How to Install OpenVAS on Ubuntu 16.04 / Ubuntu 14.04

OpenVAS known as Open Vulnerability Assessment System is an open source vulnerability suite to run the test against servers for known vulnerabilities using the database (Network Vulnerability Tests), OpenVAS is a free software, its components are released under GNU General Public License (GNU GPL). Here is the small guide to install OpenVAS on Ubuntu 16.04 / Ubuntu 14.04.

Setup Repository:

Offical OpenVAS packages are available on launchpad. Issue the following command to add OpenVAS PPA on your machine.

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mrazavi/openvas

Update your system repository cache.

sudo apt-get update

Install & Setup OpenVAS:

OpenVAS repository includes newer packages for OpenVAS 9. If you do not mention the version name in apt-get install command, you may end up installing OpenVAS 8 instead of OpenVAS 9 on your system.

### OpenVAS 9 ###

sudo apt-get install -y openvas9

### OpenVAS 8 ###

sudo apt-get install -y openvas
OpenVAS 8 is only tested on Ubuntu 16.04  and Ubuntu 14.04.

During the package installation, let the installer automatically configure Redis database for OpenVAS scanner.

How to Install OpenVAS on Ubuntu 16.04 – Configuring OpenVAS Scanner

Upon completion of installation. You would need to download a set of NVT’s (Network Vulnerability Tests) from OpenVAS Feed service. To begin the download, execute the following command.

### OpenVAS 9 ###

sudo greenbone-nvt-sync

### OpenVAS 8 ###

sudo openvas-nvt-sync

Upon completion, run following command to download and update our security content automation protocol data (SCAP).

### OpenVAS 9 ###

sudo greenbone-scapdata-sync

### OpenVAS 8 ###

sudo openvas-scapdata-sync

This will take longer time, but not more than 30 minutes (Depends on your internet connection).

Download certdata as well.

### OpenVAS 9 ###

sudo greenbone-certdata-sync

### OpenVAS 8 ###

sudo openvas-certdata-sync

This will also take some time to complete, but lesser than what it takes for downloading SCAP data.

Restart the OpenVAS scanner and OpenVAS Manager.

sudo service openvas-scanner restart
sudo service openvas-manager restart

Now Rebuild the OpenVAS database.

sudo openvasmd --rebuild --progress

Working with OpenVAS Web Interface:

In OpenVAS 9, default port number of the web interface is 4000. So, to access the web interface for version 9, go to,


To access the web interface of OpenVAS 8, go to


Change Interface Port Number (Optional) – Ubuntu 16.04:

You can change the port number of web interface by editing /etc/default/openvas-gsa.


Restart the openvas-gsa service to take an effect of the port number change.

sudo service openvas-gsa restart

Once Completed, Start the OpenVAS Manager.


Run the first security scan:

OpenVAS 9:

OpenVAS 8:

That’s All, Place your valuable comments below.

openvasubuntu 14.04ubuntu 16.04va scanner
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  • Dean Stickells

    Thanks for the great tutorial but please can anyone help? – I get OpenVAS up and running real easy and start a scan which seems to go well. However, I have resorted to rebuilding it from scratch several times because I keep hitting a brick well (generally after a reboot) where the “openvasmd
    –rebuild –progress” hangs after a short while (literally for hours until I give up) or, the “openvas-scanner” service keeps timing out on start. I’m no LINUX export so maybe I am missing something simple but it’s driving me mad 🙁

    I would post logs but I cant seem to find any with any relevant help or information – the best I can get is this;

    administrator@ovas01:~$ systemctl status openvas-scanner.service
    ● openvas-scanner.service – LSB: remote network security auditor – scanner
    Loaded: loaded (/etc/init.d/openvas-scanner; bad; vendor preset: enabled)
    Active: failed (Result: timeout) since Thu 2017-05-25 14:56:19 BST; 16min ago
    Docs: man:systemd-sysv-generator(8)
    Process: 1565 ExecStart=/etc/init.d/openvas-scanner start (code=killed, signal=TERM)
    Tasks: 2
    Memory: 5.0M
    CPU: 25ms
    CGroup: /system.slice/openvas-scanner.service
    ├─1297 /usr/sbin/openvassd
    └─1571 /usr/sbin/openvassd

    May 25 14:51:19 ovas01 systemd[1]: Starting LSB: remote network security auditor – scanner…
    May 25 14:56:19 ovas01 systemd[1]: openvas-scanner.service: Start operation timed out. Terminating.
    May 25 14:56:19 ovas01 systemd[1]: Failed to start LSB: remote network security auditor – scanner.
    May 25 14:56:19 ovas01 systemd[1]: openvas-scanner.service: Unit entered failed state.
    May 25 14:56:19 ovas01 systemd[1]: openvas-scanner.service: Failed with result ‘timeout’.

    Thanks in advance!