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With FreeBSD 8 you could manually install by doing something like:

# mdconfig -f /FreeBSD-8.2-RELEASE-amd64-disc1.iso
# mount -t cd9660 /dev/md0 /cdrom
# cd /cdrom/8.*
# export DESTDIR=/mnt
# cd base; sh install.sh; cd ..
# cd catpages; sh install.sh; cd ..
# cd manpages; sh install.sh; cd ..
# cd src; sh install.sh all; cd ..
# cd kernels; sh install.sh generic; cd ..

etc.. This was very handy for remote installs and other special circumstances.

FreeBSD 9 install has changed a lot and the CD directory structure is totally different so I'm wondering if anyone knows of a similar way of doing this with FreeBSD 9? Appreciate any help.

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You could get the binary sets from the server and proceed similarly, I suppose. – sr_ Feb 22 '12 at 17:37
Good idea. I will look into this. Thanks. – Maniac Feb 23 '12 at 9:36
up vote 2 down vote accepted

The distribution is broken up into larger chunks now. In theory you can extract the tarballs (they are tar xz) with bsdtar into their appropriate directories. kernels and base are the two you'd need.

As far as trying to semi-automate it, bsdinstall (the sysinstall replacement) actually calls multiple scripts and programs. You can edit them to your needs. The source is in /usr/src/usr.sbin/bsdinstall and you can find installed copies of most of it in /usr/libexec/bsdinstall/

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Was wondering where the bsdinstall stuff was, guess I should have looked a little harder. :-) Thank you that very helpful I think I can get it worked out now. – Maniac Feb 23 '12 at 9:37

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