Wrong Geometry Disk Problem (Seagate ST3200822A - 200 GB)

Robert Storey y2kbug at ms25.hinet.net
Sun Feb 22 16:37:06 PST 2004

Yes, I too have encountered the geometry bug a number of times on
different machines, and for awhile it put me off to using FreeBSD. Then
I discovered that if you just hit "g" during the partitioning process,
it finds the correct geometry and you can continue with the
installation. At least, this has worked for me.

Nevertheless, I hope the bug will be fixed eventually. It certainly
scares away potential FBSD users.


On Sun, 22 Feb 2004 12:54:42 -0500
"David Markle" <davidmarkle at comcast.net> wrote:

> Hello all,
> I have a problem installing FreeBSD 5.2.1 onto a Seagate Barracuda
> ST3200822A - 200 GB ATA/100 Hard Drive.  Being a bit gun shy from a
> previous geometry problem mis-install where I almost lost some serious
> data, I am reluctant to just "try" things until they work.  So here
> goes...
> Using the Seagate disk tool, I created a 120 GB NTFS partition and a
> 200 MB FAT16 partition.  Installed Windows XP on the 120 GB part.  I
> want to put FreeBSD on the remaining space (~80 GB).
> The Seagate HD utility states the following:
> LBA Sectors are 390,721,968.
> Standard 512 bytes per sector.
> XBIOS Physical (and HD Spec Sheet from manufacture) (what BSD FDISK
> Sees too).
> C    16383
> H    16
> S    63
> C    24321
> H    255
> S    63
> When the FreeBSD CD boots and enters sysinstall, I get the usual drive
> geometry error.  I've extensively searched google for some sort of
> method to calculate the true drive geometry with little success.  
> 1. Is the above BIOS info correct ??  
> 2. Ultimately, do I want the drive geometry to match up with the LBA
> sectors ??
> 3. Can anyone point me towards something that correctly calculates any
> drive's TRUE geometry ??
> Any help is greatly appreciated...
> david markle

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