problem while installing FreeBSD
jerrymc at clunix.cl.msu.edu
Thu Jul 15 11:38:37 PDT 2004
> It's the same problem when I remove CD. Does it make sense: I am installing
> on the machine which already have Windows 2003 server, and file system NTFS.
> I thought FreeBSD may take care of this file system or it may allow me to do
> partition while installing. Thanks.
Oh. Did you use something to resize the disk slices before you started
the install? FreeBSD will only install [correctly] into empty space
on the disk or wipe out everything and install over the top of the
whole thing. It will not resize the NTFS slice for you.
If you want to install FreeBSD on the machine as a dual-boot system
and keep the preinstalled Win2k stuff running, then you need to
shrink the NTFS down to make room for FreeBSD.
A disk can have up to 4 primary slices (which MS calls 'partitions', by
the way) that are numbered 1..4. Generally if you buy a machine and
it has something MS preinstalled on it, that MS stuff takes all of the
disk and makes it one slice, leaving 3 logically to work with, but no
room for them.
If the system was from some vendor like Dell, they might have also put a
slice with their own diagnostics on the machine, thus using two slices
and leaving only 2 slices that can be created. The diagnostic slice
usually is very small and MS takes the rest of the disk.
Now, if you want to add FreeBSD and still keep the MS (and possibly the
diagnostic) slice[s] you need to shrink the MS slice to make room to
create another slice, using one of the remaining slice numbers. (The
diagnostic slice would be to small to bother with and should just be
If you need to shrink the NTFS slice, then you need something like
Partition Magic which is put out by Power Quest to do that before
you start with the FreeBSD installation. If it was a FAT or FAT32
slice, there are some free utilities that can be used, but the last
I knew, they would not safely handle NTFS. Partition Magic seems
to be the most readily available one that can handle shrinking NTFS.
It is not free, but is pretty cheap. You can usually find it at
such places as Best Buy and Circuit City in the USA and by some
online stores. The price was about $69 US.
When you get it,
- take the CD and make the two floppies according to
the instructions. Forget trying to use it by installing it.
- Then boot from the floppies.
- Look around until you are familiar and clear what you already
have on disk.
- Shrink the NTFS slice from the top - eg don't try to make room
before it, make it at the end of the NTFS slice.
- Have Partition Magic complete its pending operations - just quit
and say yes to its questions about completing them.
- Boot up again from the floppies.
- Create a new primary slice out of the new empty space and make
it an unspecified (unknown) type (or maybe FAT32 might also be OK).
but don't make it any kind of extended slice or other MS sort of
- Again make it complete pending operations.
- At this time you should be able to install FreeBSD in the newly
created slice. When you do, make sure that is what you select
and not the 'use the whole disk' option. It will be slice 2 if
there is only MS already on the disk and slice 3 if there is both
a diagnostic slice and an MS slice. If you also have Linux or
something else there as well, it might be slice 4. If there are
already 4 slices being used on the disk, you can't do it without
getting rid of something first.
- During the part in the FreeBSD install where you choose the slice
and create it, first you should might want to tell it to delete
the new slice and then create it again - it will use only the empty
space. You shouldn't have to do this I don't think, but I have
had trouble in the past if I just tried to accept the slice as it
was created by Partition Magic without having FreeBSD do it too.
Then, make sure you tell it to make the slice bootable by selecting
that slice and choosing that option.
After all this, then you go on to make UNIX partitions within that
slice with the disklabel editor - using the one built in to the
NOTE, that both MS and Partion Magic refer to the slices as partitions.
Just remember that Partition Magic works on slices in FreeBSD parlance.
In FreeBSD, partitions are subdivisions of slices. That can get a
Unfortunately in FreeBSD (at least in 4.xx) there are still a few places
where the word partition is used when it means slice too. Most of the
documentation, and especially the man pages have been cleaned up in 5.xx
but I noticed a place or two in the messages used during the disk building
that still use the terms incorrectly.
