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3 Making Compatibility Mode Disks

3.1 Introduction

The command line is the easiest way to make dedicated disks, and the worst way to make compatibility disks. The command-line fdisk utility requires higher math skills and an in-depth understanding of the slice table, which is more than most people want to deal with. Use sysinstall for compatibility disks, as described below.

3.2 Making Compatibility Mode Disks Using Sysinstall

  1. Start sysinstall as root by typing

        # /stand/sysinstall
    from the command prompt.

  2. Select Index.

  3. Select Partition.

  4. Select the disk to edit with arrow keys and SPACE.

  5. If you are using this entire disk for FreeBSD, select A.

  6. When asked:

        Do you want to do this with a true partition entry so as to remain
        cooperative with any future possible operating systems on the
    answer yes.

  7. Select Write.

  8. When asked to install the boot manager, select None with SPACE then hit ENTER for OK.

  9. Quit the FDISK Editor.

  10. You will be asked about the boot manager, select None again.

  11. Select Label from the Index menu.

  12. Label as desired. For a single partition, accept the default size, type filesystem, and a mountpoint (which is not used).

  13. The filesystem will be newfs'd for you, unless you select otherwise (for new partitions you will want to do this!). You will get the error:

        Error mounting /mnt/dev/ad2s1e on /mnt/blah : No such file or directory

  14. Exit out by repeatedly pressing ESCAPE.

Your new disk is now ready for use.

This, and other documents, can be downloaded from

For questions about FreeBSD, read the documentation before contacting <>.
For questions about this documentation, e-mail <>.

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