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FreeNAS on SSD - GRUB on USB Stick / SD Card?


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I am planning to configure my Microserver Gen8 as a FreeNas box. The plan is to use AHCI mode and install 1 x SSD in the ODD bay, plus 4 x WD reds in the normal hdd bays.


I know that I can install FreeNAS on an USB stick and boot from it, but I am worried that the stick will degrade quickly and start throwing I/O errors. So instead, I am planning to install it in on an SSD in the ODD bay. However, as we all know Microserver will not allow me to boot from the SSD in the AHCI mode.


So my plan is to:

- install FreeNAS 11 on the SSD drive (when no other drives are in the hdd bays),

- fit all other hard drives into the hdd bays,

- install GRUB on an USB stick (or an SD card) and use it just to boot off the SATA Port 5 (i.e. ODD).


Has anybody tried such a configuration? Will it work?

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You should set hdd controller in RAID mode and add SSD as RAID 0 volume. Install Freens on SSD - you can boot system from SSD. Next fit all other drives into the hdd bays, and freenas will recognize it and you can add its as RAIDZ1 pool or something else - as you want. Do not add other drives as RAID volumes in HP controller, just leave it as unassigned - freenas recognize it.

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