How to Upgrade FreeNAS 9.x to 9.3

FreeNAS 9.3 has been released about a month ago. It comes with NFSv4 and VMware VAAI support which are great enhancements for a virtualization platform. As I am using it on my N40L in my Homelab I decided to upgrade my box to FreeNAS 9.3

FreeNAS 9.3 Features

  • NFSv4 support
  • VMware VAAI support
  • WebDAV support
  • iSCSI sequently read performance increased

Upgrade FreeNAS

  1. Download latest GUI_Upgrade.txz and GUI_Upgrade.txz.sha256.txt from download.freenas.org
    Link for 9.3: download.freenas.org/9.3/latest/x64/
  2. Backup FreeNAS configuration (System > Settings > General > Save Config)
    upgrade-freenas-create-backup
  3. Backup your Data. (If the Upgrade fails, you can rollback to the previous version so your ZFS Data should be safe)
  4. Stop Sharing Services so that there are no files under access during the upgrade
    upgrade-freenas-stop-services
  5. Start the Upgrade (System > Settings > Advanced > Save Config)
    upgrade-freenas-firmware-update
  6. Place the temporary upgrade files to your ZFS
    upgrade-freenas-temp-place
  7. Select the GUI_Upgrade.txz File and copy the SHA256 checksum from GUI_Upgrade.txz.sha256.txt
    upgrade-freenas-file-and-sha
  8. Press Apply Update
  9. Wait until the Update is finished.
    upgrade-freenas-apply-update
  10. Your FreeNAS will reboot automatically when the update has been finished
    upgrade-freenas-reboot
  11. Don't get nervous at this point. This step can take up to 40 minutes and your NAS will reboot twice during the reconfiguration. You can see what happens on the console.
    upgrade-freenas-post-install
  12. The Update was successful. FreeNAS is now at version 9.3 and all shares are back online.
    upgrade-freenas-finished

Upgrade ZFS

You can optionally upgrade the ZFS Pool to the latest version. I suggest to wait a couple of days to verify that everything works as expected because if you upgrade ZFS there is no way back to a previous FreeNAS version.

To upgrade the ZFS Pool simply hit the green arrow button.
upgrade-freenas-upgrade-zfs
upgrade-freenas-upgrade-zfs2
The upgrade only takes seconds and is non-disruptive.

  1. Hi, have you experienced any performance problems running FreeNas 9.3 on the N40L hardware? I posted this question on the forums but have not had a reply. I appreciate it's older hardware but wondered if it would suffice for my usage case.

    • No performance issue here. I'm using it as my homestorage since month. The performance is how I would expect it from that hardware.
      The only issue might be when it comes to sync writes to NFS on ZFS (see here).

      FreeNAS on N40L as backup target and for Media Streaming is definitively no problem. That's exactly what I'm doing.

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