3.11 Devices and Device Nodes

A device is a term used mostly for hardware-related activities in a system, including disks, printers, graphics cards, and keyboards. When DragonFly boots, the majority of what DragonFly displays are devices being detected. You can look through the boot messages again by viewing /var/run/dmesg.boot.

For example, acd0 is the first IDE CDROM drive, while kbd0 represents the keyboard.

Most of these devices in a UNIX® operating system must be accessed through special files called device nodes, which are located in the /dev directory.

3.11.1 Creating Device Nodes with MAKEDEV

When adding a new device to your system, or compiling in support for additional devices, you may need to create one or more device nodes for the new devices.

Device nodes are created using the MAKEDEV(8) script as shown below:

# cd /dev
# sh MAKEDEV ad1

This example would make the proper device nodes for the second IDE drive when installed.

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