Trying to decide...unRaid or OMV

    • OMV 1.0
    • I have used both before (I had paid for the unraid ugrade) but am much happier with omv for my purposes. My main requirements were Plex for my media and Tvheadend to record UK freeview TV plus file serving/back up duties. Whilst I could get it to work with unraid I found that a lot of the unraid plugins were hosted on individuals dropbox or other cloud services. If you rebooted your machine and that indivdual had reached their bandwith limit, their plugin would not load. The omv plugins appear to use the Debian repositories, so thats not a problem. Also being debian its easier to add other debian based programs. For example tvheadend is running on mine as a normal Debian tvheadend install. On unraid it was a bit of a hack to get tvheadend to run on it.

      Also unraid uses riserfs (or did at the time) so you would need a copy of Ubuntu 12.04 if you wanted to read the disks. Where as my raid 5 install could be moved to my ubuntu machine if needed and it would just work.
      OMV 1.16 – ASUS ITX - G2020 2.9ghz - 8GB RAM - 40GB boot - 3x2tb in raid 5
    • I've been using unRAID 4.x and 5.x for a while but am now making the switch to OMV.

      But let's clarify something first: unRAID is not RAID, it's parity. Second, neither OMV nor unRAID use the "raid card on the motherboard" OOTB.

      IMO, it all depends on your requirements, which you haven't stated. Therfore, I would suggest you to try out OMV since it is free, setup snapRAID and some other plugins and see how you like it. The biggest differences for me are:

      unRAID: real-time parity, moderate SMB performance without cache drive but good enough for some basic file sharing, Slackware based so good luck trying to something unordinary, reiserfs = trying to lock you in to their system, read-only filesystem so again: not easy to work with, sleep doesn't work OOTB for a lot of motherboards, it isn't free. I also was not impressed with a lot of the plugins (they didn't work, lots of problems, ...) although this may have been improved with their support for Docker.

      OMV: WebGUI looked much cleaner and detailed OOTB, plugins can be completely configured from the webGUI, Debian based, no read-only filesystem so easier to work with, sleep works fine and it's free. Combined with snapRAID for media and a software RAID 1 for files/backups this makes a good alternative IMO. A little less plugins but you get what you pay for and if you raaly need something it should be possible to set it up. A rather big disadvantage is the need for a SATA port for the boot drive.

      So far I am much more impressed with OMV even though it isn't perfect either.
    • Technically, it can use a USB flash drive but because of the many writes of OMV and the limited wrtie operations of most flash drives, it is not recommended. If you don't mind replacing your USB flash drive frequently and have a good backup of your current config (great functioning plugin by the way, you can make backups on a headless system) it is possible.

      In my case, I had problems making it work, even with a notebook drive in a USB enclosure, it failed after 24 hours or so. Didn't take the time to investigate further though may do so in the future. Maybe you've got more luck than me, but you'll also have to live with the lack of S.M.A.R.T. data this way.

      Another option I was considering is one of those PCIe SSD's, but they get kind of expensive and your motherboard must support booting from it. Depending on were you're from, you might be able to pick up a regular SATA to PCIe adapter for 20$ or so. Maybe that is an option too.

      The hard drive can be part of a snapRAID setup, I don't think it is good idea to include it in a soft RAID config even when possible. You can use it for a VM or as a regular share for backups for instance.
    • If you install the openmediavault-flashmemory plugin, you can use a usb flash drive for the OS. I have been testing it on an two amd64 systems, an RPi, and an odroid-c1 for almost two months. The writes to the drive have dropped by 90+%
      omv 4.1.13 arrakis | 64 bit | 4.15 proxmox kernel | omvextrasorg 4.1.13 plugins source code and issue tracker - github

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    • TBH, I didn't actually count them, it was just a personal impression. The plugins you linked too are for the previous version and there are quite a lot of plugins shattered throughout unRAID's forums. On top of that, since version 6 supports Docker containers, these can be considered plugins too and then it probably starts adding up. But I saw someone is working on a Docker plugin for OMV too, so ...

      I was just giving my personal view, unRAID seemed to have more plugins I may find interesting to use. Then again OMV has a few which I consider very valuable and that work much more stable, plus most of the other plugins I want. But I am still getting to know OMV and only have experience with unRAID 5 so maybe my opinion must be taken with a grain of salt.