WinXP and FreeBSD configuration problems

dmwassman at dmwassman at
Fri Aug 5 20:48:03 GMT 2005

> From: "Ryan Sommers" <ryans at>
> Date: 2005/08/05 Fri PM 01:38:12 EDT
> To: dmwassman at
> CC: freebsd-questions at, 
>  freebsd-hackers at
> Subject: Re: WinXP and FreeBSD configuration problems
> dmwassman at said:
> > ad0s0		NTFS		2G	#Windows Boot
> > ad0s1		FreeBSD	2G	#FreeBSD Boot/Swap
> > ad0s3		FAT		20G	#Windows
> > ad0s4		FreeBSD	298G	#FreeBSD
> >
> ... extra stuff eliminated ...
> Why the miniscule 2gb partitions? Honestly, they are pointless. Second,
> worrying about the performance of boot and swap on a computer with a 320GB
> harddrive? Again pointless. If you are worried about the performance of
> your swap space I would rethink running Windows XP because you have way
> too little RAM. Third, why are you making seperate partitions for boot and
> swap anyway?
> From here on out I'm going to revert to the BSD style where you say
> partition I will now call it a slice.
> FreeBSD can reside on a single slice. The BSD disklabel'er divides the
> FreeBSD slice into partitions, for things like swap, and file-systems.
> My recommendations to you are as follows:
> 1) Don't worry about where things are on the disk. You're complicating the
> hell out of everything and in the end you probably won't notice a
> difference. If you're that worried about performance invest in multiple
> SCSI disks and create multiple RAID arrays optimized for performance.
> 2) Don't worry about making seperate slices (the things you can only make
> 4 of).
> 3) Make a single slice for Windows and install it there. It's good to make
> it the first slice on the disk, but not necessary. Then install FreeBSD to
> another slice. Let FreeBSD overwrite the MBR with the standard boot
> manager.
> This has worked countless times for me. I've always dual booted my laptops
> with FreeBSD and a Windows OS.
> Just me .02. If you'd like feel free to contact me personally and I'd be
> glad to help you get started.
> -- 
> Ryan Sommers
> ryans at

Yeah, I have done exactly what you have suggested several times myself without a problem. I not having problems installing a dual boot system. It was the different config. About the 320GB HD, I don't see it as completely pointless as I am going to use it as a desktop and would like to squeeze as much performance that I can out of it. The key is not to spend any money on it and still get it to work a little faster, so buying a SCSI RAID, although nice, is not really what I had in mind. Why do you?

The miniscule slices (yes, I know unix/linux calls them slices which are divided up into partitions ie ad0 is the drive, ad0s1 is the first slice and ad0s1a is the first partition on that slice) is because I am just trying it out and didn't want to wait forever for windows to format a 100GB hd to have it fail on me later. I am not decided yet on the final config but I am supposing Windows will have at least 100GB (again performance). 

And how do I have way to little RAM? I have 1G RDRAM. How much do you need to run XP?

Thanks for the advice, I am really just messing around to see what I can do and what I can't.


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