Subject: Re: unattended cdboot
To: David Young <>
From: Bang Jun-Young <>
List: current-users
Date: 07/13/2005 16:07:30
David Young wrote:
> On Tue, Jul 12, 2005 at 06:43:36AM +0900, Bang Jun-Young wrote:
> > Marcin Jessa wrote:
> > > Hi.
> > > 
> > > I compiled cdboot, /usr/src/sys/arch/i386/stand/cdboot (fresh CURRENT sources) and used it with mkisofs to create an iso image
> > > # mkisofs -l -J -R -nobak -no-emul-boot -o myiso.iso -c boot.catalog -b cdboot cdimage/
> > > After boot from CD, cdboot it will fall back to HD boot if you don't press any key.
> > > Why ? If I chose to boot from CD, why would I want to boot from HD if I dont press any key within given time?
> > > Maybe adding some informative text or menu like the FreeBSD's one would be in place?
> > 
> > It _is_ a feature. ;-)
> > 
> > That's because lots of people (including me) often forget to remove the
> > install CD after they installed an OS to the hard disk. That causes to
> > boot from installation CD again on the next boot, and I find it quite
> > annoying (Probably, Microsoft also found that and their CD bootloader 
> > was the first one with the same feature).
> I would like it if the keypress was optional, too.

I think everybody is already familar with the keypress, isn't he? :-)
Unfortunately, there's no single solution that can satisfy everybody.

Let me a bit further explain the situation: when I decide to install
an OS with CD-ROM, I turn on the machine, insert the install CD into the
drive, and see the boot screen carefully. So when "press any key to boot
from CD..." message appears on the screen, I can react appropriately
without difficulty (i.e. pressing Enter). But once installation is done,
I reboot the machine and often leave the computer with the CD inserted
in the drive (for coffee, phone, etc.). When I'm back, what is waiting
for me is the installer on the CD-ROM, not a freshly installed OS on the
hard disk. This would be enough for a newbie to get more or less nervous
to see what's wrong. Even though I'm not a newbie, I still find it

> A few words about my application, since I'm not sure it is supported
> by cdboot today.  I have some unattended wireless routers whose BIOS is
> too dumb or broken to boot from CD-ROM.  I would like to put the cdboot
> primary bootloader onto a floppy disk; the secondary bootloader, kernel,
> and ISO9660 root will go onto the CD-ROM.  There might be a bootable
> hard drive---or a CompactFlash card, at any rate.  Is this something
> that cdboot will support?

Not possible with the current secondary bootloader. It also makes use of
the BIOS functions for CD-ROM support.