FreeNas Build Advice


I am planning to build a FreeNas system using some of the old hardware that I have to store media and other non critical stuff. I hope to get minimum of 12 TB usable storage in RAID Z2 configuration.Following are spec’s.

Intel Core I5 2500k
Intel DH6C7BL Mobo
32 GB non ECC memory
2x 120 GB SSD as redundant boot media.
6x 4TB WD RED NAS Drives
Cooler Master MWE 650 Bronze - V2 PSU
Cooler Master CM 690 II Case

I am planning to use LSI Internal SATA/SAS LSI 9211-8i LSI00194 8port 6Gb/s PCI-Express 2.0 RAID Controller Card, LSI SAS HBA to connect my HDD’s. Please let me know if this the right HBA for my build.

Thank you.

The iX community forums are a good place to start.

The FreeNAS version numbers track that of the underlying FreeBSD operating system. So the question relating to the HBA is “Is it supported in FreeBSD 11?”

A comment here suggests it is.

The SSDs for the boot drives are not required (unless you really want to). Almost everyone uses a pair of SanDisk Cruzer Fit drives to mirror the OS install.

Even if both boot thumb drives go you have not lost any data. You just reinstall FreeNAS, login, rescan for storage and import your pool. If you have been diligent and backed up your system configuration you just import it as well and you are gold.

You could then use the SSDs as ZIL / SLOG drives.

You state the data is non critical so the non ECC RAM is not an issue.

Hope this helps.


Thank you this answers my questions, will go with thumb drive as suggested.


One thing to remember you cant add storage to your pool less drives then your original vdev size so if you want to expand storage later using the parts in your top build it will always require another set of 6 drives(honestly this is a good size for RZ2) I just wanted to make sure you were aware of this (it will not stop you from making more pools tho)

This makes no sense to me.

There is no rule on growing a pool. You can say there are best practices tho.

You can add vdevs to a pool however you want. That is up to the end user.

Maybe i am using the wrong terms. There is a recommended min of drives that works well with different RZ levels. There is also a thing I remember reading about adding vdevs needing to be of the same size in a pool, unless I am mistaken. Busy with writing a paper for school but I can try and dig it up later when I take a break.

quick google says is more of best practices not required, makes sense tho due to performance issues that could arise)

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