Using the Text Installer/10.1

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This page is a translated version of a page Using the Text Installer/10.1 and the translation is 100% complete.

If you prefer to perform an installation using an ncurses menu rather than a full graphical installer, select the option "Text Install/Emergency Console" from the PC-BSD® installer boot menu shown in Figure 3a. Once the installer finishes loading, you will see the screen shown in Figure 5.1a.

Figure 5.1a: Text Installation Menu

This initial menu provides the following options:

  • install: continues the installation using the text-based installer.
  • vesa: launches the graphical installer in VESA mode.
  • reboot: exits the installer and reboots the system.

Use the up/down arrows to highlight a menu item, then press the spacebar to select the highlighted item. When finished, press enter to save the selection and move on to the next screen. If you keep the default selection of "install", the next screen will prompt to install a desktop or a server, as seen in Figure 5.1b.

Figure 5.1b: Select Desktop or Server

If you choose to install a desktop, the KDE and Fluxbox window managers will be installed and configured for you. After the installation is complete, the system will boot into the usual post-installation configuration screens.

If you choose to install a server, neither X nor a window manager will be installed, resulting in a command-line only TrueOS® installation. Before the installation starts, you will be prompted to enter and confirm the root password (which will not be echoed to the screen) and to enter a username, password, real name, and shell in order to create a user account to use for logins. After installation, the system will boot into a command prompt where you can enter the username and password that was created.

After making a selection and pressing enter, the next screen will display the available disks on the system. In the example shown in Figure 5.1c, one disk is available.

Figure 5.1c: Select Installation Disk

Select the disk to install into and press enter. In the next screen, the installer will display all available primary or GPT partitions. In the example shown in Figure 5.1d, there is only one partition and the installer has selected the default of installing to the entire disk. If you have multiple partitions and disks, carefully select the disk and partition to install to.

Figure 5.1d: Select Partition

The next screen, shown in Figure 5.1e, is used to select the type of disk format. If the installation disk or partition is larger than 2 TB, GPT must be selected. Otherwise, selecting GPT should work for most hardware. When installing on older hardware, or if the newly installed system will not boot after selecting GPT, select MBR instead.

Figure 5.1e: Select Disk Format

The next screen, shown in Figure 5.1f, is used to select whether or not to use the GRUB boot manager. The default is to use GRUB as it is required to support multiple multiple boot environments. If you select none, no boot manager will be installed and boot environments will not be available.

Figure 5.1f: Select Boot Manager

The next screen is shown in Figure 5.1g. This screen provides the option to encrypt the selected disk(s) with the FreeBSD GELI[1] framework. If you keep the default of Yes and press enter, you will be prompted to enter and confirm a passphrase. You will be prompted to enter this passphrase whenever you boot into PC-BSD®. This means that if someone else boots your computer, they will not be able to boot into PC-BSD® if they do not know your passphrase. However, if you forget your passphrase, you will not be able to access PC-BSD® either. For these reasons, it is important to choose a good passphrase that other users will not guess and which you will not forget. Passphrases are case-sensitive and can contain spaces. The passphrase should be memorable to you, such as a line from a song or piece of literature, but hard to guess in that people who know you should not be able to guess your favorite line from a song or piece of literature.

Figure 5.1g: Full Disk Encryption
NOTE: Be careful if you have changed your keyboard variant and layout. At this time, the GELI encryption framework only supports QWERTY passphrases, so do not use any characters not found on a QWERTY keyboard in your passphrase. DO NOT set a passphrase with accents or special characters which are not found on a US keyboard. This is a limitation in FreeBSD as the keymap is not loaded until after the passphrase is entered, meaning that such a passphrase will render that partition as inaccessible.

The next screen is shown in Figure 5.1h. If you would like to manage installed software or jails from your phone or a remote system, press enter to select the default option of Yes. If you only plan to use AppCafe® from the system you are installing, arrow over to No instead.

