Newbie needs help setting up rackmount server

Jerahmy Pocott quakenet1 at
Fri Aug 12 00:27:15 GMT 2005

On 12/08/2005, at 6:23 AM, Maude User wrote:

> Hello --
> I recently installed FreeBSD 5.3 on my laptop and now I want to  
> install it
> onto a rackmount server (hardware specs below).
> I hate to ask a silly question but here goes: Do I need to get a  
> drive (and keyboard and monitor) for the server in order to install  
> FreeBSD...
> or is there some way I can install onto the rackmount server from  
> the laptop?
> (There's no CD-ROM on the rackmount server, but the laptop has a CD- 
> RW/DVD+-RW.)

It is possible your BIOS will actually direct display to a serial  
console.. I'm not sure if
yours does, so if it doesn't you will probably need a keyboard/ 
monitor if you want
to configure your BIOS, of course if you are happy with the defaults  
you should be
able to do it all with a laptop or other system..

You will want to set your boot floppies to use the serial console,  
which you can
read about doing here: 

You will need a null modem cable to do this, also you will need to  
make sure the
cable is plugged into si0 on the server (com1).. I noticed that the  
server has an LCD
display which is possibly driven via a serial port, this could occupy  
si0 already.. Getting
it to boot the serial console on a different port to si0 is more  
complex, so hopefully
you won't have to..

 From this point on the laptop will act like the keyboard and monitor  
for the system and
you can install.. I would recommend using an NFS mount on your local  
network to install
the files from since it would be the fastest (without installing a CD  
drive), otherwise use
ftp, which will be pretty slow (depending on your internet  
connection) but the only other
viable method for you really..

Let me know if you have any queries, it is usually pretty straight  
forward though =)

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