Problems setting up dual-boot

Jud judmarc at
Fri Apr 25 16:22:24 PDT 2003

On 25 Apr 2003 15:29:48 -0400, Adam <blueeskimo at> wrote:

> On Fri, 2003-04-25 at 13:28, Adam wrote:
>> Someone suggested modifying the Windows boot.ini file to do it, but I'm
>> not really sure how to do that either.
> Alright, I figured out how to do this. I copied /boot/boot1 to a floppy,
> put it on my Windows partition as boot.bsd, then added
> c:boot.bsd="FreeBSD" to my boot.ini ..
> I get two options when starting my computer now, but selecting the
> FreeBSD option just causes the machine to reboot.
> Are all these problems just because the OS's are on different physical
> disks? Could it be because I added the 1024mb swap partition before /
> when I was going through the partition editor?
> I'm really at a loss here ..

There's an FAQ about this on the FreeBSD web site, but I'm not exactly sure 
of how to follow the instructions where Windows and FreeBSD are on 
different disks.  It would have told you (small comfort) that the 
boot1=boot.bsd method is only for Win and FBSD on the same disk.

BTW, what do you mean by 1024mb swap partition "before" root?  Is swap or / 
on the "a" partition of your FreeBSD slice?  FreeBSD expects to see / in 
the "a" partition, so change that if it's currently otherwise.

OK, so how to dual boot?  Some alternatives:

- If you don't care about your Windows partition being called '???', 
install the FreeBSD bootloader on both hard drives and you're ready to go.

- Install FreeBSD, reboot into it, then install grub from 
/usr/ports/sysutils/grub.  (First, read the online grub documentation 

- If you have some spare room (could be as little as 105mb) on your Win 
drive, use BootItNG, a shareware (30-day trial) utility with a nice easy 
graphical interface, to shrink your Win partition(s) by enough to put your 
/ partition on the Win drive, leaving the rest of your FreeBSD partitions 
on the other drive.  (I like to make root about 256mb, though that's 
strictly seat-of-the-pants - don't know if a / of more than 100mb serves 
any purpose.)  Then just do the boot1=boot.bsd thing, and since your Win 
and FreeBSD boot partitions are both on the same drive, it'll work.

- If you have room on your FreeBSD drive, install Windows in 1gb or 
slightly more.  Then do boot1=boot.bsd to boot FreeBSD.  You will have to 
read up on the language used in the Win boot.ini file so you can modify it 
to boot your main Win installation on the other drive.



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