Figure 5.1h: Configure Remote Access to AppCafe

If you select Yes, you will be prompted to input a username, password, and port number to use when accessing AppCafe® from another device.

The next screen is shown in Figure 5.1i.

Figure 5.1i: Review Installation Options

To start the installation, press enter to select install.

To re-run the text installer, and re-input your selections, select wizard.

To review, and possibly change any of the installation parameters, select edit to see the screen shown in Figure 5.1j.

Figure 5.1j: Edit Menu

To change the disk to install into, select disk. This will re-open the screens shown in Figures 5.1c through 5.1g, and then return you to the menu shown in Figure 5.1j.

If the system contains multiple disks and you wish to change the disk layout to a mirror or RAIDZ, select zpool. The allowable layouts for the number of disks will be displayed so that you can select the desired layout.

To modify the default ZFS layout, select zfs which will open the screen shown in Figure 5.1k.

Figure 5.1k: ZFS Layout

To edit the properties of an existing dataset, highlight the dataset's name and press enter. This will show the list of available ZFS properties for that dataset, as seen in the example shown in Figure 5.1l. To change the value of a ZFS property, highlight it and press enter. The available values will vary, depending upon the selected property.

NOTE: While you can delete a dataset, the default datasets are needed for boot environments. For this reason, it is not recommended to delete any default datasets. ZFS options are described in zfs(8)[2] and you should not change any options unless you are familiar with the ramifications of doing so.
Figure 5.1l: ZFS Properties for a Dataset

If you wish to add additional datasets, select add in the screen shown in Figure 5.1k. This will prompt for the full path of the mountpoint to create. For example, you could create a dataset named /usr/shares. The dataset you create will be added to the bottom of the list. If you select the dataset and press enter, you can set its ZFS properties.

Once you are finished customizing the ZFS layout, select done in the screen shown in Figure 5.1k which will return you to the screen shown in Figure 5.1j.

To configure networking, select network in the screen shown in Figure 5.1j. You will be prompted to enter a hostname, to select either automatic DHCP configuration on all interfaces or to specify the interface to configure, and whether or not to enable SSH. Once finished, you will be returned to the screen shown in Figure 5.1j.

If you select view in the screen shown in Figure 5.1j, the ASCII text file containing the configuration script will be displayed. If you instead select edit, this script will open in the ee editor, allowing you to make changes. The parameters supported by the installation script are described in Creating an Automated Installation with pc-sysinstall/10.1.

Once you are finished with your customizations, select back to return to the screen shown in Figure 5.1i.

If you select hardware from the screen shown in Figure 5.1i, the installer will provide a hardware summary. The example shown in Figure 5.1m is from a system with a disabled sound card and no wireless card.

Figure 5.1m: Hardware Summary

To exit the the menu shown in Figure 5.1i, select quit. This will return you to the main menu shown in Figure 5.1a.

Using the System Utilities Menu

The text installer contains some handy tools for troubleshooting or fixing an existing PC-BSD® or TrueOS® installation.

If you click the utility option in the main menu of the text based installer shown in Figure 5.1a, it will open the screen shown in Figure 5.1n.

Figure 5.1n: System Utilities Menu

This screen provides the following options:

  • shell: this option is useful if you are troubleshooting a PC-BSD® system that no longer boots. It will open a shell with administrative access that includes the base FreeBSD utilities. You can use this shell to try to determine what the problem is and, if necessary, to create a backup or copy essential files to another system. When you are finished using the shell, type exit to return to the screen shown in Figure 5.1n.
  • zimport: this option will import and mount a ZFS pool in order to do some maintenance. The pool will be mounted to /mnt so you can chroot or manipulate files as needed.
  • fixgrub: this option can be used to restamp the GRUB boot loader should the installed system no longer boot. When this option is selected, it will first show the available ZFS pools and prompt you to input the name of the pool to import.
  • exit: this option will return you to the main menu seen in Figure 5.1a.


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