Hi to all,
Finally I built my first NAS based on OMV 5 using most of components left from previous computer builds. Before I used a QNAP branded NAS to store my data on. At some point I realized it was not enough for my purposes and I decided to build a network storage on my own. For this purpose I picked up an AM1 motherboard with AMD 5350 APU on board. I expanded my existing storage capacity to 5x2Tb drives for the most important part, i.e. documents, photos, storage for nextcloud, programs; 10Tb drive for torrents and 256Gb SSD for the operating system. The motherboard contains only two SATA connectors, so I attached a 3ware 9750 RAID controller to it in order to expand my storage capability. Basically only 2Tb drives are connected to the RAID controller since it is too old to read drives larger than 2Tb. So 10Tb and SSD are attached to the motherboard directly.
Here is the main part of my story. Going over information posted in this forum and other places in the internet, I understood a few things. First of all, a hardware RAID is more difficult to rebuild in case of a hardware failure with the controller. Much easier for manipulation is software raid. A good choice for future expandability of my array is LVM. So I ended with mdadm and LVM on top of it. Next I formatted my drives to EXT4 as advised here as the easiest and most reliable file system especially for newbies. However I wasn't satisfied with it, since this fs doesn't support snapshots and as a result file history in Windows. I wanted to have this option available especially for documents and photos. After that I reformatted my array into btrfs. So at the moment my config is as follows: LVM on top of mdamd with btrfs as a main filesystem (except partition for nextcloud where I left ext4).
Reading in the internet about possible problems with such configuration I realized that this is more likely an overkill (it seems btrfs can easily be expanded without need to have LVM structure) which can bring to many issues once I need to rebuild an array or restore data. So, I need your help guys, what is the best storage strategy enabling the following features:
- Redundancy with 2 parity drives (similar to RAID 6). In case of failure of one of the disks (or RAID controller) the array should be restored easily.
- Expandability. Necessary partitions should be easily expanded in case of adding another 2Tb drive to the system.
- Support for File history in Windows.
- Reasonably simple array maintenance.
Looking forward for practical advises from any of you.