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25 February 2011, 12:26

FreeBSD 8.2 and 7.4 released

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After some delays the FreeBSD developers have now released FreeBSD 8.2 and the legacy version FreeBSD 7.4. Originally scheduled for January 24 the releases were put back to allow for a third release candidate.

FreeBSD 8.2 adds some new features and improves on the functionality of 8.1. These include improvements in Xen HVM support in FreeBSD for the amd64 platform and Xen PV support in FreeBSD for the i386 platform, BIND and OpenSSL updates, GNOME and KDE desktops updated to versions 2.32.1 and 4.5.5 respectively. ZFS on-disk format updated to version 15, the addition of the aesni driver for Intel AESNI crypto instruction set and many miscellaneous improvements and bug fixes.

An OpenSSL bug was discovered at a late stage in the release process where an incorrectly formatted ClientHello SSL / TLS handshake message could result in parsing past the end of a message. This was fixed by importing the relevant parts from the OpenSSL CVS. More details on this bug are available on

The legacy release of FreeBSD 7.4 sees the same OpenSSL bug fixed and similar updates to its desktops. Other changes include the shared object version numbers of libcrypto and libssl decreased from 6 to 5 to correct an unintentional increment introduced in November 2010 when OpenSSL 0.9.8p was merged. Library files with the version number 6 are still provided in the release as symbolic links to prevent binaries built in the time window with the accidentally increased version number from being broken after a system gets updated to 7.4.

Further details on the FreeBSD 8.2 release are available in the the 8.2 release notes and errata files and, for 7.4, in the 7.4 release notes and errata files.

FreeBSD 8.2-RELEASE for the AMD64, i386, ia64, NEC pc98, PowerPC and SPARC64 architectures and FreeBSD 7.4-RELEASE for the AMD64, i386, NEC pc98 and SPARC64 are available to download as ISO images from the FreeBSD download page under the BSD licence.

Those wishing to try FreeBSD and not wanting to bother with a full install can try the previous version FreeBSD 8.1 as a virtual appliance.

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