Initial Setup

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When you boot into FreeNAS®, the Console Setup, shown in Figure 2.5a, will appear at the end of the boot process. If you have access to the the FreeNAS® system's keyboard and monitor, this Console Setup menu can be used to administer the system should the administrative GUI become inaccessible.

NOTE: you can access the Console Setup menu from within the FreeNAS® GUI by typing /etc/netcli from Shell. You can disable the Console Setup menu by unchecking the "Enable Console Menu" in System → Settings → Advanced.

Figure 2.5a: FreeNAS® Console Setup Menu


This menu provides the following options:

  • 1) Configure Network Interfaces: provides a configuration wizard to configure the system's network interfaces.
  • 2) Configure Link Aggregation: allows you to either create a new link aggregation or to delete an existing link aggregation.
  • 3) Configure VLAN Interface: used to create or delete a VLAN interface.
  • 4) Configure Default Route: used to set the IPv4 or IPv6 default gateway. When prompted, input the IP address of the default gateway.
  • 5) Configure Static Routes: will prompt for the destination network and the gateway IP address. Re-enter this option for each route you need to add.
  • 6) Configure DNS: will prompt for the name of the DNS domain then the IP address of the first DNS server. To input multiple DNS servers, press enter to input the next one. When finished, press enter twice to leave this option.
  • 7) Reset WebGUI login credentials: if you are unable to login to the graphical administrative interface, select this option. The next time the graphical interface is accessed, it will prompt to set the root password.
  • 8) Reset to factory defaults: if you wish to delete all of the configuration changes made in the administrative GUI, select this option. Once the configuration is reset, the system will reboot. You will need to go to Storage → Volumes → Auto Import Volume to re-import your volume.
  • 9) Shell: enters a shell in order to run FreeBSD commands. To leave the shell, type exit.
  • 10) Reboot: reboots the system.
  • 11) Shutdown: halts the system.

During boot, FreeNAS® will automatically try to connect to a DHCP server from all live interfaces. If it successfully receives an IP address, it will display the IP address which can be used to access the graphical console. In the example seen in Figure 2.5a, the FreeNAS® system is accessible from

If your FreeNAS® server is not connected to a network with a DHCP server, you can use the network configuration wizard to manually configure the interface as seen in Example 2.5a. In this example, the FreeNAS® system has one network interface (em0):

Example 2.5a: Manually Setting an IP Address from the Console Menu

Enter an option from 1-11: 1
1) em0
Select an interface (q to quit): 1
Delete existing config? (y/n) n
Configure interface for DHCP? (y/n) n
Configure IPv4? (y/n) y
Interface name:  (press enter as can be blank)
Several input formats are supported
Example 1 CIDR Notation:
Example 2 IP and Netmask seperate:
Netmask:, or /24 or 24
IPv4 Address:
Saving interface configuration: Ok
Configure IPv6? (y/n) n
Restarting network: ok
You may try the following URLs to access the web user interface:

Once the system has an IP address, input that address into a graphical web browser from a computer capable of accessing the network containing the FreeNAS® system. You should be prompted to create a password for the root user, as seen in Figure 2.5b.

Figure 2.5b: Set the Root Password


Setting a password is mandatory and the password can not be blank. Since this password provides access to the administrative GUI, it should be a hard-to-guess password. Once the password has been input and confirmed, you should see the administrative GUI as shown in the example in Figure 2.5c.

Figure 2.5c: FreeNAS® Graphical Configuration Menu


If you are unable to access the IP address from a browser, check the following:

  • Are proxy settings enabled in the browser configuration? If so, disable the settings and try connecting again.
  • If the page does not load, make sure that you can ping the FreeNAS® system's IP address. If the address is in a private IP address range, you will only be able to access the system from within the private network.
  • If the user interface loads but is unresponsive or seems to be missing menu items, try using a different web browser. IE9 has known issues and will not display the graphical administrative interface correctly if compatibility mode is turned on. If you can't access the GUI using Internet Explorer, use Firefox instead.
  • If you receive "An error occurred!" messages when attempting to configure an item in the GUI, make sure that the browser is set to allow cookies from the FreeNAS® system.

This blog post describes some applications which can be used to access the FreeNAS® system from an iPad or iPhone.

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