Watchguard firebox x-core-e x1000 512 ram pfsense newby needs help

  • i just happed to have a watchguard firebox x-core-e  x1000 512 mb ram  not sure what to firmware to use and hardware, ( 8GB CF or 80gb HDD), currently i i'm using dd-wrt and bored of it. so i got this watchguard from work and well like a true geek i can't pass up a free upgrade. so i wanted to know
    1. which would be better 8GB CF or 80 GB HDD
    2. how do i install the the pfsense firmware?
    3. and which firmware do i use?
    any help or documentation would be greatly appreachiated

  • Check out the watchguard topics in the pfSense Hardware forum and the pfSense documentation site at and the "versions" page at

  • Netgate Administrator

    Slightly confusing because the X1000 is a model from the original X series where as the X-Core-E is far more recent.
    Both have their own little quirks.  ;) However correctly mounting a HD in either the X-Core or X-Core-E is difficult because the hardware is not included. You either have to make up your own mounting solution or look for something suitable (information on that is available).
    There is almost no point in using an 8GB CF card if you are using the NanoBSD install. A 2GB card is fine. Also do not spend more on a 'fast' CF card that supports UDMA, pfSense will not use it and it would only speed up the boot time slightly.

    The decision comes down to whether you need a 'full install', with access to all packages, or you use an embedded install (NanoBSD image). Personally I'm using NanoBSD on a CF card.


  • i would like to thank you guys , to help eliminate the confusion i have both , as for the hardware and some testing the ribbon that comes with the xcore e actualy works with little modification all i had to modify was to add a tray and use the exhisting ribbon for the 2.5 ide hdd, works great i'm actually using as of jan 7 i had it doing a burning test for the last week and messing around with it. the x core is the real one i'm having an issue . i discovered there were two usb ports, now the memory module is it a memory module if so i don't see any cf cards in the box but i do see that lovely mini ide option without the damn cable. . any ideas as for looking on the forum i found little information that was more misleading and non informational then actual facts and directions. i'm not afraid to brick the xcore the xcore-E is working now so it's just going to be tweeking what i need . . but i have already found an option that would be a great to have being able to map multiple ip addresses to the device to be able to map to differant Vlans  go figure it's a watchguard option lol . but pfsense could use it. always to handy to be able to map those multiples.

  • Netgate Administrator

    Ah well that clears up some of the confusion!  :)

    However it does also bring up some new questions.
    The standard X-Core-E models (X550e, X750e and X1250e) don't have a hard drive ribbon cable. Though they do have IDE connections.

    The X1000 has a CF card as standard and a single DIMM slot.

    It's possible you have one of the ssl models which look almost identical but have slightly different hardware options.

    Perhaps a photo will clear things up further?


    an option that would be a great to have being able to map multiple ip addresses to the device to be able to map to differant Vlans  go figure it's a watchguard option lol . but pfsense could use it. always to handy to be able to map those multiples.

    I'm not entirely sure what you mean by this but I'd be surprised if you can't do it in pfSense.
    Certainly you can use IP aliases to map multiple public IPs internal subnets.


  • so here is a pic of the standard Xcore-E series , it has the drive tray innards, including the ribbon for a 2.5 ide hdd, which supplies power and connectivity and the ribbon i'm talking about is in the bottom left hand corner, just above the standard UDMA 133 IDE port. i have successfully upgraded 2 Xcore-E 's with the same mod's 512 mb ram, and mini ide 80gb hdd 2.5 and all the Xcore-E's come complete with with that drive expander module that you just simply keep the ribbon and tray , disgard the quick connect port interface and connect the 2.5 hdd. total time for doing the upgrad on both machines 20 minutes, upgrade process for both watchguard systems 2 hrs. pretty quick , over all i'm pretty impressed with what i've used so far, but would still rather hold my opioions to myself might even have a few suggestions.

    ![Xcore -e.JPG](/public/imported_attachments/1/Xcore -e.JPG)
    ![Xcore -e.JPG_thumb](/public/imported_attachments/1/Xcore -e.JPG_thumb)

  • i have also attached a pic of my x1000 the memory module is the one that you are saying they used instead of the cf card.

    also where could i find that paper on mapping the external IP's to internal ports.

  • Netgate Administrator

    Ah well that clears things up!
    That first pic is the inside of an X-Core box (not an X-Core-e). It will have 6 NICs.

    The second pic is the inside of a box I have not seen before but I suspect it is the older 1000 model (no X). These older Firebox II and III models had no LCD on the front and the NICs are all at the back. The firmware on these is stored on a chip on the board.


    Edit: There used to be a great page written by some helpful m0n0wall user about the Firebox II but it's gone dark.  :(  Luckily there's the way back machine!: