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Install Sophos Firewall on VMware

You can deploy a Sophos Firewall OVF image in a VMware environment.

Download the OVF image

To download the .zip file containing the Sophos Firewall OVF image for VMware, do as follows:

  1. Go to Firewall Installers.
  2. Scroll to Virtual Installers: Firewall OS for VMware.
  3. Click Download.
  4. Extract and save the image on the device with the vSphere client installed.

The .zip file contains five templates. Use the information in the following table to select the template that matches the hardware version and the virtual NIC type you want to use.

Template Hardware version NIC type Description
sf_virtual & sf_virtual_vm7 Hardware version 7 (ESXi 4). PCNet32 (Vlance). 10 Mbps Half duplex, fixed. Use this when you want backward compatibility with VMware virtual platform versions. No ethernet.virtualDev defined.
sf_virtual_vm8 Hardware version 8 (ESXi 5.0). E1000E. 1000 Mbps full duplex, auto negotiation set to On. Use this when backward compatibility isn't needed.
sf_virtual_vm8_paravirtual Hardware version 8 (ESXi 5.0). VMXNET 3. 10000 Mbps full duplex, auto negotiation set to Off. The VMXNET 3 network driver is VMware-specific and is faster than the E1000E driver. However, if VMXNET 3 gives an error in your deployment, we recommend using the E1000E image.
sf_virtual_virtualbox This template is only for use with VirtualBox installations. Don't use this with VMware.

Deploy the Sophos Firewall OVF image

To deploy the Sophos Firewall OVF image, do as follows:

  1. Sign in to the vSphere Client.

    vSphere sign in screen.

  2. Right-click the location where you want to deploy your firewall and select Deploy OVF Template.

    vSphere menu with Deploy OVF Template selected.

  3. Select Local file and click Choose files.

  4. Select the following files and click Open:

    • The OVF file you want to use.
    • sf_virtual-disk1.vmdk
    • sf_virtual-disk2.vmdk

    File explorer window with four files selected.

  5. Click Next.

  6. Enter a name for the virtual machine, select a location, and click Next.

    Deploy OVF template dialog step two, select a name and folder.

  7. Select a compute resource and click Next.

    Deploy OVF template dialog step three, select a compute resource.

  8. Review the details and click Next.

    Deploy OVF template dialog step four, review details.

  9. Select the virtual disk format and click Next.

    You can select from the following options:

    • Thick Provision Lazy Zeroed: Space required for the virtual disk is allocated during disk creation. Data remaining on the physical device isn't erased during creation, but is zeroed out on demand later on first write from the virtual machine. You can’t convert this disk to a thin disk.
    • Thick Provision Eager Zeroed: Supports clustering features such as Fault Tolerance (FT). Space required for the virtual disk is allocated at the time of creation. Data remaining on the physical device is zeroed out when the virtual disk is created. It may take longer to create disks in this format.
    • Thin Provision: Minimum space required. Use this format to save storage space. For details, go to About Virtual Disk Provisioning Policies.

    Deploy OVF template dialog step five, select storage.

  10. Select the networks you want to use and click Next.

    Deploy OVF template dialog step six, select networks.

  11. Verify the deployment settings and click Finish.

    Deploy OVF template dialog step seven, ready to complete.

Configure Sophos Firewall

To power on and configure the virtual firewall, do as follows:

  1. Click Actions.
  2. Click Power and then click Power on.

    Actions menu open with power on selected.

  3. Enter the administrator password admin.

  4. Enter into your web browser to connect to the firewall.
  5. Select Start to open the setup assistant and complete basic setup and registration.


    The setup assistant won't start if you've changed the default password from the CLI console. You can complete the basic setup manually or reset the firewall to default to use the setup assistant.

To manage your Sophos Firewall licenses and subscriptions, see Licensing.