FreeBSD The Power to Serve

FreeBSD/ppc Project

Introduction

The FreeBSD/ppc project pages contain information about the FreeBSD port to the PowerPC® architecture. As with the port itself, these pages are still a work in progress.

Status

The FreeBSD/ppc port is still a Tier 2 platform. That means it is not being fully supported by our security officer, release engineers and toolchain maintainers. However, it is supported by portmgr (package building).

The most up-to-date information about supported hardware is currently being maintained on the wiki.


Latest News

  • 05 May, 2019: FreeBSD has been tested and seems to work on the Raptor Blackbird.


Frequently Asked Questions

How can I install FreeBSD/ppc?

ISO images of FreeBSD 12.0 are available for download, for details on how to obtain these see the release announcement.

How to use ports on FreeBSD/ppc?

The easiest way to use ports on FreeBSD is to use portsnap. (if running FreeBSD 11.4 or 12.1) or Subversion (if running FreeBSD-CURRENT). Refer to the Handbook if you need assistance to use the Ports Collection.

Should I install powerpc or powerpc64?

The powerpc64 port provides a 64-bit kernel and userland, and is supported on all 64-bit CPUs. Users of 32-bit CPUs (Apple G3/G4) must use the 32-bit powerpc platform, users of 64-bit CPUs that support 32-bit operating systems (Apple G5) have a choice, and users of 64-bit CPUs that do not must use powerpc64. For those users with a choice, powerpc64 provides some additional features (the ability to use more than 2 GB of RAM and ZFS support). Like other 64-bit platforms, FreeBSD/powerpc64 supports running 32-bit binaries as well as 64-bit ones.

Who should I contact?

The FreeBSD/ppc mailing list is the main resource.


Supported Hardware

The most up-to-date information about supported hardware is currently being maintained on the wiki.

The FreeBSD/ppc port should run on any New-World Apple machine (any Apple machine with a built-in USB port), as well as the Sony Playstation 3.

People have previously reported that FreeBSD runs on the following machines:

Manufacturer Model Submitter (optional links) Notes

Apple

iMac G3 350 MHz

Martin Minkus

Rage 128VR

Apple

iMac G3 DV Special Edition

David S. Besade (dmesg)

None

Apple

iMac G3 Revision B

Peter Grehan

Rage 3D Pro 215GP, accel disabled

Apple

eMac 700 MHz

Peter Grehan

Nvidia GeForce2 MX

Apple

Mac Mini G4 1.4 GHz

Tilman Linneweh (dmesg)

None

Apple

Powerbook G4 1.33 GHz

Peter Grehan

Nvidia GeForce G5200

Apple

Aluminium Powerbook G4 1.5 GHz

Andreas Tobler

None

Apple

PowerMac G5

FreeBSD 8.0

Apple

iMac G5

FreeBSD 8.0

Apple

Xserve G5

FreeBSD 8.1

Apple

PowerMac G5 (late 2005)

FreeBSD 8.1


FreeBSD/ppc mailing list

To subscribe to this list, send an email to <freebsd-ppc+subscribe@FreeBSD.org> or visit the mlmmj interface.


Known Issues

  • On New-World Apples, there is a known bug in the boot-loader, that prevents you from loading an alternate kernel, so testing your kernel is a bit risky. When booting the loader from the Open Firmware prompt, give it a partition which is either non-existent, doesn’t have a kernel to load, or isn’t a UFS partition:

    0 > boot hd:loader hd:0

    At this point, you can set currdev and manually load a kernel:

    OK set currdev="hd":14
    OK load /boot/kernel/kernel.save