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How do I download and install it?

The Download Page has links to all of the project's file releases

The BeFS driver is distributed in 3 different formats. Use the one that is convient for you.

Kernel Module

The driver is available as a source tarball that can be compiled into a kernel module for any 2.4 kernel. In order to compile it, you must have the headers (or full source) for the kernel you wish to run it with. Many linux distributions put the kernel source for the installed kernel in /usr/src/linux. If that is the case, you can just 'make' and 'make install' to have a working befs driver. Otherwise you will have to locate your kernel headers (debian puts them in /usr/src/kernel-headers-XXX, where XXX is the version number) and pass that information to make on the command line like so:
  • make KSRC=/usr/src/kernel-headers-XXX
  • make install KSRC=/usr/src/kernel-headers-XXX
Once you've installed the kernel module, you should be able to mount BeFS volumes using the directions below.

Debian Package

The debian package installs the same files as the tarball, but is more convient for Debian users who want to manage their kernel and modules through the Debian package system. You must have the kernel-package package installed to do this. To use it, install the befs-module-src package. Then untar the tarball the package installed (/usr/src/befs-module-src.tar.gz). Then run make-kpkg as usual (except specify the modules-image target). Telling you how to use make-kpkg is outside the scope of this document. Read the make-kpkg man page, or look in /usr/share/doc/kernel-package/ if you are confused.

Kernel Patch

The driver is also distributed as a patch against the 2.4.15 linux source tree. This patch is not needed to use the kernel module! It is for people who want to compile the driver staticly into their kernel, and any kernel tree maintainers who might want to integrate this driver.

To install the patch, go into the top-level kernel source directory and type "patch -p1 < /path/to/patchfile". Where patchfile is not the literal string "/patch/to/patchfile", but rather the actuall location of the patchfile.

To configure the kernel to include the driver, you must activate "prompt for experimental code and drivers" under the "Code maturity level" menu. Then the option to include BeFS support will be under the "Filesystems" menu.

Compile, install and reboot.

Mounting volumes with BeFS

Mount your befs partition with "mount -t befs [device] [directory]". You can also specify the following options to mount with -o:
  • uid=xxx All files on the volume will appear to be owned by user xxx
  • gid=xxx Like above, but for group rather than user
  • iocharset=xxx Which NLS charset to convert to and from.

If you are confused, read your system's manpages for mount and fstab.

Copyright © 2001-2018 Will Dyson.
Be, BeOS, and the Be and BeOS logos are registered trademarks of Be Incorporated.