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Here in this tutorial, we use the FreeNAS ISO image to create a FreeNAS VM (virtual machine) using the VirtualBox on Windows, Linux, and MacOS.

And restart the system and see if that solves your problem. If not, please also set: hw.mps.disablemsi=1. And let us know if it worked. (BTW we in principal recommend running FreeNAS on bare metal hardware instead of virtualized, do you have any specific reason to run it virtualized?).

FreeNAS is the open source NAS operating system based on FreeBSD and doesn’t need any introduction. Using the FreeNAS, a user can create its own personal NAS box using some old computer or even a virtual machine. Moreover, if you forward your local IP address of the FreeNAS to the public IP (to access remotely) of yours then you can use it as a kind of personal cloud server where you can install and access different kind of software like plex media server, WordPress and more. It comes with ZFS to protect, store, backup, all of your data. The ZFS is an enterprise-ready open source file system, RAID controller, and volume manager. FreeNAS comes with features like File Sharing (NFS, FTP, AFP, iSCSI, WebDAV), Web Interface, Data Protection, Snapshots, Replication, Encryption, Backup services (Windows Backup, rsync, Apple Time Machine, TrueOS Life Preserver, and Plugins.

  1. Boot the FreeNAS installer on the computer you want to install it on and go through the wizard. If you want to install FreeNAS on a USB flash drive or compact flash card — this is recommended — insert the removable device into your computer. Select Install/Upgrade when the installation wizard appears and select the drive you want to install.
  2. The FreeNAS installer set up will boot up. ( For the installation steps you can refer to this link) When the installer asks you to choose the hard drive to install the FreeNAS at that time select your USB drive. Like we did in the following screenshot. From there follow the guided steps of installation. Once the installation is done.
  3. Hi, so I am deploying a FreeNAS server at my school for A/V reasons and we are having issues with FreeNAS not being able to grab an IP from the NIC. The bios detects it fine and everything. I am thinking that I need to manually install the driver for it. The NIC is a HP NC375i Quad-port NIC (so w.
  4. It is highly recommended to install the FFmpeg community package. BubbleUPnP Server will detect it and automatically make use of its ffmpeg binaries. DSM 7 # Synology changed the format of package for DSM 7. There is no plan for a DSM 7 package at this time. However, if your Syno NAS supports it, you can run BubbleUPnP Server via Docker.

Also, point to be noted that the FreeNAS installation needs a separate hard drive for storing the data apart from the device hard drive where you are about to install it. This means if you have only drive attached to PC or virtual machine you only able to install the FreeNAS and for storing any data you require a separate one. Moreover, before using the FreeNAS as the commercial or permanent solution you can install it on the USB storage/pen drive too; so that you can use your computer hard drive for storage purpose.

Other best way to test or use the FreeNAS is the Virtual environment where you can install FreeNAS for testing and learning purpose. But as per the official website for the commercial or production purpose, the installation of FreeNAS on the virtual machine is not recommended.

To install and run the FreeNAS VM (Virtual machine) on the Virtual box you have to create a virtual machine that fulfils the following minimum requirements of FreeNAS OS:

  • FreeNAS ISO image
  • 8GB RAM at least.
  • Minimum 8GB virtual disk to install and boot the FreeNAS OS
  • One spare virtual drive at least 4GB to store content.

Let’s start with the step by step tutorial to install the FreeNAS virtual machine on VirtualBox:

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For this tutorial, we used VirtualBox and FreeNAS 11.2 ISO image. And the process of installation will be the same for Windows, Linux or MacOS.

Step 1: Download the FreeNAS ISO image:

First of all, go to the and download the open source FreeNAS operating system ISO image. You can also use this link: During performing this tutorial the latest version was Freenas 11.2.

Step 2: Download VirtualBox

If you already have VirtualBox then skip this step. Otherwise, use this link (download) to get VirtualBox for Windows, Linux or MacOS. On Linux Like Ubuntu OS, you can install the Virtual Box with just one command on command terminal.

Step 3: Create VM (Virtual Machine) for FreeNAS on VirtualBox.

After downloading and installing the VirtualBox, its time to create a Virtual machine for FreeNAS.

1. Open the Virtual Box.

2. Click on the New button.

3. Enter some name for your FreeNAS virtual machine and the from type drop-down box select the Other and Version- Other/Unkown(64-bit).


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4. Set the Memory size, we set it 4Gb, here because of our testing system limitations, but recommended is 8GB. So, if you have that much free memory on your machine then go ahead and assign it for your FreeNAS.

5. Now Click on the Create button.

6. Create a Virtual Hard Disk for your FreeNAS VM. At least 4Gb should be there but we assigned it 57GB and you can assign according to the availability on your machine.

7. Once the Drive created click on the Create button.

8. Now select you created FreeNAS virtual machine from the left side and then click on the Settings option given in the menu of the VirtualBox.

