A while ago I decided to unretire my 2006 Macbook and turn it into a low powered server. Specifically to run a BBS, but more on that in a later blog post. To get FreeBSD running properly requires a bit of trickery, so i decided to write a little howo to save you some time and effort. For this you will need the following:
- A FreeBSD install DVD burned with the i386 image as we're dealing with a 32 bit core duo machine here. If you're into that sort of think you can also create a FreeBSD USB stick.
- The OS X Tiger (10.4) Install DVD
Now for the fun part:
Insert DVD/USB stick into Macbook and boot
Hold down the option key to choose to boot from the DVD/USB stick. The boot media should be displayed as "Windows" by the Mac boot manager
Install FreeBSD with default partitions and whichever options you want
With 10.1 I kept getting a
No bootable device -- insert boot disk and press any key
message on bootup. This can easily be fixed by exiting to the shell after the install and typing in
/sbin/gpart set -a active adaX
where adaX is the boot partition. I think this is ada0s1 on the Macbook with the default partition options, but i'm not 100% sure. Please feel free to correct me in the comments if i'm wrong.
Exit and reboot. While rebooting hold down the left trackpad button to eject the DVD. Obviously if you're installing from USB this shouldn't be an issue. Insert the OS X Tiger install DVD and reboot again.
Hold down the C button during the chime to boot from the Tiger DVD. Once booted choose your language and then open the terminal (Utilities/Terminal). Now you need to bless the boot partition (Yes, the engineers at Apple have quite the ego). Type the following in the shell:
bless --device /dev/disk0s1 --setBoot --legacy
- Reboot again and you should be rewarded with the FreeBSD boot screen:
Now pat yourself on the back for a job well done. You deserve it.