Installing AdGuard Home on PFSense

Today I will show how to install AdGuard Home on PFSense. While I haven’t tested this on OPNSense. The binary for FreeBSD (PFSense) may work on HardendBSD (OPNSense).

Why use AdGuard Home?​

Screenshot-2020-10-13-102928.png


  • Pretty UI: While PFBlockerNG can do DNS Blocking, it has a much more complex UI.
  • AdGuard Home UI is easier to use
  • Built in Encrypted DNS: AdGuard Home supports build in encrypted DNS (DNS over TLS, DNS over HTTPS).
  • Different methods of querying: AdGuard Home supports Parallel Querying where multiple servers are queried at once. This is especially good if you have a unreliable network.
  • FreeBSD Support: AdGuard Home supports FreeBSD so you won’t have to virtualize anything.
  • Modify DNS TTL to keep DNS Records in cache for longer.
Screenshot-2020-10-13-103046.png

Step 1: Change the Port of your PFSense DNS Resolver​


1.png

2.png


Login to your PFSense Firewall web UI and go to Service> DNS Resolver and change the "Listen Port" from port 53 to some other port, I chose 6666. Set Network Interfaces to localhost, there is no need for the pfsense resolver to listen on LAN interface.

To enable rDNS lookups and hostname lookups for devices on your LAN, enable " DHCP Registration" and " Static DHCP" in DNS Resolver settings.

Step 2: Go to AdGuard home releases page and get the FreeBSD Version:​

adguardreleases.png


Go to Releases · AdguardTeam/AdGuardHome

Then get the latest version of AdGuard for FreeBSD (as PFSense runs on FreeBSD). Most likely you will have 64Bit version of PFSense so you need AdGuardHome_freebsd_amd64.tar.gz . However if you have 32 Bit PFSense you need AdGuardHome_freebsd_386.tar.gz.

Step 3: SSH into your PFSense box​

Right click and copy the link of the release.

SSH into your PFSense box using Putty or SSH on WSL and enter the following commands:

Code:
cd /
mkdir opt
cd opt
fetch https://github.com/AdguardTeam/AdGuardHome/releases/download/v0.104.0-beta2/AdGuardHome_freebsd_amd64.tar.gz

Make sure to change the url in fetch to the one you got on Step 2 to get latest version.
Code:
tar -xvf AdGuardHome_freebsd_amd64.tar.gz
cd AdGuardHome
./AdGuardHome

This command executes AdGuardHome so that we can do initial configuration in the browser.

Step 4: Initial Configuration​


Screenshot-2020-10-13-113123.png

Go to your router URL with port 3000 on your browser. In my case its http://192.168.5.1:3000 . Replace 192.168.5.1 to your PFSense Address.

It should open the web interface of AdGuard Home.

Click on Get Started.

Now you will see a screen asking to setup interfaces for AdGuard UI and Resolver to run on. You need to set both the Admin Interface and DNS Server Interface to your LAN Interface. In my case it is igb3. It will also show the IP of the Interface next to it to help you identify easily. In my case it is 192.168.5.1 which is the IP Address of my router.
Screenshot-2021-01-07-134022.png

Set the same interface for DNS Server.

Also, make sure to change the Port of web interface from 80 to something that is unlikely to be used on the network. Lets say port 12838. Choose any high port that isn’t likely to conflict with your other applications.

Next enter a username and password for your AdGuard Home. Make sure to use a strong password.

Click on Next and then Open Dashboard.

Now that initial configuration of AdGuard is done. Go back to PFSense SSH and terminate AdGuard using Ctrl+C.

Step 5: Installing some extra packages:​

To make sure that AdGuard gets filters without errors, you will need to install ca_root_nss

Run this command on the PFSense SSH
Code:
pkg install ca_root_nss

Next you will need to install screen so that you can run AdGuard even when ssh is closed.

Code:
pkg install screen

Lets also install nano text editor so we can write and edit simple text files.

Code:
pkg install nano

Install shellcmd PFSense Package from WebUI. Its under System>Package Manager>Installed Packages:
Screenshot-2020-11-14-103402.png


Step 6: Making AdGuard Home start on boot:​

Go to Services>shellcmd and click Add

Command: /usr/local/bin/screen -S AdGuardHome_screen -d -m /opt/AdGuardHome/AdGuardHome
Shellcmd Type: shellcmd
Description: AdGuard

Screenshot-2020-11-14-104100.png

Click Save
Reboot PFSense and AdGuardHome will start up.

