pulling the plug on OpenBSD/mac68k

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pulling the plug on OpenBSD/mac68k

Miod Vallat
Hello folks,

  unless you had been living in on a rainbow[1], you had seen it coming:
OpenBSD/mac68k has been retired to the Attic today.

  There will be no more OpenBSD activity on this platform. Reasons
behind this are multiple:
- lack of manpower and motivated developers is the main reason.
- low-end hardware platform (no DMA controller... come on... except on the
  AV models, for which there is no proper documentation anyway)
- no friendly firmware: it's a shame we need to use MacOS as the
  bootloader. Projects such as EMILE[2] allow for real MacOS-free
  systems to be built, but only on a few systems.

  Also, we are worried that the horsepower of these old systems is not
enough to allow for proper security[3]. Although we hope none of you
OpenBSD/mac68k users have your macs directly connected to the hostile
internet, these platforms can not provide enough crypto performance and
enough entropy to be deemed reliable, as soon as you untrusted users
having access to them.

  If you had been running OpenBSD on your macs until today, we are
thanking you for your trust in OpenBSD. However, we are strongly
advising you to replace them with better systems. Really, do yourself a
favour and pick any other supported machine. You won't regret it.


[1] Beware of the rainbow's end: http://www.faradaytheblob.com/?p=417
[2] http://emile.sourceforge.net/ is a standalone bootloader for a very
    small subset of 68k-based macintoshes
[3] Note that this does not only concern mac68k, but the other
    m68k-based platforms, and arguably more systems. They might forcibly
    get retired soon. The unofficial project policy is to keep
    supporting a platform as long as the fastest systems available still
    meet our security requirements. Thus we are still supporting (and
    running fine, I'd mention) on a 16.66MHz Sun 4/260 - which still
    runs circles around most of the m68k macintoshes due to a much
    better memory and I/O system - because the same kernel will also run
    on much faster sparc systems.

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Re: pulling the plug on OpenBSD/mac68k

David Diggles-2
I still plan to keep my SE/30 running 4.4 till it dies.

Too much of a novelty to give up on it.

It is just an ascii art lava lamp after all, and not a random number server
for online poker games, or ecommerce transaction server, or vpn gateway.

It's amazing what is still in production out there, like PDP11's and such.

Oh the other hand, I can understand why OpenBSD is moving on.

*plays The Last Post .wav*