amd64/152179: disklabel's Auto Defaults creates too small / partition on amd64

Markus Hoenicka markus.hoenicka at
Fri Nov 12 22:40:09 UTC 2010

>Number:         152179
>Category:       amd64
>Synopsis:       disklabel's Auto Defaults creates too small / partition on amd64
>Confidential:   no
>Severity:       non-critical
>Priority:       low
>Responsible:    freebsd-amd64
>State:          open
>Class:          change-request
>Submitter-Id:   current-users
>Arrival-Date:   Fri Nov 12 22:40:08 UTC 2010
>Originator:     Markus Hoenicka
>Release:        8.1-RELEASE
FreeBSD wombat.mininet 8.1-RELEASE FreeBSD 8.1-RELEASE #0: Sat Nov 13 20:29:49 CET 2010     root at wombat.mininet:/usr/obj/usr/src/sys/WOMBAT  amd64
The handbook suggests in chap. 2.6.5:

"Users are encouraged to use the automatic partition layout called Auto Defaults by the FreeBSD partition editor."

Doing that results in a / partition of 512MB, although the entire disk is 500GB. This is enough for installing the base system. However, building and installing a custom kernel (a smaller one than GENERIC, fwiw) already overfills the / partition, causing the kernel installation to exit with an error.

I'd recommend to increase the default size of / to 1GB if the total size of the disk permits this. On my box, the current kernel, the old kernel, a good copy of the current kernel, and whatever sysinstall else puts into / take up approx. 775MB.

Boot from an amd64 netinstall CD. Begin a standard installation. Use fdisk to allocate the entire HDD to FreeBSD. Enter disklabel and use the Auto Defaults option to automatically size the partitions.
It is easy to work around by manually sizing the partitions. Still, it might be a better idea to teach disklabel to use more appropriate defaults.


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