Now, all this long harrangue may be moot if you do not want to keep the
MS system available on the disk as a dual boot. In that case, you
just choose 'Use the whole disk for one big FreeBSD slice' option and
let it wipe out everything that is already there. Or, use Partition
Magic to delete the MS slice, but still keep the diagnostic slice if
there is one and you want to keep it.
Or, if you have already managed to wipe out the MS stuff (not a bad idea
actually) but you didn't really mean to, you need to install it back
on the disk before doing the Partition Magic stuff and then the FreeBSD
Maybe this will help.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Steve Bertrand [mailto:iaccounts at ibctech.ca]
> Sent: Thursday, July 15, 2004 11:24 AM
> To: Bawan
> Cc: freebsd-questions at freebsd.org
> Subject: RE: problem while installing FreeBSD
> > I tried with options Start kernel configuration and Skip Kernel
> > Configuration and have same result. Keyboard is not getting "off" even I
> > do
> > cold boot, but system start and same thing repeats.
> It sounds like you still have the CD in the drive...Did you follow the
> instruction to "Remove any removable media from the drive.." before you
> rebooted the machine?
> Remove the CD (if it is in the CD drive) and boot from the hard disk
> > My computer description is:
> > API Multiprocessor PC
> > NVDIA RIVA TNT2 Model display card
> > NIC 3COM (3c905c-TX)
> > Processors:
> > AMD Athlon (tm) MP 1900+
> > AMD Athlon (tm) MP 1900+
> > SCSI and RAID Controller:
> > SX6000(tm) IDE RAID Controller
> > Please let me know if you need anymore hardware information.
> > Note: I am installing from CD, do you think I have to try installing from
> > FTP.
> > Thanks.
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Steve Bertrand [mailto:iaccounts at ibctech.ca]
> > Sent: Thursday, July 15, 2004 10:47 AM
> > To: Bawan
> > Cc: freebsd-questions at freebsd.org
> > Subject: RE: problem while installing FreeBSD
> >> I just started installing it. There is no any extra peripheral connected
> >> to
> >> it. I think I am on first step, I am suppose to get Sysinstall menu
> >> after
> >> reboot, but it gets stuck after saying rebooting...
> > When replying to a post, please ensure you Cc: the list, so that everyone
> > following the thread knows what is happening. It is also beneficial to
> > knew users who 'lurk' but haven't yet posted that may be having similar
> > issues.
> > Now, back to the subject...
> > If you've already installed FBSD, sysinstall should not come back up by
> > default. The machine should boot, then you should be dropped right at the
> > command prompt.
> > If I understand correctly, the last message you see is 'Rebooting...'? If
> > this is so, what happens after a cold boot? Post the messages where it
> > gets stuck.
> > Also, this may be a good time to post your hardware (mobo, NIC, and
> > additional info).
> > Regards,
> > Steve
> >> Thanks.
> >> -----Original Message-----
> >> From: Steve Bertrand [mailto:iaccounts at ibctech.ca]
> >> Sent: Thursday, July 15, 2004 10:07 AM
> >> To: Bawan
> >> Cc: freebsd-questions.org at ibctech.ca
> >> Subject: Re: problem while installing FreeBSD
> >>> I am installing FreeBSD 4.10 from CD. The computer hung up after
> >>> rebooting
> >>> and I am not getting Probe result. Computer and keyboard seems to be
> >>> hung
> >>> up.
> >> Where exactly is it hung? What is the last few lines of output that is
> >> displayed?
> >> Do you have any extra peripherals plugged in (ie. scanner, camera, CF
> >> cards etc)? If so, unplug all unneccisary devices and try to boot again.
> >> Steve
> >>> I don't see any conflicting devices on my computer.
> >>> Can you help me on this?
> >>> Thanks.
> >>> bawan
> >>> _______________________________________________
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