FreeBSD Boot Loader Hangs On Startup

Posted by: admin  :  Category: FreeBSD


The FreeBSD boot loader seems to hang at startup. The system will not respond and not boot.
Either nothing or one of the following may be printed on the system console:



boot: -D


The reasons for this are most probably

  1. Absence of a serial port on your mainboard
  2. The serial port on your mainboard is deactivated
  3. FreeBSD has a default value to use a non-existing serial port


The FreeBSD boot loader is by its nature very limited in its capabilities.

It has quiet enough intellence for reading boot blocks and starting a kernel, but it may stall if it is instructed to redirect it’s output to a non-existing or disabled serial port.

So any of these solutions may apply:

  • check your BIOS settings and enable the serial port(s)
  • disable boot loader’s serial console redirection (remove -D flag from /boot.config)
  • check and correct to boot loader’s compiled in default for the serial port if you have an usual setup

One Response to “FreeBSD Boot Loader Hangs On Startup”

  1. Srdjan Says:

    It’s also well worth checking if bios port params (port/irq) are the same as in /boot/device.hints