How to force boot option 3?
I've been searching on and off for a couple of days now, but have not found a solution to my problem, or perhaps I did see it, but didn't understand - I'm brand new to both OpenBSD and pfSense.
My gateway machine is running the standard pfSense (not the embedded) will only boot with "option 3". Currently someone needs to manually select "option 3" if the computer is reset. How can I make "option 3" the default boot option?
Just for the record, pfSense is based on FreeBSD not OpenBSD.
That said, its a bit hard to guess what Option 3 is. Is it a synonym for something else? If so what? What are the other options?
Perhaps you are referring to the FreeBSD boot loader's prompt when it detects hard drives with other operating systems, e.g (something like:)
(which I don't think you will see if you have only one hard drive with only FreeBSD on it.) This normally waits for only a few seconds before proceeding to whatever option you chose last time.
On the other hand, you might be referring to the FreeBSD loader's menu which normally also automatically proceeds with a default option if you don't reply in time. In this case Option 3 would probably be:
Boot FreeBSD in Safe Mode
If this is the Option 3 you mean then what happens if you use another option?
Oh, I forgot to mention the very informative FreeBSD handbook you can find at http://www.freebsd.org/doc/en_US.ISO8859-1/books/handbook/index.html The boot process is described in Chapter 12.
And it would also be useful to know what sort of system you have, date of the BIOS and what version of pfSense you are attempting to boot.
It may not relevant, but according to http://lists.freebsd.org/pipermail/freebsd-current/2005-February/046882.html
Safe mode forces PIO mode (disabling the use of DMA) and disables write
caching for all IDE hard drives and CD ROM drives, disables the probing
of EISA slots (as very few systems have them), and in i386 it also
disables the use of ACPI and the APICs.
I'll reply further when you clarify Option 3
Hi Wallabybob, sorry for not being clear.
Yes, I am referring to the FreeBSD loader menu - "Option 3" being safe mode.
If I use "Option 1" or "Option 2", the boot will freeze at different points for each option. Unfortunately I can't remember exactly what boot line each option freezes on off the top of my head. I will check tomorrow if needed.
Trying to boot pfSense 1.2 Release, on an AMD nforce motherboard. I don't know BIOS date or machine specifications at this point, again, I will need to check.
I assume this version of FreeBSD/pfSense doesn't have support for some hardware within the machine. Do later versions of pfSense 1.2.1 or 1.3 use newer versions of the FreeBSD kernel, and therefore support newer/more hardware? I'm not sure if kernel is the right word for FreeBSD, not knowing anything about its architecture, but hopefully you understand what I mean.
Everything appears to work fine when running in safe mode, though I assume I would be getting a performance hit with disk caching disabled. I am happy enough to continue running in safe mode.
Essentially, if there is a file somewhere that I can edit to force "Option 3" (safe mode) upon boot, rather than "Option 1". I'd be happy.
Thank you for your help.
Hi Wallabybob, sorry for not being clear.
No worries. Its not always easy to figure out what is useful information and what is noise.
Trying to boot pfSense 1.2 Release, on an AMD nforce motherboard.
OK, so fairly new rather than an antique.
I'm not sure if kernel is the right word for FreeBSD.
kernel is the common used word in the community to refer to the operating system.
Everything appears to work fine when running in safe mode, though I assume I would be getting a performance hit with disk caching disabled.
Unless you are running the CPU at high utilisation or doing heavy disk caching
I doubt you would notice the hit.
Since you seem to have a fairly recent motherboard I suggest you go with something based on FreeBSD 6.3 or FreeBSD 7.0. There was a 1.2 "Release" kit based on FreeBSD 6.3. See reply 1 in http://forum.pfsense.org/index.php/topic,9819.0 for a link to the kit.
The 1.2.1 "release candidate" kits are based on FreeBSD 7.0 and are made available to interested users to try out and report problems. They can have a few "rough edges" and sometimes major problems (see http://forum.pfsense.org/index.php/topic,11111.0.html and http://forum.pfsense.org/index.php/topic,11129.0.html). I've tried a few of these kits and they have worked pretty well for me but some others have been unlucky and stumbled on broken kits. My last upgrade (only problem was an unexpected quirk in the bridging of wired LAN and wireless LAN) was to a build at
around 10:13 on 12th Aug.
The 1.3 ALPHA ALPHA kits are also based on FreeBSD 7.0 and are very early test versions of what will become pfSense 1.3 which has a lot of new features over 1.2. Don't use these kits unless you're prepared to do a bit of tinkering - they're not yet for someone who wants to leave their firewall alone and just have it work.
There is a file, /boot/loader.conf, which can be tweaked to do at least some of the things that safe mode apparently does. However I think any changes you make to that file are in danger of getting lost on an upgrade.
Since you are new to pfSense and FreeBSD I think your best course is to try the 1.2 kit based on FreeBSD 6.3. Boot it in safe mode, connect through the web browser, from the Diagnostics menu pick Command, in the command box type dmesg then click the execute button to display all the startup output and post that output to a reply here. Then reboot in non-safe mode. if it works all is well, if it doesn't work record the last few lines of console output and post them and we can compare with the complete startup which may give some clues as what might have been happening just before you hit the problem.
Thanks for that. I'll try one of your suggestions tonight.
Just for your, or anyone else reading's, information. The machine is an AMD Athlon XP 3200+ on an ASUS A7N8-E Deluxe ACPI BIOS Rev 1013 (Nvidia nforce). With Phoenix Award BIOS v6.00PG.