[PC-BSD Testing] PCBSD 8.1 RC1 x64 installation experience

Mike Bybee mbybee at dometrilogy.com
Wed Jun 23 06:22:58 PDT 2010

On Wed, Jun 23, 2010 at 1:41 AM, Alexander Yerenkow <yerenkow at uct.ua> wrote:

> 22.06.2010 22:46, rascal пишет:
>  Hi there!
>> In this email I'd like to describe my experience installing latest pcbsd.
>> After the incident with deleted partition everything went pretty good :)
>> This may seem like lot of criticism, but it's from point of view of
>> "casual" user, who is actually the target group from this system. Anyway I'm
>> big fan of your work and I can see improvements in every version.
>> first comment is aimed at preinstall:
>> 1) I've bought dedicated flash drive to install bsd from usb flash drive,
>> to avoid the anguish of plaing with loud and slow dvd's. Unfortunately both
>> linux and bsd don't have a good tool to save an pcbsd "img" usb-image to usb
>> drive. Using dd it takes slightly more than 1 hour to write the image to
>> flashdrive (speed under 1MB/s). Using win32 imager under Windows it takes
>> cca 10-15 min to write te image (speed cca 9MB/s).
>> Maybe there is some tool I've not seen? Or would it be possible to make
>> pcbsd image compatible with UNetbootin? This would save us the trouble of
>> making our own tool and it would be much faster to make usb bootable drives.
>>  I think you simply run command
> dd if=*.img of=/dev/da*
> ?
> Slowness was because no required options were specified;
> You should do something like that:
> dd if=*.img of=/dev/da* bs=1m
> (It will copy by 1Mb blocks, which is faster than default block size)
I think the real trick here is less that we can use dd with better options,
more that we really should make a wrapper tool available and easily
accessible. For example, I am completely addicted to remastersys and the
Ubuntu Startup Disk Creator.

>  2)It takes quite long time to boot from flash drive (now maybe my flash
>> drive is slow at this, I don't know, but it's supposed to be fast one). But
>> I guess those modules (included wireless) are needed for the live cd mode,
>> so they have to be loaded anyway.
> Well, it's slowly boots nowadays from CD/DVD too.
I do this a lot, but I never tried comparing the boot times linux vs BSD.
I'll do this and see how big a difference there is. I know PC-BSD is quite a
lot slower than Ubuntu, but not sure if it's a minute or two or like 10.
I'll report on it.

>> 3) the issue with disk partition was described yesterday
>> 4) on the "users" screen of the installer, the auto-login checkbox is
>> checked by default. I guess most windows users are used to that, but it does
>> not go well with unix pholosophy of being secure. Maybe it would be better
>> to leave it unchecked?
>> 5) During the installation itself, the window does not jump like crazy,
>> like it used to do. Good job, this looks much better. It's also nice, that
>> the components are listed separately and the progress bar is not stuck at
>> 99% like it did before.
>> 6)The installation as a whole took 30 minutes (30minutes of uptime when
>> rebooting). This is not bad, but could have been better. E.g. Ubuntu is done
>> in much less time (like 15 or 20 minutes I'd say). Of course they provide cd
>> image, not dvd image, but I'm just asking myself what's all that stuff on
>> the image. 3,5 GB is a lot of data. I understand you want to deliver "full
>> package", but is it really necessary?
> It's PBI's, sources and ports. It's really necessary when internet isn't
> fast as could be.
> Also, all system files are compressed with LZMA, which saves space by cost
> of unpacking time.
>> 7) I did not choose bsd bootloader, since I have grub2 from ubuntu. It was
>> quite a pain to find a correct setup for grub.cfg file, but finally found it
>> (in internet there is lot of outdated info for older grub types).
>> Mine looks like this (end of file):
>> ### BEGIN /etc/grub.d/40_custom ###
>> # This file provides an easy way to add custom menu entries. Simply type
>> the
>> # menu entries you want to add after this comment. Be careful not to
>> change
>> # the 'exec tail' line above.
>> menuentry "PC-BSD 8.1 x64 (on /dev/ad0s1)" {
>> set root=(hd0,1)
>> chainloader +1
>> }
>> ### END /etc/grub.d/40_custom ###
> Same thing here, I've installed Ubuntu, and I wasn't able to boot PC-BSD
> until I found same solution.
>> Harddisk are numbered starting with 0, partitions do start with 1 instad
>> (pcbsd sits on my ad0s1 or sda1 if you prefer). I found it with experiments,
>> because there is lot of contradicting info in internet. Although grub2
>> recognizes bsd partitions inside the slice, (I mean a, e, c and so on) it
>> does work only when it's configured directly to whole slice. This info is
>> actually useful and could be included in the wiki. I think there are some
>> linux users who would like to try pcbsd but who want to keep their linux
>> grub.
> Actually grub show you all available disks with "ls", or "?";
> FreeBSD disks's easily could be found, they have a,b,d,e prefixes.
> like
> hd0s1, hd1s1, hd2s1, <== Linux or something;
> hd3s1a <== Gotcha!
>> That's all for now, expect another similar email with post-installation
>> comments.
>> foxx
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>> Testing at lists.pcbsd.org
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Mike Bybee
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