Upgrading to new system

  • I think I already know the answer to this, but before I take down my pfsense system, I want to be sure.

    I have an existing system and am upgrading to a new system.  Both versions will be the same.  I have done a lot of configuring on the old system, rules, traffic shaping, etc.

    Can I just backup the existing config, build the new system, and restore the config, so I don't have to rewrite and reconfigure everything?


  • Yes.

    It's also a great idea to backup the system before embarking on major changes, if you happen to be mortal and prone to screwing up. Just name them so you know what the state was.

    I just used my settings backup to restore my machine that failed to upgrade (possibly becasue of the "new backup checkbox" in the upgrade dialog, which is NOT the backup in question - possibly becasue the gods have not been smiling upon me lately) and the .xml backup worked perfectly, twice (second time was me scewing up a setting the next day that locked me out, where it was faster to reset to factory defaults from the console and reapply the xml backup than it would have been to try and figure out how to undo the change from the console directly.)

    A few months ago when I had the temerity to start playing with the traffic shaper (one of the less well documented parts of the system, IME) I had the sense to make a backup first, and that saved my bacon when all traffic stopped…

  • Netgate Administrator

    Unless your new box has similar NICs to the old box (share the same drivers) you will have to reassign the interfaces at first boot after restoring your config.
    An alternative to that, if your new box has different NICs, is to manually edit your config file (after copying it  ;)) the change the old interface names to those recognised in the new box. That can be easier to do in some circumstances but is also prone to editing errors.


  • If you have diff NICs, it'll prompt you to re-assign them after restoring the config. Other than that it'll work seamlessly.

    I prefer manually changing the NIC assignments in the XML before restoring the config, but that's probably mostly a bias of working with systems that tend to be more complex than the average user's, with more NICs, VLANs, etc. and it's faster for me to update the XML than click through the assignments post-restore.

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