Installing FreeBSD on Laptop

Gunther, Dean (Dean) dgunther at
Mon Jun 2 07:00:13 PDT 2003

I have a Midwest Micro Elite Soundbook laptop that I would like to install FreeBSD on. 
The box is a Pentium 75, with 40MB of RAM and a 2GB hard drive so it should be doable.
I started out to try an load from an ftp site using the 3COM 3C589D PCMCIA card but was
unable to figure out how to get FreeBSD to recognize the card.  I have a BackPack CD-ROM
drive (parallel port connection) that I use with the laptop, but I was unable to find any information
on whether or not I could get it to work to install FreeBSD.

I created the boot floppies and was able to get the install shell going but without any access to
the install files I was at a loss how to proceed.  I guess if I really wanted to I could try a floppy install,
but I was hoping for something a little quicker.  At home I have a cable modem and a linksys NAT
box providing internet access so ftp does not sound like a bad way to go, but I wasn't able to figure 
out how to get the system to recognize the PCMCIA card.  If there is a way to use the BP CD-ROM 
that would be even better, but again I couldn't find any reference to backpack's or even parallel 
drives so that has not been a fruitful avenue to look down.

I am still kind of new to FreeBSD and UNIX, but I am trying to learn.  I thought that installing 
FreeBSD on my old laptop would be a way to keep it somewhat useful if only for web-surfing and/
or playing around with some scripting work I would like to try to do.

Any help or ideas would be greatly appreciated.


Dean M. Gunther
Lucent LWS

dgunther at

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