Title : OpenBSD -current - Frequently Asked Questions
Author: Solène
Date : 27 March 2020
Tags : openbsd
Hello, as there are so many questions about OpenBSD -current on IRC, Mastodon
or reddit I'm writing this FAQ in hope it will help people.
The official FAQ already contains answers about -current like [Following
-current and using snapshots](https://www.openbsd.org/faq/current.html) and
[Building the system from
sources](https://www.openbsd.org/faq/faq5.html#Flavors).
## What is OpenBSD -current?
OpenBSD -current is the development version of OpenBSD. Lot of people use it
for everyday tasks.
## How to install OpenBSD -current?
OpenBSD -current refers to the last version built from sources obtained with
CVS, however, it's also possible to get a pre-built system (a snapshot) usually
built and pushed on mirrors every 1 or 2 days.
You can install OpenBSD -current by getting an installation media like usual,
but on the path /pub/OpenBSD/snapshots/ on the mirror.
## How do I upgrade from -release to -current?
There are two ways to do so:
1. Download bsd.rd file from the snapshots directory and boot it to upgrade
like for a -release to -release upgrade
2. Run `sysupgrade -s` command as root, this will basically download all sets
under `/home/_sysupgrade` and boot on bsd.rd with an `autoinstall(8)`
config.
## How do I upgrade my -current snapshot to a newer snapshot?
Exactly the same process as going from -release to -current.
## Can I downgrade to a -release if I switch to -current?
No.
## What issues can I expect in OpenBSD -current?
There are a few issues possibles that one can expect
### Out of sync packages
If a library get updated into the base system and you want to update packages,
they won't be installable until packages are rebuilt with that new library,
this usually takes 1 up to 3 days.
**This only create issues in case you want to install a package you don't have.**
The other way around, you can have an old snapshot and packages are not
installable because the libraries linked to by the packages are newer than what
is available in your system, in this case you have to upgrade snapshot.
### Snapshots sets are getting updated on the mirror
If you download the sets on the mirror to update your -current version, you may
have an issue with the sha256 sum, this is because the mirror is getting
updated and the sha256 file is the first to be transferred, so sets you are
downloading are not the one the sha256 will compare.
### Unexpected system breakage
Sometimes, very rarely (maybe 2 or 3 time in a year?), some snapshots are
borked and will prevent system to boot or lead to regularly crashes. In that
case, it's important to report the issue with the `sendbug` utility.
You can fix this by using an older snapshot from [this archives
server](http://ftp.hostserver.de/archive/) and prevent this to happen by
reading bugs@ mailing list before updating.
### Broken package
Sometimes, a package update will break it or break some others packages, this
is often quickly fixed on popular packages but in some niche packages you may
be the only one using it on -current and the only one who can report about it.
If you find breakage on something you use, it may be a good idea to report the
problem on ports@openbsd.org mailing list if nobody did before. By doing so,
the issue will be fixed and next -release users will be able to install a
working package.
## Is -current stable enough for a server or a workstation?
It's really up to you. Developers are all using -current and are forbidden to
break it, so the system should totally be usable for everyday use.
What may be complicated on a server is keep updating it regularly and face
issues requires troubleshooting (like major database upgrade which was missing
a quirk).
For a workstation I think it's pretty safe as long as you can deal with
packages that can't be installed until they are in sync.