After spending quite some time trying to get 5.0-RELEASE installed on a Dell PowerEdge machine, it seems that all is now working quite well. Being that these machines are somewhat common, I'll share what was halting my installation.
What model? There are quite a few PowerEdges out there. I installed 5.0 (actually, I built the official 5.0 release) on a PowerEdge.
These machines come with integrated video, an ATI RageXL, which is rather useless for anything other than console mode. I installed an ATI All- In-Wonder VE so that I could get somewhat decent performance out of X. The problem manifested when the kernel probed the machines hardware, causing an "NMI ISA 30, EISA ff", and locking up the machine solid. After I began pulling memory and expansion cards from the system, the error went away when I removed the ATI AIW card. I reinstalled the card and attempted to find how to correct this. My only solution to this issue was to interrupt the boot process and use the following command:
set hw.pci.enable_io_modes = 0
This prevented any further halts.
As a wild guess, what happenes when you remove the EISA device from the kernel?
My first question is as follows: is /boot/device.hints the most proper place to stick this? Also, are there any other possible solutions to this issue?
/boot/loader.conf is the best place for this.
My main drives are SCSI, and I have one CD-RW and one DVD-R on the secondary IDE controller. The kernel detects the drives just fine, but defaults them both down to PIO4. The drives are fully UDMA2 capable. I am able to set the drives to use UDMA2 via atacontrol without issue. However, how would one make this more permanent, such that I wouldn't have to use atacontrol everytime I boot the machine?
There have been problems in the past with ATAPI/IDE drives that claim DMA capabilities but instead corrupt data and/or cause panics. Forcing everything to PIO is the easiest way to achieve maximum compatibility. The ata manual page describes what to put into /boot/loader.conf to force them back using DMA.
Back to the topic of video; is there _any_ way to permanently disable, or at least prevent FreeBSD from detecting the integrated video on the motherboard? There is nothing in the machines BIOS that would allow this. This would just be "nice" to do, as X works just fine, but it still sticks an entry into the XFree86Config file for the integrated chip.
Does the motherboard have a jumper that will disable it?
Where can one obtain a complete list of allowed hints for use in /boot/device.hints? I tried searching around the FBSD site as well as the handbook and found no listing, other than a line here and a line there.
This has been desired for a long time, yes. There have been periodic pushes to do this, but they quickly loose steam or become outdated.
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