Using the Warden

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Managing Jails with The Warden

The Warden is a powerful, yet easy to use Jail Management program for PC-BSD. By using The Warden, it is possible to create "virtual" environments, which can be used to run services, such as Apache, PHP, MySql and others, in a secure manner which does not effect your desktop, and other jails. This guide is intended to help both new and advanced users with installation and everyday usage of The Warden.


The Warden is available in the PBI format. To install, first download the PBI from [], and save it to your system. Next locate and double-click the PBI to load the installation program.

The Warden PBI in Dolphin

After you enter your root password, the welcome window will appear, click next through the following screens to begin the installation.

The Warden Installation Screen #1

After extracting the files, you will be prompted for which network card you wish to run jails on. Select the NIC that you wish to use, and click OK.

The Warden Installation Screen #2

After selecting the network card, click Finish to exit the PBI installation. If you selected it, an Icon will be created on the desktop, and in Start -> System -> The Warden

Creating a Jail

The first time you start The Warden, you will be presented with the main window, which should be empty. To create your first Jail, go to File -> New Jail

The Warden Main Screen #1

To create a jail, you will need to start by entering the IP address you wish to associate to this jail, and a hostname. This IP should be available for usage, and not an existing IP on your network. You may also check the options to include both the FreeBSD source tree, and FreeBSD ports tree in this Jail. This will allow you to rebuild the world, or manually install ports into this Jail. These options will require that you have source & ports installed in /usr/src and /usr/ports respectively. If you wish to start this jail every time you reboot the system you may select the option to do so now.

The Warden Adding a Jail #1

After you have entered the IP address and hostname, you will need to set the root password, and create an initial account for this jail. When the jail is started, SSH will be enabled, so you will want to make both of these passwords secure.

The Warden Adding a Jail #2

Once you have setup the username / password for this jail, The Warden will create the jail, and setup the initial options. This may take some time, if you choose the options to include the FreeBSD source and/or ports tree.

The Warden Adding a Jail #3

Starting / Stopping a Jail

Starting a jail in The Warden GUI is very simple. Simply right-click on the jail you wish to start, and click "Start this Jail"

Warden startjail.png

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