Tuesday, January 31, 2006


A little while ago I added an old G3 PowerMac to my lab. It's 350MHz box with 768MB RAM, running OS 10.2.8. It's a nice machine, albeit a bit pokey by today's standards. Last week I came up with the idea of adding a second disk and installing FreeBSD on it, so I could run an internal FTP server and apps like Iperf without the overhead of OS X.

I added a 20 GB drive scrounged from an old Cobalt Qube3. It's seutp as a slave on the primary IDE connection.

Unfortunately, FreeBSD refused to install. Doing some googling indicated that the error I saw was someting that what supposed to be fixed in FreeBSD-6, but wasn't. So, I decided to try OpenBSD 3.8 for Mac PPC. I've been wanting to try OpenBSD for a long time anyway.

Setting up the disks in OpenBSD's installer runnign fdisk took me a few tries but I got it figured out. The install went OK after I found an FTP mirror that wasn't already maxed out (OpenBSD doesn't make full ISOs available for download).

At this point I can't get the box to boot into OpenBSD. Much googling has revealed instructions on how to configure Open Firmware to boot a Mac into OpenBSD when you've got only one disk in the machine, but I haven't found anything about booting from a second IDE drive.

I debating whether to wipe the main disk and make the box OpenBSD only, or to wipe the second disk, reformat it HFS+, and just use Iperf and the FTP server from OS X. Suggestions on how to get OpenBSD working in a dual-boot config are welcome.

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