Conference Schedule - BSDCan 2023

Syspack: Helper Toolkit for Sysadmins and Developers Based on BSD Make

Date: 2023-05-19
Time: 11:15–12:00
Room: DMS 1120
Level: Intermediate

People using Unix-like operating systems usually do many routine tasks for system administration, development, and deployment. Writing shell scripts is one of the most popular ways to automate them, and there are also various software packages to do the same thing. However, keeping the hand-rolled recipes organized is difficult because the fancy software often hides the details too much and focuses only on the final derivatives. The development process involving iteration of trials and errors is still a pain, and it tends to result in "forgetting the details after it worked."

This talk introduces Syspack, which is one of the attempts to provide a scalable toolkit to fill the gap between "too primitive" and "too abstract" for people who are familiar with the traditional command-line workflow. The Syspack's goals are as follows:

  • a non-intrusive, portable tool to simplify your normal development and system management workflow by organizing it, not by hiding the details too much, and
  • scalable from managing a single configuration file to building/testing a system and deploying its bootable image.

Syspack has been implemented using shell scripts and BSD Make, which BSD people are familiar with and whose flexibility has been proved by the ports system.

The following topics will be covered in this talk:

  • The motivation and targets of Syspack
  • Workflow for configuration file management
  • Building and deploying an app, a system, or a virtual machine
  • Implementation details and extendability
  • Future work


The following slides have been made available for this session:


Hiroki Sato