Installing the UniFi Controller on FreeNAS

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noteThis Page was written with FreeNAS 9.10-STABLE in mind, and may not work correctly with other versions or distributions.

Ubnt logo only.png Note: This Page was written with UniFi Controller version 5.4.14 in mind, and may not work correctly with other versions.


This artical will guide you through installing the Unifi Controller within a new FreeBSD jail, on a FreeNAS 9.3-STABLE server. You are required to have root access to the FreeNAS server for this install.

Creating and Setting up the FreeNAS Jail

Create a new jail

Create a new jail on your FreeNAS system, default options are fine. You may set a static address or use DHCP.

Set the Jails Root Password (Optional)

Note Note: By default the root password in the jail is not set. You must set it before you may log in via ssh. This password is unrelated to any password within the FreeNAS server.

To set the root password, run passwd and enter your new root password.

Enable the SSH Server (Optional)

Modify the /etc/rc.conf file and change sshd_enable="NO" to sshd_enable="YES"

sed -i .bkp 's/sshd_enable=\"NO\"/sshd_enable=\"YES\"/g' /etc/rc.conf

Then enable root access via SSH.

sed -i .bkp 's/#PermitRootLogin no/PermitRootLogin yes/g' /etc/ssh/sshd_config

And lastly start/restart the sshd daemon.

service sshd start

Installing UniFi Controller v5

From, inside your new jail, via a ssh session or shell prompt as root run...

Update the FreeBSD packet file

freebsd-update fetch

Install Java8JDK

Install Java openjdk8 on the jail.

pkg install -y openjdk8

Configure openjdk8 to work within the jail.

echo "fdesc   /dev/fd         fdescfs         rw      0       0" > /etc/fstab
echo "proc    /proc           procfs          rw      0       0" >> /etc/fstab

Install MongoDB

Install mongodb on the jail.

pkg install -y mongodb

Then set mongodb to load on system boot.

echo 'mongod_enable="YES"' >> /etc/rc.conf

Install Unifi Controller

Finally let's install the actual controller software.

setenv BATCH yes
portsnap fetch extract
cd /usr/ports/net-mgmt/unifi5/
make install clean
Note Note: You shouldn't be prompted for any optional packages during the build process, but if you are, the default options will all work for the build.

Once the build is complete, you may start the controller.

echo 'unifi_enable="YES"' >> /etc/rc.conf
service unifi start

Setting up the UniFi Controller

Note Note: It may take a minute or two for the service to start, give it time

First go to the IP address of your Unifi host, ie: https://<IP-Address>:8443 You will be prompted to accept an Invalid SSL Certificate before accessing the new site.

Configuring the UniFi Controller

The config may be found at /usr/local/share/java/unifi/

Updating UniFi Controller

To update UniFi to the current stable version, first check to see if a new version has been published in FreeBSD ports by viewing the UniFi5 ports Makefile file. Check if the version is the newer then the version you are currently running.

Assuming you need an update, run the following command on your FreeNAS Jail.

portsnap fetch update && cd /usr/ports/net-mgmt/unifi5/ && make deinstall reinstall clean && \
service unifi restart