Installing FreeBSD ver. 8.2

leeoliveshackelford at leeoliveshackelford at
Sat Jan 7 23:05:58 UTC 2012

Greetings, dear FreeBSD enthusiast.  I am tearing my hair out trying to get FreeBSD 8.2 operating on my Hewlett-Packard xw4400 workstation.  I am a newcomer to FreeBSD.  This workstation is used by several different people.  Normally, only one of them is logged in at any given time.  I have several questions and concerns.

(1)  Does anyone know how to get FreeBSD to read the motherboard name?  This name, on an xw4400, starts with "HP" followed by a eleven digits, and is given in Windows XP as "Full Computer Name" on the "Computer Name" tab of the "System Properties" window.  Among other purposes, this name is used by Novell network operating system to distinguish hosts on a subnet.

(2)  I cannot get the "find" command to locate files that I believe were installed at the time of sysinstall.  If I understand the Handbook correctly, when one runs "find" from the "/" directory, it is supposed to inspect all directories and subdirectories of all partitions, which it is not doing.  What concept am I missing here?

(3)  I thought that I would obtain a better understanding of the file system by running "man heir."  This command runs fine under "sh."  When I switch to my preferred shell, which is "bash," I type, and receive echo on the screen, "man hei."  As soon as I depress "r," the entire previously entered command echos to the screen, starting where the "r" should have appeared.  In checking the bash manual, it says that this response is correct for "control-r."  I could not find "non-shift-r" to be called out as a command.  Am I doing something wrong?  Is this a hardware bug?  Is this a software bug?  Is there something that needs to be defined or undefined in a configuration file?  

(4)  Not having very good luck with the "find" command, I thought I would try to use the "locate" command.  To use this command, one must create a database.  On, I read that this database could be constructed by running the command "#usr/libexec/locate.updatedb."  I entered "cd" to get to this directory,  I entered "ls -lt" to read the directory and to verify that it contained a file named "locate.updatedb," which it did.  But when I entered "locate.updatedb" at the command prompt, I received the response "command not found."  Why can the command shell not find the command when "ls" clearly indicates it to exist in the current directory?  How do I, as a user, distinguish an executable binary file from a data file?  FreeBSD does not seem to use file extension labels for this purpose.

(5)  What device driver must be installed for the sound board to be able to receive a m.i.d.i. over u.s.b. signal?  This signal would be generated by a musician's keyboard, and would control a music synthesizer application, to be installed.  I could find no mention of this topic in the Handbook.

(6)  In the book "Absolute FreeBSD" by Urban and Tiemann, I found a two line command to cause the bash prompt to display the file path and current directory.  Unfortunately, the text is quite unclear as to the name of the file to which these line are to be added, or the directory in which this file is located.  I assume  that somewhere there must be login configuration files, bearing each user's name, that give his or her shell configuration instructions.  What are the names of such files, and where are they located?

Any and all comments and instruction on these points are sorely needed and will be much appreciated.  Special thanks to those who responded to my previous message on this general topic.  Sincerely, --Lee

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