Netgate SG-1000 microFirewall

Author Topic: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?  (Read 309 times)

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Offline roveer

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Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« on: November 28, 2017, 09:59:29 am »
I'm setting up a pfsense, (a couple actually) on a i7 pc and it will have a local console screen.  Right now I believe it's running the screen at 640x480 and the text is very fuzzy and in places broken.  I did a little searching determined that a UEFI boot would fix it, but I don't believe pfsense supports uefi mode but wants legacy bios instead. 

So,

Is there any way to force the console into a higher resolution?  I did read something about vidconf and tried a few command that didn't work.  I don't think the video files are part of the distribution. 

Can anyone shed any light on how I could possible increase the resolution so I don't have a fuzzy mess as a console screen.  Many thanks.

Roveer

Offline Grimson

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2017, 10:13:19 am »
I did a little searching determined that a UEFI boot would fix it, but I don't believe pfsense supports uefi mode but wants legacy bios instead. 

Knowing is better than believing, and I know that pfSense supports UEFI since version 2.4.0.

Offline roveer

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2017, 10:35:38 am »
Well, that's why I was cautious in my statement about UEFI support.  I based it on search results I was reading that were saying UEFI support was low priority and would probably not happen.  Guess that changed somewhere along the way.

I tried and was unable to boot the CE-memstick-2.4.1-RELEASE-amd64 on a USB key.  Now that I know it's supported, I'll give it another try after clearing out the HD and switching over to UEFI.

Thanks for the information.

Roveer

Offline roveer

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2017, 12:37:45 pm »
I tried again, the Dell Optiplex 7010 won't boot the USB pfSense installer when in UEFI mode.  Any ideas?  I did see another post of a user having the exact same problem on the exact same model.  I think he was saying it was something with FreeBSD.  I'll probably investigate a little further and if I find no fix I'll just stick with bios boot mode, ugly fuzzy screen and all.

Roveer

Offline slim2016

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2017, 01:20:46 pm »
What exactly happens when you try to boot the usb drive in UEFI mode? Any errors?

Offline roveer

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2017, 06:58:05 pm »
What exactly happens when you try to boot the usb drive in UEFI mode? Any errors?

Blank screen.

I replied in my other topic https://forum.pfsense.org/index.php?topic=140715.0 with my findings.  I think it's a FreeBSD issue and might only be on certain hardware.  My problem exactly matched the one I referenced including the exact same Dell computer.

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Offline roveer

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2017, 07:00:12 pm »
Is there anyway I can change the console resolution using linux commands?  Setting the system up as UEFI is not going to work for the Dell 7010 system.  So I'm left trying to do what I initially set out to do.  Change the console screen resolution once pfSense is running. 

Roveer
« Last Edit: November 29, 2017, 01:16:32 am by roveer »

Offline droeders

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2017, 03:01:31 pm »
Is there anyway I can change the console resolution using linux commands?

First of all, pfSense is not Linux - it's based on FreeBSD.

Setting the system up as UEFI is not going to work for the Dell 7010 system.  So I'm left trying to do what I initially set out to do.  Change the console screen resolution once pfSense is running. 

I can't say I've ever done this, but the 'vidcontrol' command looks like it might do what you want.  I assume pfSense ships with this executable, but I don't have access to a machine to check.

Offline roveer

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2017, 10:14:11 am »
Is there anyway I can change the console resolution using linux commands?

First of all, pfSense is not Linux - it's based on FreeBSD.

Setting the system up as UEFI is not going to work for the Dell 7010 system.  So I'm left trying to do what I initially set out to do.  Change the console screen resolution once pfSense is running. 

I can't say I've ever done this, but the 'vidcontrol' command looks like it might do what you want.  I assume pfSense ships with this executable, but I don't have access to a machine to check.

You are correct, pfSense is not Linux, I used the term generically.  I would have received a negative response whether I called it Linux or Unix so I can't win on that one.  FreeBSD is a free and open-source Unix-like operating system descended from Research Unix via the Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD). Although for legal reasons FreeBSD cannot use the Unix trademark, it is a direct descendant of BSD, which was historically also called "BSD Unix" or "Berkeley Unix".

Yes, vidcontrol is the command I have been toying around with.  For whatever reason (to many late nights), I couldn't think of the name of the command when I made the post, but vidcontrol is what I had come up with.

I have been unable to craft the proper syntax to get vidcontrol to do much of anything.  Not sure whether it's missing profiles or just that I don't know what I'm doing with the command but that was where I left off.

At this point I'm just going to live with the fuzzy console.  Most everything is done though the web gui anyway and ssh takes care of the rest.  On the odd occasion I might actually need the VGA console, I'll just live with it.

Roveer

Offline jimp

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2017, 12:52:36 pm »
There are several ways you can adjust it, but you need to be careful as some of the places the settings go will be wiped out on upgrade. Mostly you need to look at the FreeBSD man page for the vt or sc console.

For example:

With the default VT console:
/boot/loader.conf.local:
Code: [Select]
hw.vga.textmode=0
kern.vt.fb.default_mode="1024x768"

And then you can change fonts by invoking something like this:
Code: [Select]
vidcontrol -f vgarom-thin-8x16
Other fonts can be found in /usr/share/vt/fonts/

If you prefer the older sc console you can get some extra flexibility there, too, for example:
/boot/loader.conf.local:
Code: [Select]
kern.vty=sc
/boot/device.hints:
Code: [Select]
hint.sc.0.flags="0x180"
hint.sc.0.vesa_mode="279"

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Offline Gertjan

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Re: Possible to change the text resolution of the console?
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2017, 01:50:51 pm »
Console access is nice to have for an initial setup. Did that last decade. A minimal 640 x 400 will do just fine for that purpose.
Now i use the SSH access, and a tool like Putty. Their is no limit for a "screen size" - and very easy to 'setup'  :)