pfSense Method (Build your own router)

Here I will list instructions on how to recycle your old computer and set it up to be your pfSense box.


Choose your PC:

All you really need is an old dual core computer or better. You also need to check how many ethernet ports it has, you need 2 ethernet ports on the computer. If it only has one port then you’ll need to buy a mini PCI-E gigabit ethernet controller. It can be plugged in either the mini PCI-E slot or even the regular PCI-E slot that graphics cards usually go in. Please refer to the PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller section of the Start Here page for more information.


Prepping pfSense on USB drive:

You are also going to need get a blank USB flash drive ready.

After that you need to navigate to https://www.pfsense.org/download/ and select 32-bit or 64-bit depending on what your processor supports. For platform choose USB Memstick Installer. For console choose VGA.  Then download the pfSense installer. After downloading the installer download rufus from https://rufus.akeo.ie/. After that follow the instructions below:

Rufus Rufus is a simple but powerful utility that helps format and create bootable USB flash drives, such as USB keys/pendrives, memory sticks

  • Download Memstick pfSense image
  • Extract the .img file from the .gz archive first
  • Download Rufus from https://rufus.akeo.ie/
  • Select your USB under Device
  • Under “Create bootable disk using” click on CD-ROM icon
  • Select extracted pfSense .img that you downloaded as described above
  • Click Start and wait for image to be copied to USB.

Source: https://doc.pfsense.org/index.php/Writing_Disk_Images#Windows

Alternatively you can do this with easy2boot instead of rfus. Easy2boot is for advanced users who like to have multiple Linux distros, Windows, pfsense, and other utilities on one USB flash drive. Link for your interest, rufus would be easier to use.


Running the USB on your pfSense box:

Now on your computer you want to convert to a pfSense box… plug in this USB stick and boot from it. Follow the installation prompts from there. I recommend you keep everything default. This slightly outdated video by teksyndicate can be helpful if you’re stuck and if the pictures below didn’t help you.

Link to the helpful pfSense installation video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0JFfpG4BWI 

Step by Step Screenshot after booting from usb:

 


The Lag Killer Setup (Click to Enlarge)

Now you’re finish setting up your pfSense box. Connect your pfSense box as shown in the picture on the left if you haven’t already. Turn on one if your hardwired computers. Go to a browser. Then navigate to 192.168.1.1 in the address bar. When you’re there the default login should be:

username: admin

password: pfsense

Once you’re in you need to set your WAN and Lan ports on your dual ethernet port pfSense. One of them needs to be assigned WAN (this port connects to the modem). The other needs to be assigned LAN (this connects to the switch).

You may, depending on your ISP, also have to change your WAN mac address under “Interfaces” to match your old routers MAC address in order for you to get internet service. After that, you’re almost there! Head on over to : https://www.stoplagging.com/pfsense-method-settings/ and finish what you started!