The answer is “not very”. As I wrote in a post to kernel@, DragonFly 3.0 will be tagged soon, and released when there’s pkgsrc-2011Q4 packages to go with it. Probably a week if everything goes to plan.
The presence of /usr/include/crypt.h in DragonFly (starting in December 2010) meant that some programs compiled during that time will expect that file to always be there. It was recently removed, so any programs compiled in that timeframe will also need to be recompiled. Right now, this affects you only if you are running DragonFly 2.13 , since that’s the only place crypt.h was removed. This may be an issue for the release, but we’ll worry about that when we get there… I’m kicking off new 2.13 bulk builds now.
There’s a rare crash in DragonFly 2.10, where applications would segfault. The system would run find. This is apparently more likely to happen in 2.12, though reports on this vary. It’s real, though.
Matthew Dillon went looking for this bug, and happened to roll back vm_token, the last lock in DragonFly that presented a serious impediment to multiprocessing. It’s a big patch. It fixes the problem, which is great! It also happens to make DragonFly buildworlds almost twice as fast depending on the number of cores in the system.
Holy crap we want to get that out… but it makes some significant changes to the system and needs to be tested. So, the next release probably won’t be for a few weeks.
If you want to help, build master and do something with it – move data, run server programs, whatever. Report crashes. This performance improvement is worth working for.
Some ISA devices have been removed from DragonFly. That probably affects approximately 0% of everyone, cause they’re old devices, but a few of them
are were in the GENERIC kernel configs, so you’ll get an error for an unrecognized option when you next rebuild your kernel using a GENERIC-based config, based on an older version of GENERIC. The description of which drivers went is quite sensibly placed in UPDATING.
If you’re running 64-bit DragonFly, and you’re on version 2.11, you will want to rebuild with the latest sources. Peter Avalos found a bug with file descriptor passing, and Venkatesh Srinivas fixed it. It will require a quickworld/kernel build – maybe a full buildworld and kernel? I’m not sure. Some pkgsrc packages might need recompilation, too if they also passed file descriptors around.
17 different ISA device drivers have been removed by Sascha Wildner. The commit message has device descriptions. This may mean you need to change your kernel configuration file on the next buildkernel, since some of them were in the GENERIC kernel. If you need any of them, speak up. (I don’t think I’ve ever used any of them. Oh darn.)
If you are a Summer of Code student or mentor, make sure you’ve filled out your midterm survey. Without it, your project fails – and they are due for everyone in roughly the next 24 hours!
The SMP option is now in the GENERIC kernel config. This means you’ll have a SMP-capable kernel even on an uniprocessor machine, unless you configure a special kernel.
Also, Matthew Dillon has made version 6 the default version of Hammer in DragonFly 2.9. Version 6 has improved handling of directory names in some circumstances. Just don’t ask me which, cause I lost track. It’s been a hard day!
The mentor signup page for Google Summer of Code 2011 as of this writing still says “We have temporarily disabled the creation of new requests and invites in preparation of the launch of the new UI for Melange later this week.”, as it has said since the 20th.
So, if you’re wanting to mentor, keep an eye on it. I’ll send mentor requests to any of the names on my list of people that have already expressed interest, if I get to a working version of the page before you do…
A full buildworld/buildkernel is probably the best strategy. I’ll be rebuilding all the pkgsrc packages for 2.9 using gcc 4.4… This will take at least a week.
avalon.dragonflybsd.org, also known as mirror-master.dragonflybsd.org, is back up at a new location, with new disks and new connectivity. pkg_radd should work by default again, as should git.dragonflybsd.org.
Avalon, the machine that works as the master mirror site for DragonFly, and also as git.dragonflybsd.org, is being moved. Binary package downloads and source updates won’t work in the meantime. If you can’t wait for the system to come back, change the settings for pkg_radd or in /usr/Makefile to point at a different host.
Bleeding-edge DragonFly may suffer some instability issues; Matthew Dillon is making scheduler changes to accomodate larger numbers of CPUs. On the other hand: yay, better performance!