Using the Text Installer/10.0

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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 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 make selections then press enter to continue with the selection. If you keep the default selection of "install", you will be prompted to install a desktop or a server in the screen shown 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. Once this configuration is complete, you can install additional window managers using Package Manager/10.0.

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 partitions. In the example shown in Figure 5.1d, their is only one primary partition on one disk and the installer has selected the default of installing to the entire disk. If you have multiple primary partitions and disks, carefully select the disk and partition to install to.

Figure 5.1d: Select Primary Partition

The next screen, shown in Figure 5.1e, is used to select which, if any, boot manager to use. The default is to use GRUB as it is required to support multiple boot environments. If you select BSD, the FreeBSD boot manager will be installed and if you select none, no boot manager will be installed. Note that BSD and none do not support boot environments.

Figure 5.1e: Select Boot Manager

The next screen, shown in Figure 5.1f, allows you to start the installation, edit the installation parameters, go through the installer screens again, or quit the installer.

Figure 5.1f: Review Installation Options

If you wish to change any of the installation parameters, select edit to see the screen shown in Figure 5.1g.

Figure 5.1g: Edit Menu

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 change the disk to install into, select disk. This will re-open the screens shown in Figures 5.1c, 5.1d, and 5.1e, and then return you to the screen shown in Figure 5.1g.

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

Figure 5.1h: 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 5.1i. 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)[1] and you should not change any options unless you are familiar with the ramifications of doing so.
Figure 5.1i: ZFS Properties for a Dataset

If you wish to add additional datasets, select add in the screen shown in Figure 5.1h. 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 5.1h which will return you to the screen shown in Figure 5.1g.

To configure networking, select network in the screen shown in Figure 5.1g. 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 5.1g.

If you select view in the screen shown in Figure 5.1g, the ASCII text file containing the configuration script will be displayed. If you instead select edit, this script will open in the vi editor, allowing you to make changes. The parameters supported by the installation script are described in Creating an Automated Installation with pc-sysinstall/10.0.

Once you are finished with your customizations, select back to return to the screen shown in Figure 5.1f so that you can begin the installation.

Using the System Utilities Menu

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

Figure 5.1j: System Utilities Menu

This screen provides three 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 5.1j.
  • chroot: this option is useful if you want to modify an installation file before performing an installation.
  • exit: this option will return you to the main menu seen in Figure 5.1a.


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