Subject: Re: should sysinst change MBR_PTYPE_386BSD to MBR_PTYPE_NETBSD?
To: David Laight <>
From: Robert Elz <kre@munnari.OZ.AU>
List: tech-install
Date: 06/16/2003 04:23:05
    Date:        Sun, 15 Jun 2003 22:08:37 +0100
    From:        David Laight <>
    Message-ID:  <>

  | These are all compounded by editing the mbr table prior to an overlay
  | install,

Separating these two in sysinst is a big mistake - there should be just
one disk layout step, which should accomplish both - first (if necessary)
by determining how much total space (and where) for NetBSD (defaulting to
what is in NetBSD MBR partition(s), if any, or unallocated space on the drive
if not) and then just using the NetBSD label to allocate the space.

Once that is done, whatever MBR partitions are needed to prevent some other
installer from believing there's more unallocated space on the drive than
actually exists should be created, automatically - with the NetBSD MBR
partition being placed so it is correct for booting (the bootstrap code
and the NetBSD disklabel need to be there).   Beyond that, the NetBSD MBR
partition is irrelevant to NetBSD (I know you know that, I'm not sure
that everyone here understands).    If all the NetBSD space can be
described by that one MBR entry, fine (that will be the usual case).
If not, create others (stick them in extended partitions, where no normal
NetBSD code will ever see them) to handle the other ranges.

There's absolutely no point allowing sysinst to create setups which can't
work with NetBSD - if someone has a need to do that, they can use fdisk
or disklabel manually.   They'll know how.   There also isn't a reason to
tell novices that they have to allocate space for NetBSD twice.   That's
something that most people simply cannot believe makes any sense at all.