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To:freebsd-hackers@freebsd.org From:Eric McCorkle Subject:Re: FreeBSD on MacBook Date:Mon, 07 May 2012 16:53:17 -0400
 

On 05/05/12 23:58, Alfred Zhong wrote:
> Hi Dear Hackers,
>
> I tried to install FreeBSD on my MacBook. Bascially I followed this post
> online.
> http://www.glenbarber.us/2011/11/12/Dual-Booting-OS-X-and-FreeBSD-9.html
>
> And the tragedy happened. I do remember, as the post said, typed
> gpart bootcode -b /boot/pmbr -p /boot/gptboot -i 3 ada0
>
> By the way, I did installed rEFIT on Mac OS
>
> After rebooting, I see neither my Mac boot option nor the FreeBSD boot
> option. Even after holding Option key...
>
> The only stuff can boot is if I insert a CD (say, the FreeBSD live CD)...
>
> My installation was successful, but the boot loader was messed up!
>
> How can I fix this?
>

It is possible to install on a macbook (I've done it), though the
process is a bit more intricate than any of the guides available suggest.

Basically, you need to install an MBR and boot in legacy BIOS mode.
Apple's EFI implementation does some funny things, and FreeBSD doesn't
support EFI on i386 (yet, I'm actually working on adding support).

I have a ZFS-only system, laid out as follows: there is an MBR with one
partition, containing a BSDlabel. Inside that, there is a swap
partition, and a single ZFS instance. When installing, you'll need to
use dd to install the first part of zfsboot to the bsdlabel, and the
remaining portion to the free space after the ZFS header (there's a
guide on how to do that somewhere).

--
Eric McCorkle
Computer Science Ph.D Student
eric@shadowsun.net


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