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Updated Debian and FreeBSD cloud server images

We’ve updated our Debian and FreeBSD Cloud Server images and a couple of details of how to use them have changed.

Debian 9

Debian 9 “Stretch” was released last week and now we have official images available - they’re the upstream pre-built OpenStack images and they use our metadata system to automatically install your SSH keys on boot (though it can be a bit slow to first boot as it hunts around looking for the first available metadata service).

We’ve also imported the Debian 8 “Jessie” images.

Debian have now standardised these images and we’ve automated the process of importing them, so the latest and greatest Debian releases will be available in a timely fashion in future.

And just like our Ubuntu images, daily updates of the Debian testing images are published from our test account (acc-tqs4c).

FreeBSD 11

FreeBSD 11 was released back in October 2016, so we’re a bit behind on that one but we’ve automated the process now so the latest FreeBSD images will be available straight away in future. We’ve also updated the FreeBSD 10 images.

Our FreeBSD 10 images were originally customised to include cloud-init, which meant your SSH keys got installed automatically. We’ve changed our policy on this to ease the release process, so now only unmodified upstream images are available officially. That means no automatic SSH key installation so you have to login as root on the console (without a password) and run DHCP manually. You can then install your own SSH keys manually.

This is a bit of a backwards step in some ways, but it means the images are exactly as FreeBSD provides upstream (and it means we can automatically import them as soon as they’re available). Work is ongoing to get cloud-init included in the official upstream images, so things should improve and be properly supported.

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