Quick way to install OpenVAS on the Ubuntu server

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Installation of OpenVAS is necessary on Ubuntu as it protects the server from unauthenticated access. OpenVAS is an open-source suite that can be used for vulnerability scanning and vulnerability management.

In this article, we discuss how we support our customers to install OpenVAS as part of our Server Management Services.

What is OpenVAS?

It stands for the Open Vulnerability Assessment System which helps to find any vulnerability on the server. It is an excellent alternative to commercial security scanners such as Nessus, QualysGuard, etc.

Again, OpenVAS is divided into three parts: OpenVAS Scanner, OpenVAS Manager, and OpenVAS CLI.

OpenVAS consists of,

  • Database that stores results and configurations.
  • A regularly updated feed of Network Vulnerability Tests (NVTs).
  • Scanner, which runs the NVTs.
  • The Greenbone Security Assistant, a graphical interface that allows you to manage vulnerability scans from a web application.

 

How to install and Configure OpenVAS on Ubuntu

Here, let’s see how our Support Engineers install OpenVAS on Ubuntu.

1. Initially, update the system by running the following commands,

apt-get update
apt-get upgrade

2. Then, install required dependencies, Before installing OpenVAS,  the following dependencies need to install on the Ubuntu server. To install them, run the following command,

apt-get install python-software-properties

3. Next, install SQLite for OpenVAS manager,

apt-get install sqlite3

4. By default, the OpenVAS package is not available in the Ubuntu repository, so it needs to add OpenVAS PPA to the system’s repository list.

add-apt-repository ppa:mrazavi/openvas

5. After that update the repository.

apt-get update

6. Finally, install OpenVAS.

apt-get install openvas

7. After the installation of OpenVAS, start the OpenVAS service with the following commands,

service openvas-scanner start
service openvas-manager start
service openvas-gsa start

That’s it.

In addition, to access the OpenVAS web interface, the vulnerability database should be updated. Update the vulnerability database by using the following command.

openvas-nvt-sync

 

Once the database is up-to-date, OpenVAS can access via a web browser by typing the URL. The OpenVAS web interface looks like,

 

How we Configure OpenVAS Remote Access

To access the Greenbone Security Assistant web interface remotely, it must configure to listen to the public IP address.

Therefore, our Support Engineers edit the configuration file under the /etc/init.d/openvas-gsa, and specify the public IP address like below,

DAEMON_ARGS= --listen "IP_ADDRESS"

At last, we save the changes and restart openvas-gsa.

service openvas-gsa restart

 

Install OpenVAS on Ubuntu – Common error and fix

Now, let’s see the major reasons for OpenVAS error and how our  Support Engineers fix the top errors.

 

Improper firewall configuration

Importantly, if the server has firewall protection like UFW, CSF, OpenVAS needs to allow through the system firewall.

By default, OpenVAS runs on port 443 and it is necessary to allow this port through the firewall.

For Example, in UFW firewall,

ufw allow https

 

[Need assistance to manage OpenVAS? We’ll help you.]

 

Conclusion

In short, OpenVAS is a powerful tool that uses for vulnerability scanning and management. Today, we saw how our Support Engineers install OpenVAS on Ubuntu and fix the related errors.

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