Basic questions

Q. What does the 'k' in "kFreeBSD" stand for?

A. It's an abbreviation. It stands for "kernel of". Hence "kFreeBSD" means "kernel of FreeBSD", and "GNU/kFreeBSD" means "GNU with kernel of FreeBSD".

Q. What is the point of Debian GNU/kFreeBSD?

A. This answer has its own wiki page, see: ["Debian GNU/kFreeBSD why"]

Q. What version of kFreeBSD is supported?

A. The latest GNU/kFreeBSD install CD is based on 6.2 kernel, see [ for details].

Q. Which Debian releases are available?

A. There is regularly available only "unstable" release. But as "unstable" is sometimes really unstable, we provide also etch based snapshot of GNU/kFreeBSD archive. Just use install CD from [ March 2007] and put into your /etc/apt/sources.list

deb unstable main
deb unreleased main
deb dists/etch/main/binary-i386/

Q. Can I run Debian GNU/kFreeBSD in a chroot under FreeBSD?

A. Yes, but it won't work perfectly unless you apply some kernel patches. You can get them from the Debian kfreebsd-6 source package, but it is up to you to find out and decide which ones you need. We recommend to use a Debian kernel for running Debian GNU/kFreeBSD userland. In case something fails, you're on your own.

Q. Can I share a swap partition between GNU/Linux and GNU/kFreeBSD?

A. Yes, but it's not recommended. See for details on how to proceed. Also note that Linux tends to save suspend-to-disk data to the swap partition, which makes sharing swap less attractive.

Q. Can I share partitions between GNU/Linux and GNU/kFreeBSD?

A. Yes, but you must use ext2fs. When creating the filesystem, pass "-O none" to mke2fs for best results.

For ufs (either 1 or 2) are only supported readonly by Linux. Write support is highly experimental and is likely to cause panics.

For ext3fs, kFreeBSD can only access it in readonly mode.

For reiserfs, readonly support has been added to kfreebsd 6.x (see #335019).

For xfs, readonly support has been added to kfreebsd 7.x (see #335020 for details). Write support is also planned.

Q. What's the status of amd64 support?

A. It is only slightly behind the i386 one. You're welcome to try it out, and help is appreciated in debugging and cleaning it up. Also, if you donate hardware for that purpose please let us know.

Q. apt-get complains that it can't verify binaries. I installed gnupg but the errors persist.

A. You probably don't have the gnuab archive key imported. Try:

gpg --keyserver --recv 19BFB8AB && gpg --export 19BFB8AB | sudo apt-key add -

Note, however, that pure "Architecture: all" packages still can't be verified because of the hack apt uses to get them from official archive.

Q. I just installed Debian GNU/kFreeBSD. Is there anything I can do to help making it more popular?

A. Yes! You can install/enable popularity-contest (see to increase our user count. Also you can register yourself as Debian GNU/kFreeBSD user in You might also want to tell us how did you hear about Debian GNU/kFreeBSD [ in this poll]. And of course, you can tell all your friends about it =).

Q. Wireless?

A. Yes, but we don't have the tools to scan for networks yet. If you know the ssid beforehand, the following stanza in /etc/network/interfaces should work:

auto ${if}
iface ${if} inet dhcp
     pre-up ifconfig ${if} ssid ${my_ssid}

Q. Is there any way to upgrade to Debian-*bsd an existing, running FreeBSD installation (wheter it makes sense or not)

A. I am unsure about this. You can prepare filesystem on a different partition/slice and use chroot to install basic files. Look inside latest iso at, there is base/base.tgz inside install.iso. Unpack it into created chroot. But at least multi-threaded programs will not work under pristine FreeBSD kernel.

Q. Can *.deb packages co-exist with classical BSD ports ?

A. It is not good idea. Please use chroot for things like this.

Q. Are the *.deb packages for *bsd handled the same old way they did on linux, or they simply use /usr/local filesystem ?

A. In the same way as on other Debian system - usual prefix is /usr

Q. What about some specs I once read about leaving the use of /usr/local to the system administrator (Maybe these are concerning only to Linux...)

A. There are (almost) no files from any *.deb in /usr/local/ It is really left for local system administrator.

Development questions

Q. Where can I check buildd logs for a particular package on kfreebsd-i386?

A. and

Q. Where can I check buildd logs for a particular package on kfreebsd-amd64?

A. and

Q. I'm a Debian maintainer. Is there any machine running GNU/kFreeBSD I can have access to?

A. Yes, see and