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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Working with FIPS

When FIPS first starts, it gives you a warning about not using it in a multitasking environment, among other things. Once you have read all the information, press any key to continue. If you have more than one hard disk in your system, FIPS will ask you which one you want to work on. Select the disk you want. FIPS will then show you the partition table of your disk. It will look something like the following:

     |        |   Start        |      |   End          | Start  |Number of|
Part.|bootable|Head Cyl. Sector|System|Head Cyl. Sector| Sector |Sectors  | MB
1    |  yes   |  1   0     1   |  06h | 12  983   32   |   32   |  409312 | 199
2    |   no   |  0   0     0   |  00h |  0   0     0   |    0   |    0    |  0
3    |   no   |  0   0     0   |  00h |  0   0     0   |    0   |    0    |  0
4    |   no   |  0   0     0   |  00h |  0   0     0   |    0   |    0    |  0

Checking root sector ... OK

Press any Key

If you have more than one partition on your disk, FIPS asks you to select which one you want to split. If you only have one partition on your disk, you are asked to press any key, as in the preceding example. After you have selected a partition or pressed a key to continue, FIPS reads the boot sector and presents some more information on the disk:

Bytes per sector: 512
Sectors per cluster: 8
Reserved sectors: 1
Number of FATs: 2
Number of rootdirectory entries: 512
Number of sectors (short): 0
Media descriptor byte: f8h
Sectors per FAT: 200
Sectors per track: 32
Drive heads: 13
Hidden sectors: 32
Number of sectors (long): 409312
Physical drive number: 80h
Signature: 29h

When FIPS has finished presenting information, it asks you to choose the starting cylinder for the new partition. The size of the new partition and the size of the old partition are presented. Use the left- or right-arrow key to decrease or increase the number the new partition will start on. In addition, you can use the up- or down-arrow key to increase or decrease the size of the new partition in increments of 10 cylinders. You can use the "Start" and "End" numbers of heads, cylinders, and sectors to gauge how you want to divide up your disk; you can decrease the size of the existing partition(s) until the remaining space is big enough for your FreeBSD installation (use the Size column to determine how big it is). Note that, as we'll discuss shortly, a FreeBSD boot partition must exist entirely within the first 1,024 cylinders of the disk. When you have finished, press Enter to continue.


Write down the starting cylinder information for the new partition you create. This will help you verify later on during the FreeBSD installation that you have selected the correct partition on which to install FreeBSD.

Once you have pressed Enter, FIPS shows you what the new partition table will look like. It then gives you the option to re-edit the partition table or continue. If you select Continue, FIPS asks you one last time if you are sure you want to write the changes to the partition table. Be careful at this point! Selecting Y will cause FIPS to write the changes and then exit. This is an irrevocable change; if you write the changes, you won't be able to revert back to the old configuration. After you commit the changes and exit FIPS, you need to reboot your system immediately.

If FIPS exits with any errors, see the README file included with FIPS for more information.


It is very important that after you exit FIPS, you do not create any new data on the hard disk until after you have rebooted. Doing so could corrupt the disk because DOS will not be aware that the partition table has changed until the system has been rebooted.

Once you have rebooted, you should run FIPS again with the -t option. This will check to make sure the partition was split correctly. If errors are reported, restore the previous partition table by running RESTORRB.EXE and then reboot again.


Once you have made any changes to the filesystems on the disk, you can no longer use RESTORRB.EXE to restore the old partition table. Therefore, it is very important that you run fips with the -t option after you reboot before you do anything else.

If fips -t doesn't report any errors, remove the floppy from the drive and then reboot again. When Windows or DOS has finished restarting, you should run ScanDisk on the partition you split to check for any errors.

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