Latest FREEBSD 10 does not boot after clean installation.

Installed using this image: FreeBSD-10.0-RELEASE-amd64-memstick.img

Used Guided Partitioning, where I selected my only hard drive, chose Entire Disk and selected "finish". Autopartitioning looked perfectly OK: GPT, boot, ufs, swap

Installation goes OK without any error message, but after final reboot - I get no bootable device found.

I tried these command in LiveCD shell: gpart bootcode -b /boot/mbr ada0 gpart set -a active ada0

I also tried this command gpart destroy -F /dev/ada0 after which I re-installed BSD and it still does not boot.

Hard drive's SMART looks good. No bad sectors. BIOS settings are correct (UEFI is turned off).

I was able to successfully install previous version of FreeBSD using FreeBSD-9.2-RELEASE-amd64-memstick.img and followed exactly same steps, autopartitioning looks absolutely identical.**

I tried to install using CD version FreeBSD-10.0-RELEASE-amd64-disc1.iso and I get exactly same issue, BIOS won't boot it.**

Please help, I'm not sure why 10.0-RELEASE won't boot.

The same problem is experienced in FreeBSD-10.0-RELEASE-i386-disc.iso too

  • First, with GPT, you should use /boot/pmbr instead of /boot/mbr. Then, boot partition should contain /boot/gptboot. Try to follow instructions from gptboot(8) manpage to restore booting. – Netch Apr 20 '14 at 8:35
  • @Netch: Followed your advise and performed gpart bootcode -b /boot/pmbr -p /boot/gptboot -i 1 ada0, but BIOS still won't boot. – Alex G Apr 20 '14 at 15:35
  • Exactly same issue here: forums.freebsd.org/viewtopic.php?t=44607 but I also tried replacing hard drive to an older one, and it did not work. – Alex G Apr 20 '14 at 16:09
  • Try this ZFS root install script if you don't mind using ZFS. – Matt May 10 '14 at 8:35
  • Same issue here. I don't get any error messages, the boot process just stops after Verifying DMI Pool Data ... (which comes from the BIOS or whatever, not from the OS). – ssc Jun 18 '14 at 17:57

I had a similar problem and here's what I had to do on FreeBSD 10.0. Since you don't yet have an answer, here's what I did. After the install (which I did with GPT and ZFS), I opted to go to the terminal instead of rebooting. I then ran the following commands.

gpart set -a active /dev/ada0
gpart set -a bootme -i 1 /dev/ada0

'1' was the number of my boot partition from gpart show.

  • This fixed the issue after installing FreeBSD-10.2-RELEASE-amd64-memstick. Thanks – Wextux Jan 15 '16 at 16:57

Possible stating the obvious here, but when this kind of thing happens and I don't know why, I assume it's some problem with the partition table, old geom metadata or suchlike. I just fill the drive with zeros using dd and worry about something else while it's happening. I can't recall this strategy failing unless the BIOS didn't want to play.


The problem seems to be that the guided / automatic hard drive partitioning uses a GPT partitioning scheme. After a clean FreeBSD 10.0 AMD64 installation using default values everywhere (except obviously for root password, etc.), my machine wouldn't boot either.

I re-did the installation, this time partitioning the hard drive manually using an MBR partition scheme and the machine now boots. The installer does not provide any help here, so make sure you first create a FreeBSD partition and then create partitions (with filesystem type and mount point) within that partition. It helps to take a screenshot (using a camera :o)) or write down the automatic sizes set by the installer automatically in a previous GPT partitioning.

My motherboard (I believe the BIOS is the crucial bit here) is a Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4P with the latest non-Beta BIOS version F13. The manual doesn't even mention GPT.

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