Tradeshow Crowd Pullers

Joshua Oreman oremanj at
Tue Aug 12 16:30:35 PDT 2003

On Tue, Aug 12, 2003 at 11:53:29PM +0100 or thereabouts, Claire Q'vant wrote:
> We're going to have a booth at a trade show in a few
> months, and we'd like to have a few machines running
> FreeBSD for people to play with.
> But, as a crowd puller, it'd be nice to have a
> graphical bootup sequence.
> I know it's not the 'done thing' for a server OS, but
> for a workstation OS, it's a very nice touch.
> Does anyone know of any code to do it?
> Any projects already started?
> I'm aware it'll have to be a kernel module, as it's
> the only thing running at that stage.
> I don't know if VGL and VESA will do it - it handles
> the 'splash' modules ok, but this module would require
> sysctl's to tell the module to display the next icon,
> e.g.
> Starting Network (greyed out icon)
> Network Started ok (Coloured icon)
> Network Start Failed (Coloured with cross through it)
> Has anyone seen anything like this?
> Is anyone keen?

Yep, I have, twice, on Linux. :-(

1) The Linux bootsplash project ( IIRC) can do like FBSD ``splash''
   module but with a progress bar. Also gives VCs a background pic.
2) Mandrake Linux does something a LOT like this. It doesn't cover up the kernel messages
   as it's not a kernel module; it starts as soon as the root fs is mounted.

   Basically, it involves starting up a minimal X server.

   Yes, on Linux X can run on the framebuffer (SC_PIXEL_MODE). Not sure whether it can on
   FBSD too.

   Then a custom X program was run to do exactly what you're talking about.

You may be able to use a combination of splash.ko and a custom X program to do what you want.

-- Josh

> Claire
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