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The installation files for PC-BSD can be downloaded for free and come with an .iso or .img.bz2 file extension. Depending upon the type of file you choose, the size will vary between ~200MB and ~4GB. This section will show you how to select which file to download and how to verify the download's checksum. The next section will demonstrate how to burn the file to bootable media.
If you have a slow download connection or wish to support the PC-BSD project financially, you can purchase PC-BSD DVDs from the FreeBSD Mall.
Members of the PC-BSD project attend many IT conferences across the globe and give out PC-BSD DVDs at conference booths. Visiting a PC-BSD booth is an excellent way to meet other PC-BSD users and to get your questions answered. Check the PC-BSD Blog to see if any events are happening near you. If you are organizing a PC-BSD booth, contact us to arrange for DVDs.
When you go to the Download page of the PC-BSD website, you will find a number of files available for download:
- DVD-live: contains a live version of PC-BSD running the KDE4 desktop (no components or extra apps); requires a DVD burner/reader
- DVD: contains the full version of PC-BSD (all components and included apps); requires a DVD burner
- CD: contains a stripped down version of PC-BSD and the LXDE desktop (no components or extra apps); requires a CD burner/reader
- USB-live: contains a live version of PC-BSD running the KDE4 desktop (no components or extra apps); requires a USB memory stick or flash card
- USB-full: contains the full version of PC-BSD (all components and included apps); requires a USB memory stick or flash card
- USB-lite: contains a stripped down version of PC-BSD and the LXDE desktop (no components or extra apps); requires a USB memory stick or flash card
- USB-boot-only: contains the installer only; requires a USB memory stick or flash card and a network connection during the install
- Boot-only ISO contains the installer only; requires a CD burner/reader and a network connection during the install
NOTE: the larger the file size, the more components and apps that come with the file. For example, the full versions contain everything while the boot-only versions only contain the installer. Regardless of which media you use to install PC-BSD, you have the option to install additional components and applications after the installation using System Manager and AppCafe™.
There are two versions available for each type of file: one for 32-bit (i386) systems and one for 64-bit (amd64) systems. It is important that you download a file that is appropriate for your computer's CPU architecture (32- or 64-bit).
Note: If you plan to use VirtualBox to install PC-BSD, you can install the 32-bit version, even if your computer is 64-bit. Depending upon your processor's capabilities, you may or may not be able to install the 64-bit version on a 64-bit system using VirtualBox.
Data Integrity Check
After downloading the file that is correct for your architecture and installation type, it is a good idea to check that the file is exactly the same as the one on the PC-BSD server. While downloading, some bits and bytes may get "damaged" or lost, making the installation file unusable. Each PC-BSD download has an associated MD5 checksum which is listed next to the download link. If the checksum of the file you downloaded has the same number, your download was successful. If the MD5 numbers don't match, you should download the file again, preferably from a different mirror. In order to verify the checksum, you will need to use a checksum verification utility.
If you are currently using a Windows system, you can download and install the FastSum utility. Once installed, launch the program and click the Files button, shown in Figure 2.6.1a, to browse to the location of your downloaded file:
Figure 2.6.1a: Verifying a Checksum Using FastSum
Once the file is selected, click the green arrow to calculate the checksum. Once calculated, it will be listed in the Checksum\State column. In this example, the checksum is 59182842F308CE14B66FB437159B05F7.
On Linux and BSD systems you can use the built-in md5 command line tool to check the data integrity of the downloaded file. In this example, the file is located in the Downloads subdirectory of user1's home (~) directory. You should substitute the name and location of the file that you downloaded:
md5 ~/Downloads/PCBSD8.2-BETA1-x86-DVD.iso MD5 (Desktop/PCBSD8.2-BETA1-x86-DVD.iso) = 59182842f308ce14b66fb437159b05f7