Friday, February 22, 2008

FreeBSD progress

As with most things, if you keep at them, despite a feeling of desperation, dejection and pointlessness, you will actually see improvements.
So it is with my attempts to get a VM of FreeBSD 6.3 working on my Dell desktop.
Two relevant points here are:
1) To get FreeBSD VM to start (or boot) you MUST install the standard MBR during the creation of the VM. I had chosen "none" for the first few times simply because of problems I've had in the past with a new bootloader going in and destroying my multiboot system which relies on the MBR/bootloader being in a certain place.
Of course, this fear was totally unfounded as he VM creation looks ONLY at a virtual disk and nowhere else.
So, once I had installed the standard MBR, it booted up fine.
However, because of the major problems I was having with package installation, I did none at all this time. However, the VM turned out to be purely text-based. Typing "startx" did nothing other than give an error message.
So, I tried again and installed nearly ALL the X11 stuff.
Booted up again and this time "startx" did give a GUI -- although it has to be said a rather simple one. But I haven't gotten around to starting up any window manager yet so this may improve.
In any event, I've now broken through that initial barrier and it's time for me to start learing how to use FreeBSD. I'm going to use this guide.

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