pfsense 2.4.4 - how to get it in Live CD mode?

  • Hello, I was recommended to try pfSense on a linux forum. My issue is that I have very old hardware (about 12 years old) so I am not sure performance would be great. I also don't know if it has all the features I need or might be overkill since I have no experience with it. I downloaded Community Edition onto a DVD so I could try it. The website says it's a Live CD but I can't get it to work as such.

    When I boot from CD I get to a prompt screen where I have 2 seconds to choose multi user or single user boot. Then it gives SCSI read errors. I have to wait about 5+ minutes before I get to a login prompt where I don't have the credentials (multi user) or a command prompt (single user). At this point i cannot proceed any further.

    The documentation does not contain any info about how to run the Live CD.

    Any assistance would be appreciated.


  • Netgate Administrator

    pfSense has not been a live CD for a number of years now other than for rescue purposes. Where did you see that reference? We need to get that updated if it still shows it.

    What is your hardware? If you boot multiuser, the default, it should bring you straight to the installer. If it doesn't then there has been some error.


  • The reference is right on the getting started page, here: (under Hardware Selection: "You can use the Live CD or memstick to test out your hardware without installing to the hard drive" - which is exactly what I want to do!!!)

    The machine is IBM System x3400 model 7976.

    I tried this yesterday so I already forget exactly the details. I don't think it was very easy for me to get to the multi-user command prompt, but I was trying my darndest to get to the Live CD and NOT install it on my hard drive. But it prompted me for a login but I didn't have credentials.

  • Netgate Administrator

    Oh wow that's ancient. Yeah I'll get that changed. Live CD was dropped in 2.3 in 2016.

    You will need to install to something. It can be a USB stick if your system will boot USB which I expect it doesn't seem that old. But you should not see a login so... does it show FreeBSD amnesiac? That can happen if it fails to read part of the filesystem.


  • I see, that's too bad. Since I am fresh out of unused, identically-configured servers - I guess I'll continue my search. :) Thanks for the info and for updating the website, that will help others.