FreeBSD on disc

Polytropon freebsd at
Tue May 13 00:02:46 UTC 2014

On Mon, 12 May 2014 17:39:07 -0600, Jack Richard wrote:
> Hi, just found your mail.
> Ok, I followed your advice & I got a VERY tough benchmarking done@  Best
> buy. They tested everything & checked any possible defects. 100% clean bill
> of health.

You should do tests yourself, as this is the only reliable
way to make sure that the _proper_ test has been applied and
that the test actually verified what you wanted to check.
I'm saying this with my own individual experience with "big
chain shops" and what they call "IT services". :-/

Many Linux installation CDs and DVDs offer a memory test that
can be started directly from the media (without installing
anything). More targeted things like the UBCD offer muc
more testing functionality. Many things can be tested at
home without spending money to people who go "I see the PC,
therefore, the PC works. That will be $50 please." :-)

> I have followed the FreeBSD handbook, also suggestions from forums and all
> videos for FreeBSD on YouTube exactly as instructed. My problem is when
> there is an example in the terminal, I am looking at the example terminal
> while using my terminal so not to type any error: 'command no found' Or'
> argument needed or insuficient'.

I don't exactly understand: Do the examples cause errors,
for example, a command is not found?

> On the forums I now avoid:
> I went to the first forum found on FreeBSD after installation in your
> browser bookmarks. I needed to find out how to make FreeBSD recognise Wlan0
> as a present device.
> Get a load of this:
> The first response said" go to the babies forum".

Uh, that's _very_ impolite. Do not confuse the attitude of
such individual with the general tone on FreeBSD mailing
lists (as this one).

> The second response was" if you don't know what to do, go back to Windows".

Also impolite and not very helpful, I agree.

> You know, any of the 14 people logged in that day could have simply
> copy/paste the config file that fixes this in an editor & uploaded it for
> me to use, but instead they acted like childish adults.

It's not always possible to copy+paste config files, because
device names may vary (depending on the hardware which is in
actual use).

Currently, I don't have any wireless devices here for reference,
but the laptop I set up a few months ago (with FreeBSD 10
installed via CD #1) was able to get its wireless stuff
working as described (and adapted) here:

This Dell laptop came with a built-in Intel 3945ABG which was
picked up by the wpi driver. All I had to do was to add


to /boot/loader.conf and

	ifconfig_wlan0="WPA DHCP"

to /etc/rc.conf, and the work was done.

> From the handbook, it told me to edit specific config files that doezn't
> even exist. So I had Nano create that file and added whatever I was told,
> but FreeBSD apparently recognised the file with errors and could not use it.

In this case, you have made a mistake. I don't want to sound
impolite, but it is that easy. If a file does not exist, creating
it is the correct solution. File names matter. Letter case matters.
File content matters.

> My wireless is:
> Wlan0
> Realtech
> ===> rtl8188/8101
> I believe the firmware needed for wireless is rtl8187.

This device seems to be compatible to the rsu driver.

And it seems that is is a special case of WLAN - it's USB driven.
It also seems to be a bit... picky. :-)

You need to add


to /boot/loder.conf. The see if one of the EXAMPLES listed in
the manpage can help. You can even copy them from the local
manpage ("man rsu") to a root console using the mouse, so you
don't have to type it.

> Cannot port it to the system if the USB ports haven't been configured.

No chance to use wired networking, at least for installing
the system? WLAN usually is soooo slooooow, especially when
you're going to install software. :-)

Using USB storage to transfer data from system A (network
connection) to system B (no network connection) is a bit
complicated, but should also work in worst case. Again, there
are many factors involved that can cause trouble.

> Sorry. I meant that all the other systems take care to make sure the
> installer probes hardware very tough-  firmware needed and/Or packages
> needed to make everything can be downloaded from a server thru the
> installation.

Yes, this is a common approach. The drivers packaged with
FreeBSD usually contain everything that is needed. There are
additional drivers available in the ports collection, especially
for graphics hardware (related to X), but also kernel modules
for use with other hardware or software.

> This is how out-of-the-Good is not impossible. The iso/installer doesn't
> need to store more than normal, it can retrieve other software/firmware
> during installation-  not leave the admin looking stupid after installation.

It can only access what's available on the installtion media,
and in case of a CD this amount is limited to approx. 600 MB.
If there's no networking at installation time, you need to
fetch things afterwards. The installer is responsible for
installing the _operating system_ in the first place.

> I will check out the addresses you provided.
> Thanks for your time. I don't mean to seem ungrateful-  I really appreciate
> you. :-)

You're welcome. I hope my notes can be of a little help.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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