Installing FreeBSD amd64 on MacBook Pro 13,3 stalls at Installer

deepdive

New Member


Messages: 5

MacBook Pro:
  • On macOS Big Sur 11. The approach is to completely install freeBSD on top of the native hardware destroying the existing OS.
  • Processor: 2.6 Ghz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
  • Memory: 16 GB
  • HardDisk: 250 GB
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 530 1536 MB
Hello,

I've been trying to install FreeBSD 13.0 amd64 memstick, on an Apple MacBook Pro 13,3. After several attempts using other versions as well(i.e. 12 and 14) the Installer Welcome splash stalls. I get no keyboard response and the only way to break from this freeze is to power down.
Screen Shot 2021-08-10 at 4.12.20 PM.png


UPDATE:
An attempt to boot with Boot Options:
  • Safe Mode On
  • Single User On
  • Verbose On
Result equal another freeze during boot process at this point.
Code:
Enter full pathname of shell or RETURN for bin/sh: random: unblocking device.

If someone can kindly share possibilities to why this is happening that would be great.
 

Tieks

Well-Known Member

Reaction score: 117
Messages: 284

deepdive said:
Enter full pathname of shell or RETURN for bin/sh: random: unblocking device.

What happens if you press Enter after this message? This is the point where you can choose your shell, the 'random...' part just came somewhat later.
 

grahamperrin

Daemon

Reaction score: 694
Messages: 2,211

… power down. …

By force? (Long press and hold.)

Or without force? (A normal, short press on the power button.)

… stalls. I get no keyboard response …

If you have a USB optical drive, try FreeBSD-13.0-RELEASE-amd64-disc1.iso

PS if you can connect an optical drive with something other than USB: better.
 
OP
D

deepdive

New Member


Messages: 5

After further reading, I suspect the issue is with the Kernel not having the proper config for Mac 13, 3 native keyboard. I was able to connect a usb keyboard and mouse allowing me to break free from my last roadblock.
Now my challenge is to configure Wifi/Network, as the 13...-usb... installer requires network connection to download packages before completing the install. This left me scratching my head, as the bsd book express this behavior only with 13...-miniusb..image.

Nonetheless, I'm continuing my quest.

If there are suggestions, please let me know.

I will post my resolutions as they become available.
 
OP
D

deepdive

New Member


Messages: 5

By force? (Long press and hold.)

Or without force? (A normal, short press on the power button.)



If you have a USB optical drive, try FreeBSD-13.0-RELEASE-amd64-disc1.iso

PS if you can connect an optical drive with something other than USB: better.
Hi grahamperrin,

During my installation quest, I did try 14.0 as well.
As far as my install scenario goes, bsd version 12 thru 14 experienced the same frozen behavior.

Per my last reply on this thread, I suspect the Kernel not having the proper config for MacBook 13, 3. So my quest is to figure this out and hopefully build a custom Kernel to accommodate.

Please let me know if there's a better approach.

Thanks
 

grahamperrin

Daemon

Reaction score: 694
Messages: 2,211

Thanks, can you try with an optical drive?

This suggestion is based on past experience with other types of Macs, not specific to FreeBSD.
 

neel

Active Member
Developer

Reaction score: 57
Messages: 135

The thing with >2015 MacBooks is that they use a SPI Keyboard and Touchpad, which FreeBSD does not support.

You're better off buying a PC, like a Lenovo ThinkPad, Dell XPS, or HP Spectre, or even an 2015 or older MacBook if nothing else.
 
OP
D

deepdive

New Member


Messages: 5

The thing with >2015 MacBooks is that they use a SPI Keyboard and Touchpad, which FreeBSD does not support.

You're better off buying a PC, like a Lenovo ThinkPad, Dell XPS, or HP Spectre, or even an 2015 or older MacBook if nothing else.
Hi neel,

Appreciate your feedback.

While FreeBSD currently doesn't support the said MacBook, my sense is, the community tends to stick with what's most common to your point (i.e. PC laptops').
I'll continue my quest. I think there's a way to write a NEW Kernel which captures the said MacBook requirements. If by your meaning of SPI reflects this:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serial_Peripheral_Interface then I'm sure it's possible, yet not easy.

I plan to update this forum as solutions become available.

Keep me honest and let me know if you think otherwise.


Thanks again
 

neel

Active Member
Developer

Reaction score: 57
Messages: 135

I know Linux and maybe OpenBSD has SPI touchpad drivers. You could port the OpenBSD drivers.

I don't have a MacBook with me, considering I work at Microsoft, not on Windows or hardware, but still develop on the .NET/Azure stack, and my personal laptop (HP Envy Ryzen presently on CURRENT) is also a "PC". Admittedly if MSFT wasn't the name on my paycheck and I could run FreeBSD on bare metal Apple Silicon, I might not mind going there.

But since Apple started to do silicon design in-house, it meant Linux/BSD got the middle finger since Apple doesn't want to write those drivers, whereas most semiconductor manufacturers for PCs write Linux drivers nowadays.
 
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