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I have a FreeBSD installation that had an upgrade failure between 8.? and 9.4 (IIRC). In the interest of getting 10.2 working properly on the machine, I downloaded the DVD image and burned a disc. Now I'm trying to figure out how to do the upgrade, and all I can find are instructions pointing to freebsd-update() which appears to only do an over-the-air upgrade, which would involve downloading FreeBSD again from the server. That's neither a reasonable use of my bandwidth nor the server's resources.

I booted onto the live CD, mounted the existing /usr partition, and copied the contents of the /usr/freebsd-dist to the hard disk so I'd have ready access to the source tree: I'm guessing I'm going to have to build the new installation from source.

Am I going down the right path? Is there an easier way to do this? Can I tell freebsd-update() to use the DVD instead of a remote server as the upgrade source? How would I do that?

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Am I going down the right path?

Not how I would do it.

Is there an easier way to do this?

Several. Easiest would be to just backup what you have and do a fresh install using the DVD you have.

Or if you wanted you could use the source to build the new version and upgrade that way. Docs for that are in the handbook, but beware there are cases where are required to upgrade stepwise (ie, without skipping a version in between) and the handbook doesn't document. As you are essentially upgrading from 8.x to 10.2 this may bite you. The handbook doesn't document these unfortunately (they are documented in the UPDATING fine in the root of the source tree). Also since you had an upgrade failure, you have run into other issues. I highly recommend backup and reinstall.

Can I tell freebsd-update() to use the DVD instead of a remote server as the upgrade source? How would I do that?

No, the stuff on the DVD isn't sufficient for freebsd-update to do it's job. The freebsd-update command doesn't just lay down new binaries, it compares your existing system binaries with the new release binaries and downloads binary diffs between them. Note also that if you upgrade via source you won't be able to use freebsd-update in the future. This is part of the reason I recommend backup and reinstall. See this section of the handbook for more details on freebsd-update.

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