FreeBSD  Release  11.0  Install  Guide

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Preparing PC for FBSD

 

There are two FBSD environments. The FBSD workstation and the FBSD server.

The FBSD workstation environment is equivalent to a MS/Windows workstation. It has a GUI (graphical user interface) using an AGP video card, a sound card, a read/write CDROM device, scanner, and all the other devices one would expect on a MS/Windows workstation.

The FBSD server environment contains all the facilities the normal MS/Windows home user never sees because these services are provided by the users ISP, such as a Firewall, Mail server, Domain name server, and the like.

The intended final usage of the PC will dictate what FBSD components need to be installed and which are not needed. The primary difference is the GUI component is not normally installed for a server environment as it consumes a very large amount of disk space which penalizes you every time you do a system backup of your system.

This Install Guide's stated purpose is the building of a FBSD gateway server, and as such will not have the GUI component installed.

Another area of consideration is the style of PC, Desktop or Laptop. FBSD does function on both.

Laptop PCs have some quirks when it comes to I/O devices such as NICs and modems. Laptops have been used for servers, but it is highly recommended that laptops only be used for workstations. Even though this document is written for the desktop style of PC, everything also applies to the laptop to some varying degree.

The desktop style of PC is the targeted PC this Install Guide is written to.

Installer Note: Be aware that a lot of PCI modem cards are specially designed to work only with MS/Windows PCs. These types of modems are known as WinModems. FBSD only works with internal PCI modems that have onboard controllers. WinModems do not have onboard controllers and can usually be identified by the use of lucent chips on the circuit board.

5.4 is the first release to no longer support pre Y2K legacy PC's. Install problems show up in legacy PC's using 40 pin UDMA33 hard drives, default memory sizes and CPU speeds under 1GHz. You can work around this be using an newer PC to install the system on the Hard drive then put the hard drive in an legacy PC to run.

8.0 is the first release to include a complete rewrite of the USB stack. This resolves many problems with plug in external hard drives, plug in printers and booting from a USB stick. FBSD runs best on PC equipment manufactured after 2008.

9.0 is the first release that replaces the legacy sysinstall utility with the long awaited bsdinstall utility.

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This FreeBSD Install Guide is an public domain HOW-TO. This content may be reproduced, in any form or by any means, and used by all without permission in writing from the author.