July 21, 2023

Seems like there are two types of people in the world when it comes to upgrading software. The folks who upgrade the minute the new version is released and the folks who keep putting it off until they absolutely have to. Honestly, I probably fall in the latter category but when it comes to FreeBSD, upgrading to the latest release provides you with better security, more features and just generally a smoother experience. The FreeBSD 13.2 release came out in April and for those of you who have not yet upgraded, we created a top ten list of reasons to upgrade today.

  1. Hundreds of bug fixes and improvements
  2. Numerous version upgrades of contributed software and drivers including OpenSSH, libarchive, LLVM and the Clang compiler 
  3. Workaround for a flaw in Intel 12th and 13th generation hybrid CPUs – The bug can lead to file system corruption with UFS and MSDOSFS, and probably other memory corruption. The slower cores (E-cores) automatically use a slower method of page invalidation with the workaround.
  4. Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) is now enabled for 64-bit executables by default, for greater security.
  5. The WireGuard VPN driver (wg(4)) has been re-integrated into the kernel, allowing access to a faster and more secure VPN experience.
  6. Kernel TLS (KTLS) has added receive offload support for TLS 1.3
  7. Intel WiFi drivers have been updated, and a driver for Realtek WiFi was added
  8. Snapshots are now possible on UFS file systems with journaled soft updates, allowing background backups
  9. The FreeBSD hypervisor, bhyve, supports more virtual CPUs
  10. DPDK routing modules have been added for systems with large routing tables

Of course, this is just a top ten list. The beauty of FreeBSD is that you can customize it to meet your needs. Be sure to check out the full release notes to see what else might have been updated to make your life easier. Remember, being a “pro” at procrastination never got anyone ahead. Upgrade to 13.2 today!