I recently discovered that it’s surprisingly easy to customize the NetBSD boot loader banner, simply by adding some directives in the boot.cfg configuration file.

Here is the relevant part of the boot.cfg(5) manual page:

     banner   The text from banner lines is displayed instead of the standard
              welcome text by the boot loader.  Up to 12 lines can be defined.
              No special character sequences are recognised, so to specify a
              blank line, a banner line with no value should be given.

Back in 2014, I published some NetBSD ASCII logos to be used as motd or as /etc/issue, but they are higher than 12 lines so using them would either require raising the allowed lines limit (likely not a good idea), or resizing them. I then remembered I had requested some Amiga style logos for Linux and *BSD, which were released by h7 in Break’s second artpack in 2013.

So we can simply append this in /boot.cfg:

banner=         _______ ______       ___      _________  ____       __________
banner=__ _____/      //    _/___ __/   \_____\__     /_/  _//______\___     /\_______
banner=--/   _ \     //    _/    \\      _/    |/_   /\______    /    |/    /  \- -- -
banner=_/     \      \     \     //      \     |_/    /    |/    \    /     \  /
banner=\______/      /\_____\_____\______/\____      //    : ____/____      /\/
banner= \     \_____/  \     \     \     \ \  \_____/ \______/\  \   \_____/  \
banner=h7\_____\    \  /\___________\_____\/\__\    \  \     \ \______\    \dS!
banner=------ - \____\/ - --( n e t b s d )-- - \____\/ \_____\/ - --- \____\/ -------

And enjoy some stylish Amiga ASCII art after the next reboot:

         _______ ______       ___      _________  ____       __________
__ _____/      //    _/___ __/   \_____\__     /_/  _//______\___     /\_______
--/   _ \     //    _/    \\      _/    |/_   /\______    /    |/    /  \- -- -
_/     \      \     \     //      \     |_/    /    |/    \    /     \  /
\______/      /\_____\_____\______/\____      //    : ____/____      /\/
 \     \_____/  \     \     \     \ \  \_____/ \______/\  \   \_____/  \
h7\_____\    \  /\___________\_____\/\__\    \  \     \ \______\    \dS!
------ - \____\/ - --( n e t b s d )-- - \____\/ \_____\/ - --- \____\/ -------

     1. Boot normally
     2. Boot single user
     3. Drop to boot prompt

Choose an option; RETURN for default; SPACE to stop countdown.
Option 1 will be chosen in 2 seconds.

Lastly, here is the PNG version converted with Ansilove, in full Topaz glory:

NetBSD ASCII Logo