Step 7: Set Filters and DNS Resolvers for AdGuard Home:​



Go to the Web UI of AdGuard Home. It is at http://192.168.5.1:12838 . Where 192.168.5.1 is the IP of your PFSense and 12838 is the Port of Web Interface of AdGuard which we set in Step 4.

Login with your username and password which you set in Step 4.

Now go to Settings>DNS Settings

Use the upstream DNS Server of your choice. These are my resolvers

Code:
https://dns10.quad9.net/dns-query
tls://dns.google
tls://1.1.1.1
https://doh.opendns.com/dns-query
Screenshot-2020-10-13-120812.png

Find more Encrypted DNS Resolvers at DNS Privacy Public Resolvers - DNS Privacy Project - Global Site

Set the query mode to “Parralel Requests” for faster queries.

By default AdGuard Home only uses “AdGuard DNS filter” however you can add your own filters such as

https://www.malwaredomainlist.com/hostslist/hosts.txt

https://raw.githubusercontent.com/StevenBlack/hosts/master/hosts

and enable the filters Disabled by default.

However, keep in mind, higher the number of domains higher the likelihood of false positives.

Step 8: Set PFSense to use the AdGuard DNS:​


Go to System> General Setup in PFSense Web Interface and set the DNS Server to 192.168.5.1 and remove any other resolvers.
Screenshot-2020-10-13-121135.png

That’s it AdGuard Home is up and running on PFSense


Step 9: Test AdGuard​



Go to your PFSense SSH and type in:

Code:
dig @192.168.5.1 google.com

Where 192.168.5.1 is the IP of your router

It should output the IP Address of Google.
dig @192.168.5.1 google.com

; <<>> DiG 9.16.1-Ubuntu <<>> @192.168.5.1 google.com
; (1 server found)
;; global options: +cmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 946
;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 1, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 0

;; QUESTION SECTION:
;google.com. IN A

;; ANSWER SECTION:
google.com. 10 IN A 74.125.130.147

;; Query time: 0 msec
;; SERVER: 192.168.5.1#53(192.168.5.1)
;; WHEN: Thu Jan 07 16:34:08 IST 2021
;; MSG SIZE rcvd: 44

On Windows you can do

Code:
nslookup google.com 192.168.5.1

to test the resolver
 
Last edited:

JB701

Messages
1,972
Location
Delhi
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TriplePlay/Excitel
I tried setting up encryption on AdGuard Home today. It wasn't working with Letsencrypt on Android.

But after renewing cert with "--preferred-chain "ISRG Root X1" --force-renewal", it connects

Make sure ISRG Root X1 is in double quotes

@royalroy
 
Last edited:
Messages
468
Location
Bolpur, WB
ISP
Alliance BB (AS23860)
Thank you all for your suggestions. I have set it up with a sectigo SSL certificate for now. I'll try these once it expires. But the issue will likely be resolved by then.
 

JB701

Messages
1,972
Location
Delhi
ISP
TriplePlay/Excitel
that is strange, its working for me. shows me "sign in to network" prompt on devices.

try enabling DNS Resolver on a different port, I chose 6666 on localhost

2.png


Go to Settings>DNS Settings on AdGuard Home and set 127.0.0.1:6666 as the Private resolver

2.png
 

JB701

Messages
1,972
Location
Delhi
ISP
TriplePlay/Excitel
stop adguard home from shell using "pkill AdGuardHome"

follow same steps as in original guide but fetch the edge tar.gz file instead

though i don't think captive portal issue is because of the stable version. have you tried stopping adguard home and using PFSense DNS Resolver to see if it works?
 
Messages
8
Location
Philippines
ISP
PLDT
thank you. I will try that. You're the best!

EDIT:
Just a little question,

is AdGuardHome in pfsense free? or there is a limit?
 
Last edited:
Messages
8
Location
Philippines
ISP
PLDT
stop adguard home from shell using "pkill AdGuardHome"

follow same steps as in original guide but fetch the edge tar.gz file instead

though i don't think captive portal issue is because of the stable version. have you tried stopping adguard home and using PFSense DNS Resolver to see if it works?

I stopped adguard home and used pfsense DNS resolver and the captive portal works.
 
Messages
8
Location
Philippines
ISP
PLDT
yes, i am using https captive portal. Can that be the reason? How to make it work while using https?

The DNS of my pfsense under System>General setup is already the IP of my pfsense as per you guide.

EDIT:
I managed to make it work. I just port forward DNS to 127.0.0.1 on wifi interface. Now I used the "pkill AdGuardHome". How am i going to start again AdGuardHome without restarting the pfsense?
 
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