OpenBSD PF versus FreeBSD PF

I encountered yet another discussion about OpenBSD PF versus FreeBSD PF. For those who are new to the discussion: OpenBSD developers created PF in 2001, and it rapidly improved to become the most approachable open source packet filter. FreeBSD ported PF over to its kernel in 2004, with occasional updates since. Today a whole bunch of folks who don’t program echo cultish wisdom that one or the other version of PF has fallen behind, not kept up on improvements, or otherwise betrayed their community. My subtler comments have been misinterpreted, so let’s try this.

These claims are garbage.

Contrary to what the peanut gallery of open source thinks, in general, the rule is that open source teams work together all the time, more often than not across project lines. Of course the OpenBSD developers are working together and sharing code when it comes to things like PF – they most likely share a lot of features and code, and while one of the two versions of PF might get a certain feature first, it will make its way to the other soon enough.

These are professionals – not forum posters.


  1. 2023-09-29 12:16 am
  2. 2023-09-30 11:52 pm