A successful OpenBSD installation requires the OpenBSD software, supported hardware, and a bit of thought about how you want your installed machine to look and behave. A developer’s multiboot laptop will have very different requirements than a dedicated firewall, which will look completely different than a Web server. Proper preparations will make your OpenBSD installation quick and easy.
We’re going to spend a great deal of time on the requirements, considerations, and decisions you need to make before installing OpenBSD. Once you know what you have to do, the actual install process is quite simple. Many of the problems people have installing OpenBSD come from not understanding their many choices.
The instructions given in this chapter cover almost all situations, but the final word on installing OpenBSD is the install document included in the release. For example, before installing OpenBSD on an i386, you must read INSTALL.i386 for that release!