docs/167429: geli(8) needs to mention unencrypted /etc/fstab requirement for encrypted root

Robert Simmons rsimmons0 at
Sun Apr 29 17:00:27 UTC 2012

>Number:         167429
>Category:       docs
>Synopsis:       geli(8) needs to mention unencrypted /etc/fstab requirement for encrypted root
>Confidential:   no
>Severity:       non-critical
>Priority:       low
>Responsible:    freebsd-doc
>State:          open
>Class:          doc-bug
>Submitter-Id:   current-users
>Arrival-Date:   Sun Apr 29 17:00:26 UTC 2012
>Originator:     Robert Simmons
>Release:        9.0-RELEASE
FreeBSD test 9.0-RELEASE FreeBSD 9.0-RELEASE #0: Tue Jan  3 07:46:30 UTC 2012  root at  amd64
If you want to boot from an encrypted root partition that is encrypted using geli, you must boot from an unencrypted partition that includes a /boot/ directory and /etc/fstab.

The geli(8) man page mentions the /boot/ directory requirement, but omits the /etc/fstab
Install FreeBSD onto a geli encrypted provider that was created with "geli init -b"

Then copy only the /boot/ directory to the unencrypted area that you will use to boot.

Boot the machine, and see the errors where it can't find the / partition to decrypt.
I have attached a patch that mentions the /etc/fstab requirement in the geli(8) man page.

Patch attached with submission follows:

--- src/sbin/geom/class/eli/geli.8	2012-04-28 16:23:13.000000000 -0400
+++	2012-04-29 12:32:31.000000000 -0400
@@ -268,7 +268,9 @@
 This makes it possible to use an encrypted root partition.
 One will still need bootable unencrypted storage with a
 .Pa /boot/
-directory, which can be a CD-ROM disc or USB pen-drive, that can be removed
+directory and
+.Pa /etc/fstab .
+This can be a CD-ROM disc or USB pen-drive which can be removed
 after boot.
 .It Fl B Ar backupfile
 File name to use for metadata backup instead of the default


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