How to Install VMware Tools on pfSense

This tutorial will show you how to install VMware Tools on a pfSense virtual firewall.

Introduction

After installing pfSense on a VMware vSphere virtual machine, you may notice VMware Tools is not automatically installed like it is on some modern versions of Linux.

VMware Tools not installed on pfSense

As you can see in the image above, VMware Tools is not installed and we can’t do a graceful shutdown or restart from the vSphere web client. This means we have to login to the firewall every time we want to shut down or restart the VM.

Let’s fix that problem by installing VMware Tools.

How to Install VMware Tools on pfSense

The following steps have been tested on pfSense Version 2.4.4-RELEASE-p3 running on VMware vSphere ESXi 6.7.

Login to pfSense.

Install VMware Tools on pfSense - Step 1

Click System then Package Manager.

Install VMware Tools on pfSense - Step 2

Click Available Packages then search for vmware. Click Install on the Open-VM-Tools package.

Install VMware Tools on pfSense - Step 3

Click Confirm to install VMware Tools.

Install VMware Tools on pfSense - Step 4

Wait for the VMware Tools installation to finish.

Install VMware Tools on pfSense - Step 5

Now when you click on the pfSense VM in the vSphere client, you should see VMware Tools is installed and the Power off button has changed to Shut down.

VMware Tools installed on pfSense

Conclusion

In this tutorial, we learned how to install VMware Tools on a pfSense virtual machine, making it possible to do a graceful shut down or restart from the vSphere web client.

Written by Tony

I'm a blogger, software developer and sysadmin, with a degree in applied computing and 16+ years experience managing IT systems. Get in touch: tony@graspingtech.com

Tags: Virtualization pfSense