Installing pfSense on APU boards over serial cable
Posted by Pawel Suwala on
This tutorial should work on Linux, OSX and Windows.
4 steps overview:
- Download memstick-serial release of the operating system you want to install.
- Burn the image on the USB drive
- Connect the USB drive and serial cable to APU board
- Start putty and connect
Now, more details:
Download pfSense image
Go to https://www.pfsense.org/download/ and select the "USB Memstick Installer" from the platform dropdown.
Burn the pfSense image on the USB drive
If you are using Linux/OSX, you should use dd to prepare the USB stick:
sudo dd if=pfSense-CE-memstick-2.4.0-RC-amd64.img of=/dev/sdg
Make sure that if= specifies the exact location of the downloaded file and of= specifies your USB device. If you make a mistake here, you might overwrite your hard drive!
If you are using Windows, use Rufus: https://rufus.akeo.ie/
Connect USB drive and serial cable to the APU board
If you have a USB-to-serial cable, it will look like on the picture. Regular null-modem cable also works, but looks slightly different.
If you are using Linux/OSX, make sure that your tty device shows up in /dev/. If you have a USB cable, you should see /dev/ttyUSB0, if you have a regular cable you should see /dev/ttyS0
Verify with ls:
root@homedesktop:# ls /dev/ttyUSB0 /dev/ttyUSB0
If you are using Windows, your Serial port will simply be called COM1
All good. Ready to connect.
Make sure you have putty installed, and start it as root:
Enter the values as you see below:
Click open and your session should start. It should look similar to this:
Wait for the USB to boot, and follow the instructions on the screen: