FreeNAS replacement?

Hello! I have been running FreeNAS for a couple of years now but I feel like it has started to limit me on what I can and want to do with it.

People say that a NAS should be just a NAS but I disagree. I would like to be able to run docker, maybe a VM or two, have support for “obscure” hardware like FusionIO. I never really liked jails and the networking stack has been problematic for me. Heck, even L1T switched from FreeNAS to Fedora to have more options.

I am looking for something Linux based, probably not very heavily customized so that I can install device drivers and commonly used software.

An HTML GUI is imperative. I have seen posts about common Linux distros with Ansible or Webmin being used as FreeNAS replacements or others switching to OpenMediaVault.

Of course I need ZFS support and I would really like encryption. I do have Geli encryption on my FreeNAS pool right now that I might be able to remove while keeping the data, but I do not know if I will be able to re-encrypt everything without wiping the data. Any advice on this will be really helpful.

At last, I would very much like some sort of ZFS GUI management as I don’t completely trust myself with ZFS and CLI but I know this is probably a stretch.

Are you running something like this? Do you have any advice/recommendations for me?

Have you played around with unraid yet?

I would prefer FOSS but I suppose I will have a look.

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Well Ubuntu 19.10 is going to roll with zfs on root. Probably just the ticket for what you want?

I just think unraid is a little more streamlined and that makes it worth it to me. I prefer something that saves me time and effort over something more free.

How about adding rather than replacing? I mean FreeNAS does the storage part of what you want, just put another box next to it and have it run VMs and stuff?

So far I haven’t seen any GUI apart from the webGUI on FreeNAS. But I haven’t really searched for it either, so …


I don’t think this exists. You can get any 2 of those, but not all 3, unless someone added ZOL to webmin.

What about cockpit?

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Hi, it’s me, from apparently under the rock.

I have never heard of that one but it looks really interesting.

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Thank @Novasty, he turned me on to it.

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Is that what Fedora Server uses?

I think it may be installed ootb.

Cockpit works for any *nix pretty much.

But Fedora Server has it out of the box.

I use it on all my stuff.

My solution is I run CentOS with ZoL.

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I assume managing ZFS would be a requirement for the web GUI. If not, there are a few options, including Cockpit.

I dont know enough about it to know if it will or will not work for that. I dont use it that way. I stuck with unraid. I know it has some capacity for managing storage… but no idea if it works for zfs.

I’d be surprised if it did. As far as RHEL is concerned the ZFS license is incompatible with GPL so they don’t support it in any way.

At least I assume it’s GPL. There’s a license issue of some sort.

OpenMediaVault with it’s ZFS plugin?

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I didn’t know that existed. Neat.

Can you manage zfs in any way from cockpit?

tl;dr no

Could virtualize your FreeNAS and just passthrough the USB/Disk and HBA to it, then run whatever else you want in VMs