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The rest of this will be done via SSH or via the phpVirtualBox interface. One of the ISOs I transferred was the latest version of the OPNsense router at the time this was written (version 20.1). This will be the installation medium for this virtual router.

I click New in the phpVirtualBox dashboard to create a new VM. Since OPNsense is based on FreeBSD, I tell VirtualBox that it’s a FreeBSD installation. Here are my selections:

  • Name: OPNsense 20.1 x64 (CORE ROUTER)
  • Type: BSD
  • Version: FreeBSD (64-bit)
  • Memory: 1024 MB
  • Create a virtual hard disk now.
    • Format: VDI
    • Storage: Dynamically allocated
    • Size: 40 GB

After the VM is created, select it, then click Settings and configure it as follows:

  • System
    • Motherboard
      • Boot Order: Move Floppy below Hard Disk.
    • Processor
      • Processor(s): 2
      • Execution Cap: 100
  • Storage
    • Select the OPNsense ISO for the CD drive.
  • Audio: Disable
  • Network
    • Adapter 1: Enabled
      • Attached to: NAT
      • MAC: 080027F57BD6 (Refresh if there’s not one there.)
      • Promiscuous Mode: Allow All
    • Adapter 2: Enabled
      • Attached to: Bridged Adapter: enp2s0f0
      • MAC: 080027CB28AF (Refresh if there’s not one there.)
      • Promiscuous Mode: Allow All
    • Adapter 3: Enabled
      • Attached to: Bridged Adapter: enp2s0f1
      • MAC: 080027DB67CA (Refresh if there’s not one there.)
      • Promiscuous Mode: Allow All
    • Adapter 4: Enabled
      • Attached to: Host-only Adapter: vboxnet0
      • MAC: 080027DB61EA (Refresh if there’s not one there.)
      • Promiscuous Mode: Allow All

Once the system has been configured, click the Snapshots button and save a new snapshot called “Pre-Install.” Then return to the details page, and start the VM. To control the VM, you’ll need to use an RDP client such as vinagre or remmina.

Here’s how to connect:

  1. Start the VM.
  2. In the Details tab, under Display, check on which port the RDP server is listening, then use SSH port-forwarding to make the port available:
ssh -L 9000: haxys@[HAL9K IP]

With this complete, you can click the port number to connect to the RDP service.

The system will take a minute to boot, as it does a lot of auto-configuration from the start. When prompted for a login and password, use the following credentials:

  • Username: installer
  • Password: opnsense
  • Accept the console settings.
  • Select Guided Installation.
  • Select default primary disk.
  • Select GPT/UEFI mode.
  • Select default swap size.
  • Set a root password you’ll remember. (I used opnsense for the demo.)

Once this is done, it’ll try to reboot. Hit Ctrl-C to stop the reboot, return to the menu, and exit. We don’t want the system to reboot with the ISO still connected, so let’s remove it. Return to phpVirtualBox and power off the machine. Then open its settings and remove the ISO from the virtual disk drive. Then make a snapshot called “Installed, not configured.” That way, if we mess up in the configuration phase, we can start over from a fresh install.

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