Convert a FreeBSD System to PC-BSD®/9.2

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Beginning in February, 2013, the PC-BSD® utilities dealing with software installation and upgrades were converted to pkgng, FreeBSD's Next Generation package management tool. Part of this change included the creation of a custom PC-BSD® package repository which contains all of the packages that can be built using pkgng. Since the FreeBSD project does not yet have an official pkgng repository, FreeBSD users who wish to use pkgng are welcome to use the PC-BSD® package repository.

This package repository also contains a custom package, called pcbsd-base, which can be used to easily convert an existing FreeBSD installation into either a PC-BSD® desktop or a TrueOS® server. The converted desktop will contain all of the graphical utilities that come with PC-BSD® and the converted server will contain all of their command line equivalents.

This section describes how to:

  • Configure a FreeBSD or PC-BSD® system to use the pkgng repository.
  • Convert a FreeBSD system to a PC-BSD® desktop.
  • Convert a FreeBSD system to a TrueOS® server.

Switching to the PC-BSD® pkgng Repository

If you are running PC-BSD® 9.1-RELEASE or FreeBSD 9.1, you will need to first install the ports-mgmt/pkg port or package.

After installing pkg, run the command pkg2ng to import your existing package database from the old format to the new pkgng format.

Next, configure access to the PC-BSD® repository. Start by creating the file /usr/local/etc/pkg.conf with the following contents:

packagesite: ftp://ftp.pcbsd.org/pub/mirror/packages/9.1-RELEASE/amd64/

PUBKEY: /usr/local/etc/pkg-pubkey.cert

PKG_CACHEDIR: /usr/local/tmp

Note that the packagesite: variable should be changed to a PC-BSD® mirror close to your geographic location. Additionally, 9.1-RELEASE and amd64 can be changed to indicate the release version and architecture you want to use. Click here to get a list of the available mirrors and package sets.

Next, download the repository's public key cert file, and copy it to /usr/local/etc/pkg-pubkey.cert.

The system is now configured and you now update your packages to the latest versions from the pkgng repository using the following command:

pkg upgrade -fy

Depending upon what is already installed, you may have to resolve some error messages in order to successfully upgrade all packages.

To install and delete packages use the pkg command. This command differs in usage from the original package format version. You can learn more about how to use this command in Section 5.5.3 of the FreeBSD Handbook.

Converting to PC-BSD

Once the repository configuration is complete, it is now easy to convert a FreeBSD system into a PC-BSD® desktop using the following commands as the superuser:

pkg install -fy pcbsd-base

rehash pbreg set /PC-BSD/SysType PCBSD pc-extractoverlay desktop

pc-extractoverlay ports

Next, reboot the system and the PC-BSD® login manager will start, allowing you to login to the desktop. If you want the [Post Installation Configuration and Installation Troubleshooting |PC-BSD® display wizard and first boot wizards] to run first, run these commands before rebooting:

touch /var/.runxsetup

touch /var/.pcbsd-firstboot

touch /var/.pcbsd-firstgui

If you are running FreeBSD 10-CURRENT, specify the PBI version to pull from. To do so, edit /usr/local/etc/pbi.conf and add this line:

PBI_FBSDMAJOR: 9

TIP!

If you are using NVIDIA video hardware you may want to load their driver before rebooting into the display wizard:

# pc-metapkgmanager add NVIDIA

Converting to TrueOS

If you wish to convert your server into TrueOS you can quickly do so using the following commands:

# pkg install -fy trueos-base

# rehash # pbreg set /PC-BSD/SysType TRUEOS # pc-extractoverlay server

# pc-extractoverlay ports