SOLVED - 5.2.1-RELEASE boot problem

Bob Johnson bob89 at
Mon Apr 12 20:55:45 PDT 2004

On Monday 12 April 2004 08:21 pm, 10,000 Screaming Monkeys <"10,000 
Screaming Monkeys" <bsd at>> wrote:
> Nobody has been able to help me here or elsewhere, but I did discover
> one strange thing that seems to have taken care of things.
> The way I usually build my systems, since they're strictly FreeBSD
> machines, is to "dangerously dedicate" the drive. When the system was
> installed that way, regardless of what I did in /boot.config,
> regardless of which IDE channel I had the drive connected to, and
> regardless of BIOS settings tweaked to hell and back, it refused to
> boot from the IDE drive and the boot loader would default to
> 22:fd(22,a)/kernel.
> On a lark, I reinstalled the system using a "true" partition and the
> FreeBSD bootmgr. When I rebooted the system after the install, it
> prompted me for the partition to boot (F1 for FreeBSD) and booted
> successfully without any trickery.
> When I installed the system yet another time using a "true" partition
> and chose the "standard" option (for just a standard MBR, rather than
> a boot manager or "none"), the system booted completely normally
> without any intervention on my part at all.
> So, while I have no explanation for why it acts differently depending
> on whether or not the drive is DD'd or given a "valid" partition,
> that's what fixed the problem for me. I thought I would make a
> follow-up post just in case this ever happens to anybody else and
> they need some place to start.
> - Jamie
> On 04/09, 10,000 Screaming Monkeys rearranged the electrons to read:

To reiterate for anyone tempted to use "dangerously dedicated" mode: it 
has that name for a reason.  It is not only incompatible with other 
operating systems, but it is incompatible with some BIOSes, I suppose 
because they see it as an unformated disk.  Some computers refuse to 
even attempt to boot from a DD disk.  It would appear that yours is 
willing to attempt to boot, but then passes bogus information to the 
FreeBSD boot loader.

- Bob

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