Since last October binary packages have been available for FreeBSD (http://lists.freebsd.org/pipermail/freebsd-pkg/2013-October/000107.html). Before that, they had some trouble, preventing binary packages from being published.

At this moment, is there any reason not to rely on the binary packages mirrors? Is there any chance that a security breach would be found and the binary package disappearing again?

For a new installation, does it still make sense to build things from the ports tree yourself, or is it stable enough to use only binary packages (provided you need everything with default compile flags)?

1 Answer 1


pkg pretty much still contains a snapshot of whatever is in ports so yes, as you may have noticed, ports get temporarily "disabled" if a really critical security problem is found until it is resolved, which would reflect on pkg.

pkg is also a build of ports with the default options, which is why I can't use it for all my needs, but I try to use it wherever I can and just build a minimal set of software from ports with the custom options I need - the rest I get from pkg.

tl;dr: you can depend on it

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