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BOOT FAILS: FreeBSD on HP Compaq DC7100


BOOT FAILS: FreeBSD on HP Compaq DC7100


I just installed FreeBSD 5.3 on my HP Compaq DC7100. The problem is, that instead of booting to FreeBSD, the computer reboots.

It's kind of hard being any more specific, since all I see is a computer starting and then rebooting immediately, in an infinite loop.

When the BIOS detects my FreeBSD harddrive, it tells me that if I'm running UNIX, I have to add it to the Setup Utility in F10. But there's nothing to add here, and I haven't found no patch for FreeBSD on the HP websites either. I've tried playing with the BIOS as much as possible, ACPI, DMA settings etc.

But apparently, I've been looking at all the wrong places? Thank you so much for your time.

Personally, I'm helpless.
Virtually, I'm humble.

All the best,
Johann Manaf Tepstad

Re: BOOT FAILS: FreeBSD on HP Compaq DC7100

Doesn't anybody know what to do?
Florian Heigl (new acc)
Honored Contributor

Re: BOOT FAILS: FreeBSD on HP Compaq DC7100

please turn this to - I run a lot of freebsd boxes, but none of them are hp based.
the 'set to unix' usually refers to the disk adressing mode, there often is a dos/unix setting, but for standard pc unices of today this can be ignored. also it can of course be ignored if You're booting of a scsi drive.

do You even get the see the loader prompt? (the ascii art demon)

does a 5.3-install iso boot properly?
are You booting a custom kernel or GENERIC?

you see - I can only try to get You rid of the standard issues, but please head to the mailing list - I doubt hp knows/supports bsd at all as all marketing goes to crappier-than-ever linux. write to stable and hope someone runs the system You do. (or give me one to test around with ;)
yesterday I stood at the edge. Today I'm one step ahead.

Re: BOOT FAILS: FreeBSD on HP Compaq DC7100

Dear Florian!

Thank you for your polite response!

I've sent at least 9 e-mails to, begging for help, but none can give me a straight answer.

No, it doesn't reach as far as to the loader prompt :(

Florian Heigl (new acc)
Honored Contributor

Re: BOOT FAILS: FreeBSD on HP Compaq DC7100

Hehe - You're really lucky in some way.
Last time I found Your posting because I just thought 'heck, let's search for freebsd', now it was 'hey, let's look what the linux guys ask'

Is this Your one of the replies to Your posting?
(BTW: You should have replied back to the list, also the topic looked to much like spam with those ****)

hello frank!

it reboots before coming to the loader prompt.

i have tried disabling acpi/udma etc. in the bios.
there are no settings for operating systems.

i installed freebsd from the miniinst cd.

i've heard of people having the same problem, but
they gave up and went to dragonfly.

now i don't want to do that.

> At what point does it reboot? Have you disabled PnP aware OS in the
> BIOS? what additional hardware do you have installed? What method
> did you install FreeBSD with?

So, if I get it right, You could install, but You can't boot afterwards?

A few things I'd ask You to try:
- Use the 'dangerously dedicated' disk allocation mode
- Reboot from the miniinst cd, escape to shell (alt+f4) and verify Your disk contains what looks like a proper BSD install
- I don't know if compaq still uses that 'suboptimal' utility partition, I remeber we had problems on a ML370 where it got wiped
- Most of all: Try a different boot loader!
(verbose: have a 8 MB dos partition and install grub, netbsd loader or NTLDR and use that to boot and put the BSD bootloader into the header of Your bsd partition)

If the miniinstall disk worked, this means there is no direct problem with bsd on Your box, but there definitely is one with the OS loader.

Your system appears to be a real powerhorse, but I've learned to avoid all vendors that fiddle with BIOSses :(
yesterday I stood at the edge. Today I'm one step ahead.