Making Your IDE CD Burner Work On FreeBSD

General Information

Many people using or wanting to use FreeBSD are not clued on to the fact that, by default, CD burning does not work on either 4.x or 5.x. This tutorial was designed to help users get their IDE CD Writing devices working under FreeBSD 5.


  1. IDE CD Writer
  2. FreeBSD 5.x
  3. Root Access
  4. Sources Installed

First off, please make sure your bios is detecting your CD-RW. This is very important to know. If it shows up, you can proceed. Under FreeBSD, CD Writers use SCSI interface modules much like the SCSI emulation in Linux was back before 2.6. Generally the SCSI emulated method has better failsafe ability, so this is not a bad thing for FreeBSD to still be using. The drawback is the standard kernel is missing a module which is necessary to use the device. The generic configs also lack this line.

Now that you are booted into your BSD box, please login as root.

# cd /usr/src/sys/i386/conf
# nano -w HOSTNAME

Under SCSI peripherals, make sure the following matches:

device          scbus           # SCSI bus (required for SCSI)
device          ch              # SCSI media changers
device          da              # Direct Access (disks)
device          sa              # Sequential Access (tape etc)
device          cd              # CD
device          pass            # Passthrough device (direct SCSI access)
device          ses             # SCSI Environmental Services (and SAF-TE)
device          atapicam

Save the file and exit.

# nano -w /etc/devfs.conf

Add the following:

perm    acd0    0666
link    acd0    cdrom
perm    pass0   0666
perm    cd0     0666
perm    xpt0    0666

# nano -w /etc/rc.conf

Add the following to the bottom:


# cd /usr/ports/sysutils/cdrdao
# make
# make install
# make clean
# cd /usr/local/bin
# chmod u+s cdrdao

I recommend using k3b for burning, it’s easy to use and efficient.

# cd /usr/ports/sysutils/k3b
# make
# make install
# make clean

You’re done. Reboot and start k3b, it should ask you how fast your writer is and you should be able to burn cd’s.

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