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FreeBSD Installation and Upgrading Installing and upgrading FreeBSD.

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Old 22nd May 2010
kly kly is offline
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Default Help creating a slice

We are installing FreeBSD in a dual boot config with Windows 7 for a project at work. Half the disk will be for Windows 7 and the other half for FreeBSD. I know you need to have the HD geometry the BIOS sees. Dell has become nice and cute with their BIOS and they don't tell you what the geometry is anymore. Is there anyway I can figure out what it is? On previous builds I've trusted the geometry FreeBSD guessed but it was wrong and we ended up having boot problems.
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Old 22nd May 2010
Beastie Beastie is offline
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Manufacturers may not share the disk geometry because it's kinda useless. Both the disk controller and the BIOS are big liars.

Anyway, the most important thing is to know the disk coordinates of the Windows partition. From a livefs disc, use # fdisk DeviceN to find out the beginning and end cylinder, head and sector of the Windows partition (ID 7 for NTFS). Once you have that, install FreeBSD and the boot0 boot manager. If you can't boot Windows anymore, check the partition table with fdisk again, and if the C/H/S values have changed since you installed boot0, restore the original values using # fdisk -u DeviceN.

Needless to say, you must have Windows installed first.
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Old 22nd May 2010
BSDfan666 BSDfan666 is offline
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CHS is mostly redundant on newer drives, most partitioning tools support LBA-based operations

I think the recommended approach in the dual booting world is to install Windows and resize the partition from there, i.e: shrinking it.. and perhaps even adding another partition from there as well, but adjusting the ID using FreeBSD's fdisk(8) to relevant identifier (..is it A5 in FreeBSD?).
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Old 22nd May 2010
ocicat ocicat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BSDfan666 View Post
I think the recommended approach in the dual booting world is to install Windows and resize the partition from there...
Fresh installations of Windows using the standalone version (not the upgrade version requiring an existing Windows installation...) allows the user to specify how many megabytes are to be used by the system partition. Consumption of the entire disk is not required.
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Old 22nd May 2010
BSDfan666 BSDfan666 is offline
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Ah, apologies.. I haven't used/installed Windows in quite a few years.
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