FreeBSD Installation Problems

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at
Wed Mar 26 11:07:58 PST 2003

(freebsd-hackers@ removed from CC: this is definitely -questions

On Wed, Mar 26, 2003 at 05:53:04PM +0800, Sukhbinder Singh wrote:

>         I am trying to install FreeBSD into my personal computer, however I am receiving error messages during the course of my installation. When I am trying to install using the floppy method at the final prompt where the istallation program requests me to put in floppy disk in drive a and press enter. After putting in the disk and pressing enter I receive a warning or error message like "Error mounting floppy fd0 (/dev/fd0) on /dist: Invalid argument". 

Floppy disks are not the most reliable of media.  It's quite possible
you've got a bad disk there.  Try again with a different disk,
preferably a brand new never used before one.

When you say using the "floppy method" do you mean you're just using
the floppies to boot from, and that you're going to download the bulk
of the distribution by other means, or that you're really going to use
a whole stack of floppies to copy in the entire distribution onto your
system?  If it's the latter, then I admire your dedication, but
question your thinking. You will be sorely tried by that process.
>           When I try to install it via FTP, at the end of the installation procedure I receive a message like "Couldn't open FTP connection to undefined error : 0"   Can someone please help me troubleshoot this problems which I had been facing with the installation of FreeBSD into my personal computer.

Hmmm... You don't exactly give us much detail to work on here.  Some
sort of indication of exactly what version of FreeBSD you're trying to
install and a description of your hardware with as much detail as you
can find: ideally something like this:

    1 AMD Athlon +1600 CPU
    ASUS A7V266 Motherboard
    512Mb PC2100 Ram
    Tekram DC-390U3W SCSI controller
    IBM 07N3200 U160 HDD (36Gb)
    Samsung SC1200TX NIC
    ELSA External 56k Fun Modem 

but do the best you can if you don't know that sort of detail.  The
output of 'dmesg' or 'pciconf -l -v' can help clarify things if

How, exactly, are you trying to make a connection to the net in order
to get FTP access to the FreeBSD servers?  For an FTP install you've
either got to connect by a LAN which has routes out to the internet
--- for instance, if you have an ADSL router or another machine with a
modem and dial-up capability which you can route traffic through ---
or you have to have a directly attached modem on your system.

I suspect that this isn't applicable to your situation, but just to
cover all bases: If you're connecting via a local network, then skip
over all of the instructions about configuring PPP, and go directly to
the screens for setting up an ethernet card.  It works nicely by DHCP
if that's available in your environment, otherwise, you'll have to
obtain an IP number, the local netmask and the IP numbers of your
local DNS servers and of the default gateway to the internet.

Now, if I guess correctly, you're trying to use a 56k dialup via an
analog modem.  First question is: what sort of modem are you using?
If it's an external modem that plugs into one of the serial ports or
one of the older sorts of internal modem which appear to the system
like another serial port --- ie. one with a real UART --- then you're
all set to go.  If it's an external device that plugs into a USB port,
then I can't really say if it's going to work or not.  If it's an
internal "winmodem" type as supplied with most commodity PCs purchased
in the last few years, then you are out of luck as far as *installing*
FreeBSD that way.  Once you have FreeBSD installed you may be able to
install the comms/ltmdm port which provides drivers for a number of
devices based on the Lucent LT chipset, but you'ld have to beg, borrow
or steal an alternative modem to do the installation first.

Can you boot into another operating system to verify that the modem
functions correctly?

Having established that you have a working and compatible modem, then
you need some sort of dial-up account at an ISP.  It's a kind of dumb
thing to fall over on, but it happens: double check that you're using
the correct account name and password for the ISP.  You should be able
to hit 'Alt F2' from the main sysinstall screen to see some much more
detailed debugging output: check that for clues as to why you can't
get a connection.



Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                       26 The Paddocks
                                                      Savill Way
PGP:         Marlow
Tel: +44 1628 476614                                  Bucks., SL7 1TH UK
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 187 bytes
Desc: not available
Url :

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list