Build your own NAS part 1: Configuring storage in OpenMediaVault

Following on from my last post where I mentioned this fantastically simple software for creating your own NAS (ideal for BackupAssist‘s Rsync feature), in this post I’m going to take things a step further and outline how to go about setting it up.

Getting started

After installing OpenMediaVault (OMV) you’re able to log into the main Web interface to start configuring your storage space and services. Before you go any further I highly recommend you change the default Web admin password from ‘openmediavault’ to something a little more secure, and you can do this under the General settings tab.

Allocating your disks and storage space

Our next task is set up the physical disks we plan to use in OMV. You can use several of these to store data on if you wish, including SATA/ PATA and USB connected. One great feature is read and write support for standard NTFS volumes, so if you’re connecting a disk from a windows system there’s no need to format and start from scratch.

OMV includes built in software RAID support for spanning, mirroring and even striping, so if you have several drives you want to add together to form a resilient volume, there’s plenty of options there to tinker with.

To keep things simple, in this instance we’re just going to look at creating a new volume on a dedicated internal disk that’s already physically connected. In this example I’ll use a 100GB virtual disk.

If we look under Storage > Physical disks we can now see two devices.

The first device (/dev/sda) is the small 8GB virtual drive we’ve used as a home for the OMV application files. Unfortunately this can’t be used for data storage so using your smallest disk, USB flash or a small virtual disk (if like me you’re running in a VM environment) is a good idea.

The second device ( /dev/sdb) is our larger 100GB virtual disk that we want to allocate as storage so I’ll make a note of that ID. Next under Storage > File systems lets create a new file system and mount it into Linux.

Creating a new file system

First I choose Create > select /dev/sdb and give it the label ‘100GBXFS’. I then choose to format using the XFS file system (you can choose a different file system if you prefer). Choose OK to format the disk and once completed click on Mount. Once the disk is mounted you’ll be presented with a graph showing the available space.

Allocating user storage space

The final step is to create a shared folder on this disk that we can use to store users data on. We do this under Access rights management > Shared folders. Click on Add to create a new folder.

To keep things simple let’s call it ‘user-folders’, select the volume name ‘100GB-XFS’ that we have just created and put it in a root folder of the drive ‘\users-folders’. We’ll leave the user rights as default for the time being.

Once done you should have a new shared folder as per below…

What next?

To find out how to use this share to go on and store BackupAssist Rsync backups follow the next blog post!

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8 thoughts on “Build your own NAS part 1: Configuring storage in OpenMediaVault

  1. Pingback: Build your own NAS part 2: Configuring SSH and Rsync in OpenMediaVault | Zen Software blog

  2. Thank you for this article explaining how to build your own NAS. I have been doing a lot of research online trying to educate myself on NAS storage because I have heard a lot about it lately. I think learning to build your own NAS sounds like a cool idea. Thank you for sharing this.

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  5. I just want to know if it does true RAID 10. I have a 4-disk RAID 10 volume configured at the hardware level (Intel RST) and FreeNAS did not seem to see it. It just allowed me to configure the drives separately, even though they were already a RAID 10 volume at the hardware level. I am hoping OpenMediaVault is more intelligent in this context.

    • Hi Cameron,

      I must admit i have not tried OpenMediaVault with a Raid 10 Array however I have tried it with a simple Raid 5 array setup within the Bios. Its my understanding that as long as the raid controller is true hardware raid then it will present a single raid disk to the OS and this is what OpenMediaValut will see. However in my case the ‘Hardware’ raid was intact a software controlled raid controller and so to OpenMediaVault it appears as multiple individual disks and ignores the raid altogether.

      The only way to be sure is to try it i’m afraid. I would be interested to know if it works for you.



    • What you are talking about is a fake raid. Remove the FakeRaid and go with a true Software Raid. It will get you much more flexibility then any fakeraid can do. If you need to change to other Hardware you are dead as you now see. You need exactly another Intel RST and also need to pray that intel have not changed anything in how they organize their disks.

      So better go with a Software Raid (which also can do Raid 10). In terms of FreeNAS you should have done ZFS with RaidZ. That would have been the optimal solution.

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