> > The BIOS clears the screen and loads the boot sector, then nothing.
> I'm not sure exactly what the problem is, but I can say I've
> installed FreeBSD x.y on just about every flavor of Dell hardware
> without much trouble, so it should work for you. Disclaimer: the
> Dimension line is highly variable re: component types, chip versions
> and overall quality, so all bets are off there, even though all the
> pieces are generally "mainstream hardware".
It's an Optiplex GX1, with 192MB/10GB.
> Did you install using the default/suggested disk geometry and slice
> arrangement, or did you try to tune things as the installer went along?
I didn't try to mess with the geometry, but I didn't give FreeBSD the
whole disk -- I intend for it to coexist with Linux and a FAT32 OS.
I also adjusted the subpartitioning (and this seems to be necessary
-- see below).
> Try this: Reinstall, and if prompted about disk geometry problems
> just let the installer do what it wants to. When prompted to choose
> a disk location to install to, choose "A" for "Use Entire Disk", and
> when prompted to slice up that disk area, choose "A" again for "Auto
> Defaults". When prompted for a boot manager, choose to install the
> FreeBSD MBR.
It worked better this time. I suspect the important difference was
that I let it install the FreeBSD MBR (with considerable misgivings,
given the onscreen caution about PC-DOS -- but the FreeBSD boot
manager does seem to boot Windoze without problems).
Unfortunately, it looks as if I'll have to do it *again* because
the default /usr size was quite a bit too small -- even though
sysinstall had over 3GB to start with.
Using the default allocation of that 3GB, and selecting a Developer
configuration (including ports), the install stopped with
Couldn't create directory /usr/compat: No space left on device.
"df" confirms that /usr is full (and the considerably larger /var
is nearly empty):
Filesystem 1K-blocks Used Avail Capacity Mounted on
/dev/ad0s3a 507630 35212 431808 8% /
devfs 1 1 0 100% /dev
/dev/ad0s3e 507630 12 467008 0% /tmp
/dev/ad0s3f 832504 811572 -45668 106% /usr
/dev/ad0s3d 1190350 248 1094874 0% /var
In case it matters, uname -a reports:
FreeBSD gx1 6.1-RELEASE FreeBSD 6.1-RELEASE #0: Sun May 7 04:32:43 UTC 2006
[EMAIL PROTECTED]:/usr/obj/usr/src/sys/GENERIC i386
Evidently I need to make /, /tmp, and /var quite a bit smaller,
so as to enlarge /usr.
> ... if you still have problems describe to the list
> the end result you're trying to achieve by your tuning.
The first goal is to finish the install without running out of
space :) I'd prefer to also arrange for FreeBSD to share the
Linux swap space -- thus freeing up more space for /usr or /home
by eliminating ad0s3b -- rather than leaving the Linux swap
unused when FreeBSD is running. I've found some mentions of
Linux swap partitions in the FreeBSD source code, so I suspect
that this might be possible, but I didn't find any mention in
the docs of how to do it.
The drive currently has three primary partitions (Linux /boot,
FAT32, FreeBSD) and an extended partition containing Linux swap
and Linux root. Partition Commander (commercial) shows the disk
Ptn size ----- type ----- 1st sector # of sectors
P1 7M Linux ext2 0x83 63 16002
P0 2.44G FAT32 0x08 16128 5124672
P2 3.34G Unix 0xA5 5140800 7020405
P3 3.73G Extended 0x0F 12161205 7823655
L0 392M Linux swap 0x82 12161268 803187
L1 3.34G Linux ext2 0x83 12964518 7020342
To answer one forseeable question before it is asked :) I have
quite a bit of Un*x experience, but have not done much system
setup or administration since SunOS 4.1.
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