Common installation errors?

Damien Fleuriot ml at
Fri May 20 10:38:30 UTC 2016

On 20 May 2016 at 00:11, Eric Dynamic <ecsd at> wrote:

> I'm trying to install 10.3 amd64.
> When I get to the "allocate disk space" and say "auto (guided)" using a
> Seagate 250 GB disk that
> was previously used for Ubuntu, each choice GPT, BSD, MBR fails with the
> same error message
> something like "bad geom: ada0".
> Either a different disk will work, or I need to step back to 10.1, so I
> try a Seagate 80 GB disk (also
> with an Ubuntu system using the whole disk) and this time despite some
> complaint that flies by,
> the disk space allocation works and I can proceed with the install.
> I cannot find any reference to "bad geom: <device name>" in a few cursory
> searches, but the place
> to discuss such an error message is in the installation manual, which is
> currently written mostly
> as if most steps will not go wrong. Surely whatever complaint the system
> had about "bad geom"
> was something trivial, or hopefully correctable, since presumably BSD
> supports 250 GB .. 3 or 5 TB
> disks by now; 10.1 supported install on a 1 TB drive.
> May I suggest adding documentation for such common "gotchas" to the
> installation manual? Then
> the installation manual is a one-stop shop.
> Meanwhile, if anyone can tell me what "bad geom: ada0" meant, I'd
> appreciate it, thanks.
> -ecsd (Eric Dynamic)
> Berkeley

I would assume it means gpart didn't like your drive or its existing

Would you, perchance, be able to drop to a shell and issue the following ?
# gpart show

Here is example output from one of my firewalls :
root at pf1-gs:~ # gpart show
=>       34  142081981  mfid0  GPT  (68G)
         34        128      1  freebsd-boot  (64K)
        162    4194304      2  freebsd-swap  (2.0G)
    4194466  137887549      3  freebsd-ufs  (66G)

You may then remove existing partitions (DATA DESTROYED) :
gpart delete -i <partition_number> <drivename>

For example :
gpart delete -i 3 ada0

Once you have removed all partitions, you can destroy the existing GEOM :
gpart destroy ada0

I understand this doesn't fix the installer issue, but at least it should
let you move forward :)

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