Category: ALIX2D13

Upgrade pfSense 2.2.6 to 2.3.1_5

Because I’m doing night-school, I don’t have that much free time any more. That’s why my pfSense firewall was still running on version 2.2.6. But now it’s school holidays, so let’s upgrade 🙂

Below some screenshots of the upgrade process…

pfSense version 2.2.6 is running:


Start the update process:





After reboot:





Update to version 2.3.1_5:




Everything went without a problem 🙂


So, finally I’m running the latest version of pfSense…

Voyage Linux on a ALIX 2D13 with USB HD

My normal desktop PC was always on – doing some tasks in the background – but the noisy fan was annoying me. And because I had a spare ALIX 2D13 lying around that was doing nothing but gathering dust, I was wondering if I could switch some tasks from my normal PC to this ALIX 2D13 and only switch my normal PC on when needed.

A CompactFlash (CF) card is used as storage/boot device on the ALIX 2D13, but for the things I had in mind, more storage is needed. For this reason I’ve connected a little USB HD to the USB port of the ALIX 2D13.


On the software side, I’ve installed voyage linux on the CF card. Voyage Linux is a Debian derived distribution, which is nice because I know how to configure Debian GNU/Linux.

On the USB HD, I’ve created some partitions. Then I’ve added the following to /etc/fstab of the ALIX 2D13:

/dev/sdb1       none            swap    	sw              		0       0
/dev/sdb2	/root		btrfs           defaults,compress,noatime       0       1
/dev/sdb3	/var		btrfs           defaults,compress,noatime       0       2
/dev/sdb4	/home           btrfs   	defaults,compress,noatime       0       3

After setting up certain things like SSH access, fetchmail, postfix, … , I have now a minimal little computer that can do some tasks in the background like fetching and sorting my email and downloading podcasts and so on.

My normal PC is now off most of the time, which is not only good for my ears, but also for my electricity bill 🙂

Upgrade pfsense 2.1.5 to 2.2.2

My firewall is a ALIX2D13 with pfsense. And, shame on me, I was still running pfsense 2.1.5. I don’t have to work today, so, time to upgrade.

Before starting the upgrade process, I opened the case of my ALIX2D13 and removed the CF-card.


Then, I’ve put the CF card in a USB card reader to make a backup with ‘dd’. Just to be safe, in case the upgrade process fails, I can easily switch back to the old version.


After the backup was ready, I’ve started the upgrade process, which worked without any problems. Finally my firewall is back up to date 🙂


OpenVPN pfSense <-> android

I was looking for a way to setup a VPN between my android-device and my home network which is connected to the internet by pfSense (on a ALIX2D13).

Because I have not enough knowledge to setup it by myself, I was googling for information and found a very good written step by step article at

The only problem was that on the client side this article doesn’t talk about android. Luckily the setup on android is not that difficult with the OpenVPN Client Export Utility. Just select Android.


On the android-device it’s just a matter of installing OpenVPN for android and importing the configuration file by selecting the file symbol.


After that, it just works™ 🙂



pfSense on ALIX 2D13

One of my favourite internet-“television”-shows is TechSnap on On TechSnap 66 there was an interesting user feedback of Felim about installing pfSense on a little ALIX 2D13 box.

[ 28m20s – 30m40s ]

So, I’ve ordered an ALIX 2D13 at Gooze with a ALIX wireless kit and installed pfSense on it.

I’m very happy with it. pfSense works very nice and adding rules to the firewall is very understandable, even for a network noob like me 😉