[PC-BSD Testing] 8.2 installer problems, macbook pro

Bridger Dyson-Smith bdysonsmith at gmail.com
Tue Feb 22 16:41:25 PST 2011

hi list -

i'm experimenting with setting up a dual-boot mac book pro and i've
encountered some problems (important caveats: any/all of these could be
user/operator error, and i'm not entirely sure about my terminology so
please excuse me if i misname something).

here are the particulars - let me know if i can provide other info:
mac book pro v5,4 (2.53 GHz core 2 duo, 4GB DDR3 ram, nvidia geforce 9400M,
and a 250GB hard drive)
mac os x snow leopard 10.6.6
pcbsd 8.2 x64 DVD

1) when you reach the PCBSD installer boot menu, the timer does not count
down from 10. instead, there's approximately a 3 second pause, and the
system goes for the default boot installer option.

2) if you select any other option at this point, the system tries to start
the boot installer process but then fails at some point (i'm not sure where
exactly). the failure generates a cascade of what looks to be error
messages; i can't read them (or get a screenshot), but i think it's a
repeated message about "interrupts disabled".

3) if i leave the installer boot menu alone, the install begins normally and
proceeds to the graphical Sysinstaller. everything would appear to be
working up to this point; unfortunately, after selecting a partition for
installation i get the "Can only install to a MBR partition!" error message.

the first two problems seem like they might be installer-related, while the
third problem feels more like a user error :-).
again, if there's any additional information i can provide to help suss the
problems, please let me know.

thanks very much for your time!

[1] my procedure for partitioning:
a) back up everything :-)
b) use mac's boot camp assistant to create a "blank" partition - although i
don't think that the partition created is actually blank, i'm not smart
enough to know how to determine exactly what's on the partition
c) use mac's disk utility to try to erase any errata that boot camp
assistant placed on the partition
d) reboot the laptop, booting from the dvd-rom
e) be careful not to touch any buttons at the installer boot menu
f) gnash my teeth when Sysinstaller refuses to accept the previously created
g) try several more times
h) email the testing list

one last bit of errata: when i caused problem 2) above, i was attempting to
access the #6 option (boot to emergency console) to use the suggested fdisk
instructions here: http://wiki.freebsd.org/AppleMacbook but that option
caused that problem on which i'm unable to give much detail.
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