Relapse to 80x25 text mode from X

Felix Friedlander felixphew0 at
Tue Sep 20 21:43:16 UTC 2016

> On 21 Sep. 2016, at 00:29, Ian Smith <smithi at> wrote:
> In freebsd-questions Digest, Vol 641, Issue 3, Message: 15
> On Tue, 13 Sep 2016 23:59:43 +0200 Polytropon <freebsd at> wrote:
>> When I initially installed X on my "new" Lenovo Thinkpad R61i,
>> after leaving X (or after switching to text mode with the
>> key combination Ctrl+Alt+PF1) the screen would still show
>> the X image, leaving me "blind" at the console. Changing
>> the sc driver to vt solved that problem, but opened a new
>> one: The text mode font is tiny and unreadable.
>> What is the preferred way of keeping the console in 80x25
>> mode _and_ being able to switch from/to X?
>> My /boot/loader.conf currently contains:
>> 	kern.vty=vt
>> 	kern.vt.fb.default_mode="1280x800"
>> 	hw.vga.textmode=1
>> 	i915kms_load="YES"
>> In /etc/rc.conf I have tried
>> 	allscreens_flags="-f gallant"
>> as suggested somewhere, but that just slightly increases
>> the font size (still more than 80x25) and looks ugly.
>> The laptop contains an Intel Mobile GM965/GL960 GPU. The
>> screen has a physical size of 1280 x 800 pixels.
>> In other words: Is it possible to relapse to the default
>> behaviour of 80x25 sc and X that has worked for decades?
>> If yes, how?
> I don't know but I'd like to, and I don't know but I'd like to, too.
> Hugely behind, I was just quickly scanning this month's archives at
> when I noticed this poor lonely little message, unreplied to.
> And of course searching that page for 'Poly' shows 14 messages tonight 
> from you helping others, as usual, plus this one.
> I still use sc on two older laptops, but saw quite a few messages about 
> this, perhaps on stable@, but didn't wind up grokking a clear solution 
> or I'd have clipped it.
> So this is just a dreaded 'bump' .. someone/s must know all about this?
> cheers, Ian

In vt(4), rows and columns are determined by font size. The default font (I think) is 8x16, so your terminal should therefore be 160x50.

I don’t know why you would want an 80x25 console on a 1280x800 screen, but it is a valid request, so:

1280 / 80 = 16
800 / 25 = 32

Looks like you want a 16x32 font. You’re in luck: from FreeBSD 11, there’s a font `vgarom-16x32' that should be what you’re looking for. Load it with `vidfont' or `vidctl -f'. If you’re still on FreeBSD-10, you’ll have to chase up a copy from somewhere, or compile it from the HEX file at (compile it with `vtfontcvt' - the finished file goes in /usr/share/vt/fonts).

I hope this helps - and I know vt sometimes has an odd way of doing things. I like it, but not everyone does.

Felix Friedlander <felixphew0 at>

-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: smime.p7s
Type: application/pkcs7-signature
Size: 3441 bytes
Desc: not available
URL: <>

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list