening up SSH to root, and it seems that "ec2-user" is as much of a standard account name as anything. Once logged in, you can su to root, of course — there's no password set in the AMI.

The other change I made was in how I built the disk image. Until now, I was taking a standard "build from source code" approach — build everything, then make distrib-dirs distribution installworld installkernel. I've now switched over to using bits from the published ISO: I install the "base", "games", "doc", and (on amd64) "lib32" bits from the ISO, and the only part I build myself and install into the image is the (patched) FreeBSD kernel. This has very little user-visible impact (probably the only change anyone will ever see from this is that 'freebsd-update IDS' doesn't complain about library files which are different due to internal timestamps) but gets me one step closer to my goal of an "all release bits" AMI.

If nobody reports any problems, this is what FreeBSD 9.1-RELEASE is going to look like when it is released in about 3 weeks. While I'd love to believe that everything is perfect, I'm sure there's going to be at least a few minor glitches lurking... so if you want a better 9.1-RELEASE, go forth and test!

Posted at 2012-10-07 00:30 | Permanent link | Comments
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