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Old 02-01-2014, 07:37 PM   #1
chexmix
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FreeBSD installer woes


Hi all --

I'm trying to install FreeBSD 10.0 on a netbook and must admit the installer is kinda confusing me.

For what it is worth, I ran FreeBSD on dual- and triple- boot systems years ago and recall being quite impressed with it. I've also successfully installed and used NetBSD and OpenBSD before ... so I'm not completely wet behind the ears w/*BSD installation.

Here's what is what I have before me. I'm in the Partition Editor, in the "Create Partitions for FreeBSD" dialogue. The layout is as follows:

Code:
ada0        466 GB   MBR
  ada0s1    202 GB   linux-data
  ada0s2    3.8 GB   EBR
    ada0s5  3.8 GB   linux-swap
  ada0s3    195 GB   linux-data
  ada0s4    65 GB    BSD
... what I can't seem to get the installer to do is let me address ada0s4 only, and slice it up into freebsd-boot, freebsd-ufs and freebsd-swap. I can delete ada0s4 okay, but if I pick "Modify" the "Edit Partition" dialogue that pops up will allow me to change type to 'freebsd-boot', but will not allow me to reset the 65 GB size. So if I hit return without entering a mountpoint, the ada0s4 line changes to

Code:
  ada0s4    65 GB    (none)
... then if I try "Modify" again, I get the dialogue that offers "Partition Schemes." The handbook suggests GPT, so I highlight that, and hit return. I get the following somewhat cryptic message:

Code:
Device not
configured.
provider
This is EXACTLY what it says.

Using the 'beginner recommended' Partitioning Tool does not appear to be an option either, again because the installer can't seem to figure out that I already have a BSD partition I'd like to use. It presents me with a choice of 'Entire Disk' or 'Partition'. I know I don't want to use the entire disk, so I choose partition. Then up pops a dialogue asking me to create a new freebsd partition, but it only allots 7190KB to it, which I am guessing is the amount of free space left on the hard disk.

... could someone suggest what the best course of action is here? I'm considering throwing in the towel and giving Dragonfly another shot.

Thanks, and sorry if this is whiny,

/Glenn
 
Old 02-02-2014, 09:53 AM   #2
hitest
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Hey Glenn,

Like you I'm a huge Slackware and OpenBSD fan; I love dual booting those OSs. As of FreeBSD 9.0 it has become increasingly difficult to dual boot FreeBSD with other operating systems (I did have a slackware/freebsd 8.0 dual boot a few years ago). At the moment I run FreeBSD 10.0 in Virtualbox on my Slackware-current work station. It may be possible to set-up a dual boot using GRUB, but, I have not done it. Best of luck, man.
Perhaps another FreeBSD user can help you.

Last edited by hitest; 02-02-2014 at 09:54 AM.
 
Old 02-02-2014, 10:09 AM   #3
chexmix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hitest View Post
Hey Glenn,

Like you I'm a huge Slackware and OpenBSD fan; I love dual booting those OSs. As of FreeBSD 9.0 it has become increasingly difficult to dual boot FreeBSD with other operating systems (I did have a slackware/freebsd 8.0 dual boot a few years ago). At the moment I run FreeBSD 10.0 in Virtualbox on my Slackware-current work station. It may be possible to set-up a dual boot using GRUB, but, I have not done it. Best of luck, man.
Perhaps another FreeBSD user can help you.
Thanks! The FreeBSD installer seems (to me) to have some issues ... IIRC the OpenBSD installer accurately "sees" if you have a BSD partition/slice already & CLEARLY presents the option of using that slice only as an installation target. Seems like the same behavior would be desirable here. I wonder what motivation would be behind making dual-booting more difficult ...?

So far I've had no luck with Dragonfly ... I'm tempted to throw in the towel (on this Netbook anyway -- BSDs don't appear to like the hardware much, especially the wireless) and install Arch. :/

/G
 
Old 02-02-2014, 10:13 AM   #4
hitest
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by chexmix View Post
So far I've had no luck with Dragonfly ... I'm tempted to throw in the towel (on this Netbook anyway -- BSDs don't appear to like the hardware much, especially the wireless) and install Arch. :/
/G
Yep. Like you I also gave FreeBSD and OpenBSD a try on my 4 year old Acer Aspire netbook. No dice. It is happily now running Slackware 14.1.
 
Old 02-02-2014, 10:22 AM   #5
ibmercurial
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https://forums.freebsd.org/viewtopic.php?&t=42073
Installing inside a nested (extended partition) might be the issue. FreeBSD wants a primary partition. "ada0s4 65 GB BSD" should serve as a sort of nested partition scheme for a FreeBSd installation. Much like an extended partition. ada0s4 would be the "main" bsd slice and what ever you wanted after that would cascade from ada0s4. I might be wrong.
 
Old 02-02-2014, 01:08 PM   #6
chexmix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ibmercurial View Post
https://forums.freebsd.org/viewtopic.php?&t=42073
Installing inside a nested (extended partition) might be the issue. FreeBSD wants a primary partition. "ada0s4 65 GB BSD" should serve as a sort of nested partition scheme for a FreeBSd installation. Much like an extended partition. ada0s4 would be the "main" bsd slice and what ever you wanted after that would cascade from ada0s4. I might be wrong.
I am pretty sure you are right. My problem is that I can't seem to figure out how to tell the FreeBSD installer to take ada0s4 and chop it up/nest things inside it. The option to do so, if present at all, seems to be buried in some non-intuitive place/menu. Or I'm just addled, which I'm always willing to admit as a possibility! ;^)

/G
 
Old 02-02-2014, 01:30 PM   #7
ibmercurial
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sda1 Primary ntfs 26320.31 *
sda2 Primary swap 526.39 *
sda3 Primary ufs 25498.41 *
sda4 Boot Primary reiserfs [gentoo] 27654.91 *
I have a windows xp partition, linux/freebsd swap, FreeBSD, and Gentoo partiton.
This is of course cfdisk in linux. You might have carved your disk up without the extended partition, since You could have easily gotten away with using 4 primary partitons
in your partition scheme.
title Windows on (/dev/sda1)
rootnoverify (hd0,0)
makeactive
chainloader +1
# Other bootable partition config ends
# Linux bootable partition config begins
title FreeBSD-10amd64 (/dev/sda3)
root (hd0,2,a)
kernel /boot/loader
# Linux bootable partition config ends
# Linux bootable partition config begins
title gent on (/dev/sda4)
root (hd0,3)
kernel /boot/slakfig init=/usr/lib/systemd/systemd root=/dev/sda4 ro vga=normal
"slakfig" what I named the Gentoo kernel, since I "borrowed" the kernel config fromm a previous Slackware install. I love Slackware.. have fun
 
Old 02-02-2014, 04:13 PM   #8
chexmix
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Thanks, but I think (maybe I'm wrong) that I have the partitions set up correctly. I don't know why the Linux swap is inside an extended partition, but the other three *are primary*.

Since it looks as though no BSD supports the Realtek wireless on my netbook, I think I'll just install Arch. Disappointing. Thanks for your help!
 
Old 02-07-2014, 02:51 AM   #9
ReaperX7
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If you are running only Linux and BSD try using GPT partitioning rather than MBR.
 
  


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