FreeBSD 6.2. Can I get 128x48 (or similar) console screens?

Alan Mackenzie acm at
Thu Aug 2 12:46:08 UTC 2007

Hi, FreeBSD!

I'm a long time GNU/Linux user, and I'm considering changing over to
FreeBSD.  Why?  To escape the upgrade tread-mill.  Every time a new
Debian release comes out, I say "Oh no, not again!", scarcely looking
forward to the weeks of pain getting it to work properly.  I'm not sure I
prefer the alternative, something like Ubuntu or PCLinux, where you just
shut your eyes, lie back and think of South Africa, not knowing quite
what's getting installed on your PC.  And finding the usable nuggets of
information in the vast swathes of Linux documentation scattered
diffusely over the Internet isn't fun either.

Anyway, back to the point!  I do most of my work in Linux on virtual
console screens, which are set up at 128x48 characters courtesy of the
"framebuffer" thing in the Linux kernel.  Previously, I had used
SVGATextMode, which did much the same.  I just don't much like GUIs,
since they are cluttered up with toolbars, dialog boxes, scrollbars, wine
bars, start bars, crowbars, ...., and tend to steal key sequences which I
want to belong to applications.

I haven't found any like facility in 6.2, so far: I downloaded the
documentation last night (the CD image 6.2-RELEASE-i386-docs.iso) and had
a general browse through it (the English version).  It's nicely written,
but I didn't find what I was looking for.  Then I grepped through it with

    find . -name "*.txt" | xargs grep '[1-9][0-9]*x[1-9][0-9]*'

without finding anything helpful.  80x60 isn't enough!

Is it possible I've missed something relevant?  Or is there some sort of
add-on utility which would give me consoles with (approximately) 128x48?

My hardware is a desktop PC with a 1.2 GHz Athlon and a Matrox G400 AGP
video card.

Thanks in advance for the help!

Alan Mackenzie (Ittersbach, Germany).

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