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Manage Nessus Offline

To manage Nessus offline, you need two computers: the Nessus server, which is not connected to the Internet, and another computer that is connected to the Internet.

Scenario 1: New Nessus Install

You are performing a new install of Nessus, but for security purposes, the server is not connected to the Internet. In this scenario, you will perform the complete steps to install Nessus while offline. During this process, Nessus plugins are downloaded and installed on the offline Nessus server.

Scenario 2: Update Nessus Licensing

You have an existing Nessus server that is offline, your license changes, and you must update Nessus with the new license / activation code. In this case, you will perform the following operations:

  1. Generate Challenge Code
  2. Generate Your License
  3. Download and copy the license file (nessus.license)

    These instructions apply to Nessus 6.3 and newer and direct you to the following URL: https://plugins.nessus.org/v2/offline.php.

    If you are using a version of Nessus 6.2 or earlier, you must use the information and instructions displayed on the following URL: https://plugins.nessus.org/offline.php.

  4. Register Your License with Nessus
  5. Download and copy plugins to Nessus
  6. Update Nessus Plugins using tar.gz

Scenario 3: Update Nessus Plugins

You have an existing Nessus server that is offline and you need to update Nessus plugins. In this scenario, you have already completed steps to Install Nessus Offline but you need to install the latest plugins.

In this case, you will perform the following operations:

  1. Use the Custom URL that you saved and copied during your first offline Download and Copy Plugins operation.

  2. Download and Copy Plugins

  3. Update Nessus Plugins using tar.gz

Nessus Offline Operations

For the explanation purposes, we'll use computers A (offline Nessus server) and B (online computer) to demonstrate operations performed when managing Nessus offline.

Operation Computer A
(Offline Nessus)
Computer B
(Online Computer)
Generate Challenge Code X  
Generate Your License   X
Download and Copy License File (nessus.license)   X
Download and Copy Plugins   X
Download and Copy Plugins X  
Register Your License with Nessus X  
Install Plugins Manually X  

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