sysinstall/fdisk drive geometry problem

Perica Veljanovski FreeBSD at
Wed Mar 16 02:06:22 PST 2005


I finally got another hdd for my home box, decided to do a fresh fbsd 
install and I ended up with a disk problem :( :

ide0: 40GB [FreeBSD wannabe (ufs2) 10GB, storage2 (fat32) 30GB]
ide2: 40GB [WinXP (ntfs) 10GB, storage1 (fat32) 30GB]

Now when I begin the installation, and go to the partitioning section, 
fdisk complains about drive geometry and rearranges the drive. Here are 
the settings:

19xxx/16/255 (BIOS)
7xxx/16/63 (dmesg "this is what fbsd complains to")
4xxx/255/63 (the new fdisk rearrangement)

and FreeBSD's fdisk seems to get off on setting the head count to 255!!! 
I tried setting the bios value and fdisk complains again, but for some 
reason when I swap the heads and sectors values it does not. Same goes 
for the dmesg values (drive geometry from the dmesg output).

Since I have no experience with changing drive geometry, nor do I 
understand the bloody thing, I have several issues:

- Will I loose the data on 'storage2' if I change the drive geometry?
- How should I set up the new drive geometry? What setting is 
faster/better? more cyls or more sectors (since fdisk is set to use 255 
- If I backup 'storage2', change drive geometry as fbsd/fdisk suggests 
(or whatever), create a 10g slice and leave the other space 
unpartitioned, will I be able to partition and format the drive to fat32 
from WinXP?

That's about it... any examples would be great!

thanks ahead!

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