9. From the Settings click on the Storage option and the on the CD icon given on the right as shown in the below given screenshot.

10. Click on the Choose Virtual Optical Disk File option and browse the FreeNAS ISO image downloaded above.

11. Now you can see the FreeNAS ISO image will be showing under the Storage Devices.

As I told you above that we can’t use the hard drive for storage where we installing the FreeNAS. SO, for storage, we need to attach one other virtual hard drive to our FreeNAS VM.

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12. For that under the Storage click on the Controller: IDE option and then on the plus icon + hard disk icon.

13. Click on the Create New Disk button

14. Set the Disk Space you want to assign to the storage of your FreeNAS and then click on the Create button.

15. Now click on the OK button.

Step 4: Network Configuration

Once you did with the Virtual Harddrive configuration click on the Network option and select the Attached to: Bridged Adapter. You need to select this option because only then you can communicate the FreeNAS from the host or other computer presents in your local network.

Press the OK button.

Now, Select your FreeNASVM from the left side pan of the VirtualBox and then click on the START button given in the Menu.

Step 5: Install FreeNAS on VirtualBox as Virtual Machine.

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Press Enter button to start the installation of the FreeNAS.

If you have assigned a lower amount of RAM to your system as recommended then you will see a message pointing that. Just select the YES and press the ENTER.

Now select the Install/Upgrade option using Keyboard and press Enter.

Use the arrow keys and spacebar button from the keyboard to select the drive in which you want to install the FreeNAS.

Select the YES to erase the partition and start the FreeNAS installation.

FreeNAS has both the capabilities of booting either from BIOS or UEFI mode. Select the Boot via Bios option.

During the installation, the FreeNAS will ask you to set the root password.

Once the installation is done. Press the Enter button and remove installation media which is a FreeNAS.ISO image by right-clicking on the CD icon given at the bottom of your VirtualBox.

After the installation has done you will see a couple of options including the IP address that you can use to access the FreeNAS in your browser (web interface).

In case you want to change the root password:

Type ‘7′ from your keyboard and press the Enter button. And type the new password you want to assign to your FreeNAS box.

Step 6: Access FreeNAS web user interface.

To access the web user interface of the FreeNAS just type the IP address which shown on the Console setup of the FreeNAS.

For example, In our case, the IP address is

When you enter the IP address you will see the login FreeNAS login screen.

Enter the Username- root, and password- You set in your case.


Other Resources to See:

The FreeNas which all we know is the open-source NAS operating based on FreeBSD. It helps millions of people to turn their old PC system into a personal NAS box without spending money. So, if you want to try it before installing it to your main system or server you can test it on Virtual Machine: Install FreeNAS on VirtualMachine.

However, in this article, we let you know how to create a FreeNAS bootable USB drive and then use that to install FreeNAS on any other Pen or USB drive.

1: Download the Universal USB Installer Tool

First of all download the Universal USB Installer Tool. We use it to write the FreeNAS.iso image to our Pendrive to make a bootable FreeNAS USB drive. The download link ishere.

2: Get FreeNAS.ISO image

Second thing, we require is the FreeNAS.ISO image. If you already have this then move to the next step otherwise here is the link to download.

3: Run the portable USB maker Universal USB

After downloading run the Universal USB Installer tool, it is a portable USB maker. Just Double click on the Universal USB Installer tool .exe file.

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4: Install Freenas on USB

Click on the Dropdown box and select Try Unlisted Linux ISO (GRUB). Select the downloaded FreeNAS.ISO file by clicking Browse button. After that select the USB drive from the right side drop-down box. Then Choose Fat32 Format.

Now click on the Create button. It will take a few minutes to the tool to create a bootable FreeNAS USB drive.

5: Boot with FreeNAS bootable USB drive

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Once it has done! Let the FreeNAS bootable USB drive as it is and attach one more blank pen drive where we will install the FreeNAS OS.

Note: You can’t install FreeNAS on the same bootable USB drive. You should have one spare which we will use to install the FreeNAS bootable and other system files.

  1. Now I assumed that you have attached both USB drives (the one you FreeNAS bootable we made above and other one blank at least 8GB) to your computer system.
  2. Restart the PC and boot it using the FreeNAS bootable thumb drive which created above.
  3. As soon as the PC booted up with the FreeNAS, you will get a black window with the option to boot the FreeNAS.
  4. Press Enter.
  5. The FreeNAS installer set up will boot up. ( For the installation steps you can refer to this link)

When the installer asks you to choose the hard drive to install the FreeNAS at that time select your USB drive. Like we did in the following screenshot.

From there follow the guided steps of installation.

Once the installation is done. Remove the FreeNAS bootable drive but not the drive in which you installed it.

Whenever you want to use the FreeNAS simply boot your computer with the drive in which you have installed the FreeNAS. Even you can use it as a portable drive to run the FreeNAS on any other system of your home or friend.

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