A proposal from a FreeNAS developer to implement the popular FreeBSD-based NAS solution via Debian led to the creation of Open Media Vault (OMV).
We have featured the project several times since the project was first published almost a decade ago. Most recently, Jonni used it in LXF269 to show you how to run the Plex streaming media server on OMV via Docker.
If you are familiar with the concept of the NAS (and even more so, if you have used one), you agree that this type of use is well beyond the purview of a NAS. This is possible because OMV has an impressive plugins system that allows you to charge your NAS and use it for more than just a simple file server.
About this article
This review first appeared in Linux format Magazine, Issue No. 270, published December 2020.
Installable media for OMV are available for 64-bit computers. However, you can also install it on an existing 32-bit Debian installation. OMV even supports multiple arm architectures, including the one that powers the Raspberry Pi.
In addition to hard drives and SSDs, you can also install OMV on USB sticks and flash media. This is especially useful if you plan to use a single board computer (SBC) like the RPi.
Since OMV is designed to take over the entire hard drive, installation is pretty easy. When it is ready to use, you can configure and manage the NAS using OMV’s browser-based management interface.
If it’s not broken …
Aside from tweaking here and there, not much has changed in the user interface since the first few days. The multilingual interface is pretty logical and you can scroll through the menus from top to bottom to set up your NAS.
The project has extensive documentation and you should take some time to familiarize yourself with the deployment process.
With OMV you can use the connected hard disks individually or integrate them into a software RAID. By default, the drives are formatted as ext4. However, you can also use them as ext3, btrfs, xfs, and jfs file systems. OMV supports multiple RAID levels and each requires a different number of hard drives.
For example, standard RAID level 5 requires a minimum of three hard drives, while RAID 1, which mirrors data across drives, only requires a minimum of two hard drives. When you select a RAID level, OMV will tell you the minimum number of hard drives you will need for the selection.
Then there is user management, which is just a graphical interface for creating users in the underlying Debian base. With OMV you can not only add individual users, but also import a number of users by specifying all users in the appropriate format.
In this section you can also define access control parameters via a clear interface. Once you’ve defined your NAS, you can make it visible on the network using any of the popular protocols including NFS, SMB / CIFS, FTP, SSH and rsync.
OMV is immediately a very powerful distribution for providing a NAS. However, it is the plugins that speed up the usability. OMV has a number of official plugins as well as third party plugins that you can install and activate according to your needs and requirements.
If there is a lot of free space on the drive where you installed OMV, you can use one of the official plugins to create shared folders. There’s another one that keeps an eye on the hard drives to make sure you can catch a failed hard drive before it breaks.
These official plugins are well supported by the community maintained extras plugins (like the Docker and Portainer used by Jonni) which you can install following the simple instructions below www.omv-extras.org.
Source link : https://www.techradar.com/reviews/open-media-vault/