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New NAS installation questions


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Hi everybody. I had a MS Gen 8 G1610T as a gift. I plan to use it for my studies as a NAS. I added 2x8GB of RAM with 2 1TB HDD  but did not change the CPU. My questions :


  • ESXi or baremetal NAS installation ?
  • Which NAS OS : FreeNAS, XPEnology, NAS4Free ?
  • RAID1 or redundant vdevs ?

Thanks :)

Edited by ironworks
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Well, what you plan on doing with the system, or want to do with it. 


If you want/need to run "labs" for testing, then a Hypervisor is a fantastic idea.  But if you don't, there is no reason not to run whatever OS on bare metal.


As for which OS, well, Windows is a perfectly viable NAS OS as well.   Windows 10 Pro makes a fantastic OS for this sort of thing.

But if you're more familiar with Linux, it's not a bad idea. 


As for which specific? That's entirely up to you. A lot of these OS's just semi-automate stuff for you.  And XPEnology may have issues when it comes to updates (IIRC).  But you may want to check out unRAID as well, as it's very "turnkey".



As for storage,  if you go Windows, check out StableBit DrivePool.  Otherwise, look into ZFS.

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Hi Drashna. Thanks for your reply.


I like Windows and Linux, I'm a open minded guy. As a student, i can get free licenses so OS cost is not a problem.

I don't know TurnKey and LimeTech. I will check that.

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And just FYI, "turnkey" is a term, meaning dead simple, like all you have to do is "turn a key" :)



As for the OS, I'd recommend using whatever is most comfortable to you.  When (not if) things go wrong, it's easier to troubleshoot on what you know. 

But if you want to learn, then running a hypervisor (like ESXi or HyperV) is a great way to create test  machines that you can play with.

Also, Windows 10 Pro includes HyperV. :)  (but then again, unRAID does as well, and FreeNAS and the like support KVM (a hypervisor))

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I believe that it doesn't support all the features needed to be able to do so.  


Otherwise, depending on what you're doing, a hyper-visor is going to be much more memory and disk intensive than CPU intensive. 

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If you are not planning to swap the CPU for a more powerful one, don't go with virtualization. Just run Windows Server or Linux and you'll still have good performance for a NAS.

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