Rich Mingin (PLUG) on 9 Jul 2017 18:26:08 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] Booting, UEFI, BIOS

For some quick pedantry, if UEFI is an option at all, you *are* booting via UEFI. Legacy OSes and bootloaders are handled by the CSM (Compatibility Support Module). It's basically a UEFI program in the firmware that provides all the legacy firmware as a program.

If you're coming in clean, with no previous experience, I'd vote strongly for UEFI. FreeBSD supports both, and equally well at this point, and UEFI has a future, legacy boot really doesn't. 

On Sun, Jul 9, 2017 at 8:55 PM, Charlie Li <> wrote:
On 09/07/17 17:01, George Zipperlen wrote:
> 1) Which boot method should I choose?  Both BIOS and UEFI involve a
> learning curve for me.
At a high level, it doesn't matter. At a lower level, UEFI does have
certain features MBR booting could never have, much of which has to do
with the GUID Partition Table and clearly defined boot executables.
> 2) If I choose UEFI, will it make USB sticks or CD/DVD with the old
> boot method unbootable?  I'd like to be able to boot SystemRescueCD
> when all else fails.  This may be a stupid question, but I don't
> really understand the modern boot process.
They will only be unbootable if you configure your BIOS accordingly, ie
UEFI only mode. UEFI firmwares (in theory and in at least my machine)
implement MBR booting in a thin compatibility mode, thus as long as you
set your BIOS to both, you should be fine. Just pay attention to your
boot order as usual.
> My current plan is to run FreeBSD as the (only) booted OS, using the
> ZFS file system.  I see no need for other disk partitions in these
> days of 100Gigabyte to Terabyte HDDs and cheap USB sticks for file
> transfer. I may be wrong on this?
Well, with ZFS, you're not using just a filesystem, you're using an
entire volume manager…
> I can then run other OSs, including various flavors of Linux in virtual
> machines (bhyve). I think a hypervisor is better for my purposes then
> a container.  I want to learn Linux, and play with things like Plan9 /
> Inferno, and also access legacy systems like DomainOS in  MAME/MESS
> emulator.
> I'm choosing FreeBSD because I believe that the kernel is lighter weight (?)
> but mostly because it is more like the systems on which I learned Unix in
> user space, admin space, and kernel.
You know I support this endeavour, and you're right.

Remember FreeBSD comes with its own bootloader so no need for GRUB or
anything. I have my FreeBSD VirtualBox VM set up to boot using UEFI.

Charlie Li
Can't think of a witty .sigline today…

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