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Upgrading pfSense Software Installations

A firewall running pfSense® software can be updated by visiting System > Update. Updating to the most recent version of pfSense software is important so that security fixes, bug fixes, and other enhancements are obtained when they are available.

Only the most recent stable release of pfSense is officially supported, so updating is also important to ensure that any problems encountered may be resolved as needed.


Before performing an upgrade, read through the pfSense Upgrade Guide.

If any problems occur during the upgrade process, consult Upgrade Troubleshooting for assistance.

Current Versions of pfSense

In 2.3 and newer versions, the update system is based on pkg(8).


Firewalls must be connected to the Internet to update.

Updating in the WebGUI

Navigate to System > Update in the WebGUI to check for an available update and to perform the update. The update check on the dashboard also leads to this page.

This page, as well as the Update Settings tab, also can change the branch used for obtaining updates.

Update Branches

The Branch option on System > Update on the System Update and Update Settings tab controls the source of updates for the firewall. Generally there are at least two branches, but there may be more depending on the status of the current release.

Latest Stable Version

The most recent release of the stable branch. This is the update branch which should be used in nearly all cases.

Latest Development Snapshots

The most recent snapshot of the development branch. This has the most current code and binaries, but may be unstable since it is still in active development. Generally this is used in labs for testing bug fixes and new features.

Legacy Stable Version

The most recent legacy release, which is the previous release branch. This is generally one version behind, for example 2.3.x is legacy while 2.4.x is active. Depending on the timing of releases, this legacy branch may or may not be supported.

There may be additional branches, for example, branches for release candidates or for legacy, development. These may come and go as development changes and releases happen.

Updating from the Console

From the console or via SSH, option 13 at the menu can be used to trigger an update.

Additionally, from the command line, the pfSense-upgrade command will upgrade the firewall.

Version 2.2.x and earlier

These instructions remain for reference when updating an older version of pfSense to a supported release. In many cases, it is much easier to take a backup, reinstall with a current version, and then restore the configuration.


When upgrading from 2.2.x to a current version, the firewall must first stop at the latest pfSense 2.3.x release before it can proceed to pfSense 2.4.x or later. This is due to the nature of the updates changing from single archives to pkg(8).

Automatic Update

The Auto Update tab polls the pfSense servers for a new version. If one is found, click Invoke Auto Upgrade to automatically downloaded and apply the update.