A good rule to follow is to always do a background search before submitting a problem report. Maybe your problem has already been reported; maybe it is being discussed on the mailing lists, or recently was; it may even already be fixed in a newer version than what you are running. You should therefore check all the obvious places before submitting your problem report. For FreeBSD, this means:
The FreeBSD Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) list. The FAQ attempts to provide answers for a wide range of questions, such as those concerning hardware compatibility, user applications, and kernel configuration.
The mailing lists—if you are not subscribed, use the searchable archives on the FreeBSD web site. If your problem has not been discussed on the lists, you might try posting a message about it and waiting a few days to see if someone can spot something you have overlooked.
Optionally, the entire web—use your favorite search engine to locate any references to your problem. You may even get hits from archived mailing lists or newsgroups you did not know of or had not thought to search through.
Next, the searchable FreeBSD PR database (GNATS). Unless your problem is recent or obscure, there is a fair chance it has already been reported.
Most importantly, you should attempt to see if existing documentation in the source base addresses your problem.
For the base FreeBSD code, you should carefully study the contents of the /usr/src/UPDATING file on your system or its latest version at http://svnweb.freebsd.org/base/head/UPDATING?view=log. (This is vital information if you are upgrading from one version to another—especially if you are upgrading to the FreeBSD-CURRENT branch).
However, if the problem is in something that was installed as a part of the FreeBSD Ports Collection, you should refer to /usr/ports/UPDATING (for individual ports) or /usr/ports/CHANGES (for changes that affect the entire Ports Collection). http://svnweb.freebsd.org/ports/head/UPDATING?view=log and http://svnweb.freebsd.org/ports/head/CHANGES?view=log are also available via svnweb.