Can't load kernel, trying to install on a Dell R900.

Nicky Bulthuis nicky at
Thu Feb 28 14:49:03 UTC 2008

Mel wrote:
> On Thursday 28 February 2008 12:51:10 Nicky Bulthuis wrote:
>> I'm having 'a lot' of troubles installing FreeBSD on a new Dell R900
>> from CD. Somehow it just doesn't seem to be able to load the kernel from
>> the CD.
>> The machine is turned on with the CD is inserted.
>> It shows the message of the BTX Loader and then it stops with an error
>> message:
>> can't load 'kernel'
>> At first i figured my CD was broken, so i used a different image. Still
>> no dice, same error message. I've tried 6.2 (amd64), 6.3 (amd64) and 7.0
>> (amd64), sadly none of them work.
>> I've disabled the internal CDrom drive and used an external USB CDrom
>> drive. I figured, perhaps the internal cdrom drive is incompatible with
>> FreeBSD. Sadly that also didn't work.
>> Output from lsdev:
>> cd devices:
>>     cd0: Device 0x0
>> disk devices:
>>     disk0: Bios drive C:
> What does ls / give? And ls -l /boot/kernel/kernel?
> Been a while since I loaded a kernel manually, but I think:
> boot -v cd0:/boot/kernel/kernel
> should do the trick.
> Does any of that give more hints to what might be the problem?
Well, i've made some progress with your suggestions.

First things first, i had already updated the BIOS from version 1.1.0 to 
1.1.3, the latest i could find on the Dell website.

"ls /" and "ls -l /boot/kernel/kernel" both give me 'bad path'.
"boot -v cd0:/boot/kernel/kernel" gives two messages, "can't boot 
kernel" followed by "no bootable kernel"

Using 'ls cd0:/' gives me the cdrom file listing, so that works. I can 
browse the cdrom directory structure.

I've done 'load cd0:/boot/kernel/kernel', which actually loads the kernel.
I get the 'text[memadres] data[memaddress] syms[memaddress]' messages, 
and 'lsmod' shows me a loaded kernel.

however, running 'boot -v' doesn't seem to work. It shows me the 
progressbar "|-/\", make a full circle, but stops right after.


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