Fundraising for FreeBSD security development

Slightly more than three years ago, I released FreeBSD Update, my first major contribution to FreeBSD. Since then, I have become a FreeBSD committer, joined the FreeBSD Security Team, released Portsnap, and become the FreeBSD Security Officer. However, as I have gone from being a graduate student at Oxford University -- busy writing my thesis -- to a researcher at Simon Fraser University -- busy doing research and writing papers -- my "to do" list of FreeBSD-related work has continued growing, and I have now come to realize that some of the items on that list will probably never be finished until I get a chance to work full-time on FreeBSD.

This is where I hope that FreeBSD users will come in. I'm hoping to raise $15,000 Canadian (about US$13,000) to pay me to work full-time on FreeBSD for 16 weeks over the summer. This will allow me to devote more time to my role as FreeBSD Security Officer, perform a complete overhaul of FreeBSD Update, and make some significant improvements to Portsnap.

Based on my estimates of the number of systems currently using Portsnap and FreeBSD Update (about 8500 and 4500 respectively based on my server logs) this works out to one US dollar per computer (or two dollars for systems using both Portsnap and FreeBSD Update); I don't think this is an unreasonable amount to ask for even if I only receive donations from people who are using Portsnap or FreeBSD Update. That said, if I don't reach my target for donations, I'll get as much work done within the time I have funds for before returning to other paying work (most likely at the university again).

For more details, see my page at

Posted at 2006-03-30 21:30 | Permanent link | Comments
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