Firmware Updates

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A firewall running pfSense can be updated by visiting System > Firmware in 2.2.6 and earlier versions, or System > Update in 2.3 and newer. Updating to the most recent firmware is important so that security fixes, bug fixes, and other enhancements are obtained when they are available.

Only the most recent stable release of pfSense is officially supported, so updating is also important to ensure that any problems encountered may be resolved as needed.

Version 2.2.6 and earlier

Manual Updates

With versions prior to 2.3, an update can be applied manually in the WebGUI by first downloading an update image to a PC from:

or

Once the firmware file has been downloaded, click Enable Firmware Upload, browse to the update file, then click Upgrade firmware.

If Perform full backup prior to upgrade is checked, a Full Backup of the filesystem is made and placed in /root before the new firmware is applied. These backups may be restored later.

The rest of the upgrade process happens automatically. The firewall will reboot when finished.

Automatic Update

The Auto Update tab polls the pfSense servers for a new version. If one is found, click Invoke Auto Upgrade to automatically downloaded and apply the update.

If Perform full backup prior to upgrade is checked, a Full Backup of the filesystem is made and placed in /root before the new firmware is applied. These backups may be restored later.

Updater Settings

The Updater Settings tab lets sets the URL from which automatic updates are pulled. This is not typically changed from the default setting, but may be altered in special cases such as when running development snapshot images.

Console Update

Updates can also be applied from the console. From there it is possible to update from a URL directly (will be downloaded and applied) using a custom URL or the auto-update URL. If an image is uploaded manually to the firewall, it can also be applied by supplying the full path to the uploaded file.

Restore Full Backup

This feature has been removed from versions 2.3 and newer, because it's not necessarily a reliable means to restore a system.

A Full Backup of the filesystem may be restored using the Restore Full Backup tab.

The existing firewall configuration (config.xml) may be retained by checking Do not restore config.xml

Full backups are created manually or by using the Perform full backup prior to upgrade option on the Manual Update or Auto Update tabs.

Version 2.3 and newer

In 2.3 and newer versions, the update system is pkg-based, changing the available update methods. Upgrades are performed either under System > Update in the webGUI, or option 13 at the console. Manual updates are no longer available, and systems must be Internet-connected to update.