The FreeBSD July-December 2004 Status Report is now available. I found the following entries to be important.
From Release engineering:
"FreeBSD 5.4 release engineering will start in March, and FreeBSD 5.5 release engineering will likely start in June. These releases are expected to be more conservative than previous 5.x releases and will follow the same philosophy as previous -STABLE branches of fixing bugs and adding incremental improvements while maintaining API stability.
For the 6-CURRENT development branch as well as all future development and stable branches, we are planning to move to a schedule with fixed timelines that move away from the uncertainty and wild schedule fluctuations of the previous 5.x releases. This means that major branches will happen at 18 month intervals, and releases from those branches will happen at 4 month intervals. There will also be a dedicated period of testing and bug fixing at the beginning of each branch before the first release is cut from that branch. With the shorter and more defined release schedules, we hope to lessen the problem of needed features not reaching users in a reasonable time, as happened too often with 5.x. This is a significant change in our strategy, and we look forward to realizing the benefits of it. This will kick off with the RELENG_6 branch happing in June of 2005, followed by the 6.0 release in August of 2005.
Also on the roadmap is a plan to combine the live-iso disk2 and the install distributions of disk1 into a single disk which can be used for both installation and for recovery. 3rd party packages that currently reside on disc1 will be moved to a disk2 that will be dedicated to these packages. This move will allow us to deal with the ever growing size of packages and also provide more flexibility to vendors that wish to add their own packages to the releases. It also opens the door to more advanced installers being put in place of sysinstall."
From OpenBSD packet filter:
"FreeBSD 5.3 is the first release to include PF. It went out okay, but some bugs were discovered too late to make it on the CD. It is recommend to update `src/sys/contrib/pf' to RELENG_5. The specific issues addressed are:
* Possible NULL-deref with user/group rules.
* Crash with binat on dynamic interfaces.
* Silent dropping of IPv6 packets with option headers.
* Endless loops with `static-port' rules."
From OpenOffice.org port status:
"OpenOffice.org 2.0 is planned to be released in March 2005. Currently developer snapshot versions are available. Now one of the developer version has been ported, and committed to ports tree (/usr/ports/editors/openoffice-2.0-devel)."
1.1.4 has been ported and committed to ports tree. Packages are available.
Invoking OpenOffice.org from command line has been changed. Now `.org' is mandatory. e.g. openoffice-1.1.4 -> openoffice.org-1.1.4. Since the name of the software is OpenOffice.org, not OpenOffice. We are also considering the name of the ports (/usr/ports/editors/openoffice-2.0-devel -> openoffice.org2-devel etc)."