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A wide variety of documentation is available for FreeBSD, on this web site, on other web sites, and available over the counter.

On this site

All the documentation on this site can be downloaded in a variety of different formats (HTML, Postscript, PDF, and more) and compression schemes (GZip, BZip2, Zip) from the FreeBSD FTP site.

This documentation is provided and maintained by the FreeBSD Documentation Project, and we are always looking for people to contribute new documentation and maintain existing documentation.


Frequently Asked Questions, and answers, covering all aspects of FreeBSD.

The FreeBSD Handbook
A constantly evolving, comprehensive resource for FreeBSD users.

The FreeBSD Developer's Handbook
For people who want to develop software for FreeBSD (and not just people who are developing FreeBSD itself).

Chapter 2 of "The Design and Implementation of the 4.4BSD Operating System"
Donated by Addison-Wesley, provides a design overview of 4.4BSD, from which FreeBSD was originally derived.

Chapter 8 of "The FreeBSD Corporate Networker's Guide"
Donated by Addison-Wesley, provides an in-depth look at using FreeBSD to provide printing services to Windows, NT, and Novell hosts.

The Pedantic PPP Primer
Everything you need to know about configuring PPP on FreeBSD.

The Porter's Handbook
Essential reading if you plan on providing a port of a third party piece of software.

The FreeBSD Documentation Project Primer for New Contributors
Everything you need to know in order to start contributing to the FreeBSD Documentation Project.


The Committer's Guide
Introductory information for FreeBSD committers.

Console Server Tutorial
How to setup a FreeBSD based console server with a cheap multi-port serial card.

Contributing to FreeBSD
How to contribute to the FreeBSD Project.

The List of FreeBSD Contributors
A list of organizations and individuals who have helped enhance FreeBSD.

CVSup Advanced Points
An article with some tips about the subtleties of CVSup.

Dialup firewalling with FreeBSD
How to set up a firewall using PPP and ipfw over a dialup link with dynamically assigned IP addresses.

Creating a diskless X server
How to create a diskless X server.

Filtering Bridges
Configuring firewalls and filtering on FreeBSD hosts acting as bridges rather than routers.

Fonts and FreeBSD
A description of the various font technologies in FreeBSD, and how to use them with different programs.

Formatting media on FreeBSD
How to slice, partition, and format fixed and removable media on FreeBSD.

How to get the best results from the FreeBSD-questions mailing list
Tips and tricks to help you maximize the chances of getting useful information from the -questions mailing list.

FreeBSD on Laptops
Information about running FreeBSD on a laptop.

An MH Primer
An introduction to using the MH mail reader on FreeBSD.

Using FreeBSD with other operating systems
How to install FreeBSD alongside one or more different operating systems on the same computer.

FreeBSD First Steps
For people coming to FreeBSD and Unix for the first time.


Writing + FreeBSD Problem Reports
+ How to best formulate and submit a problem report to the + FreeBSD Project.


Programming Tools on FreeBSD
This document has moved into The Developer's Handbook.

PXE booting FreeBSD
How to create an Intel PXE server using FreeBSD, and how to configure a FreeBSD client to boot from a PXE server.

Serial and UART devices
Detailed information about the use of serial ports on FreeBSD, including several multi-port serial cards.

FreeBSD and Solid State Devices
The use of solid state disk devices in FreeBSD.

Storage Devices
Detailed information about using storage devices with FreeBSD, including ESDI disks, and SCSI disks, tape drives, and CDROM drives.

Bootstrapping Vinum: A Foundation for Reliable Servers
A gentle introduction to failure-resilient servers and step-by-step instructions for building one with Vinum.

Design elements of the FreeBSD VM system
An easy to follow description of the design of the FreeBSD virtual memory system.

Zip-drives and FreeBSD
How to format, mount, and use an Iomega Zip (SCSI, IDE, or parallel) Drive on FreeBSD.

Manual pages

For release: 1.0, 1.1,, 2.0, 2.0.5, 2.1.0, 2.1.5,,, 2.2.1, 2.2.2, 2.2.5, 2.2.6, 2.2.7, 2.2.8, 3.0, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5.1, 4.0, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 4.4-stable, 5.0-current, Ports.
Other Systems
Unix Seventh Edition (V7), 2.8BSD, 2.9.1BSD, 2.10BSD, 2.11BSD, 4.3BSD Reno, NET/2, 386BSD 0.1, 4.4BSD Lite2, Linux, NetBSD, OpenBSD, Darwin, Plan 9, SunOS 4.x, SunOS 5.x, ULTRIX 4.2, and XFree86.

Other documentation

4.4BSD Documents: This is a hypertext version of the 4.4BSD documents from /usr/share/doc, where you will find the documents on a FreeBSD machine (if you install the doc distribution).

Info Documents: This is a hypertext version of the Info documents from /usr/share/info, where you will find the Info documents on a FreeBSD machine (if you install the info distribution).

On other web sites

Various independent efforts have also produced a great deal of useful information about FreeBSD.




In the real world...

FreeBSD in the Press

Articles in the press about FreeBSD.

Additional resources

Year 2000 Compatibility

The FreeBSD project's current statement about its Year 2000 compatibility.

BSD Real-Quick (TM) Newsletter

A monthly (sometimes bi-weekly) newsletter announcing recent developments in the FreeBSD arena. Subscribe to freebsd-announce to receive this newsletter via e-mail.

The Source Code

If you like digging your fingers into source code, here is a hypertext version of the FreeBSD kernel source. This is brought to you courtesy of Warren Toomey.

Daemon News

The industry leader in BSD news.

The FreeBSD 'zine

A monthly collection of easy to read (we hope) articles written by FreeBSD users and administrators just like you.

Like FreeBSD itself, this documentation is the product of a volunteer effort. The goals of the project are outlined here, as are the procedures for submitting corrections and new material.

The FreeBSD Diary

The FreeBSD Diary is a collection of how-to entries aimed at UNIX novices. The aim is to provide a set of step-by-step guides to installing and configuring various ports.