Today I’m going to share with you the 8 Best Free and Open source NAS or SAN software.
Get rid of storage problems and give your data a centralized place with NAS (Network-attached storage). This platform allows you to save and retrieve data in a structured way using network-based architectures.
Whatever the files you have, access and share data 24×7 through the network. NAS software not only provides storage but also protects your data and keeps it reliable. So you don’t need to purchase any storage devices individually.
NAS is a unique solution to keep all your backups of data without limitations.
Several companies offer software + hardware NAS boxes and the cost depends upon several features such as the amount of storage, RAM and CPU etc.
Therefore, if you’d like to convert your old system into a NAS box without any payments, here are the 8 best open source NAS software available on Linux which will also make data management easier for both individuals and businesses.
You can use NAS software along with OwnCloud to create a personal home cloud storage solution to sync all your files directly from desktop to mobile devices. You can listen to songs, watch videos and browse files stored on your NAS on the mobile.
Checkout the 8 best open sources NAS software available right now.
8 Best Free NAS Software Solutions:
For a NAS server, operating systems act like special software for handling typical server tasks i.e if you enable file sharing option for Windows or macOS devices, they stream content on DLNA-enabled devices and serve as a mail server.
Actually, these generally have a command-line interface but for management, one can control the NAS server remotely either from local or another device via the browser GUI web interface.
Checkout the all popular Linux Distros based on Linux or FreeBSD that are meant for only storage management purposes.
It is a FreeBSD based distribution kit for organizing NAS and is one of the most popular and best open sources NAS software with enterprise class features. FreeNAS is compatible with major protocols, hardware and also provides file sharing in a NAS environment.
It smoothly runs on x86-64 commodity hardware and supports major virtualization platforms including Citrix, VMware and Microsoft. Likewise, FreeNAS also supports Windows sharing SMB/CIFS, NFS and Apple file shares (AFP), FTP and iSCSI etc.
If you’re going to install this in an old system, check that it has enough RAM or not, especially for the ZFS file system. We recommend you to use a USB flash drive having at least 8 gigabytes of storage or booting from a burned CD.
It is easy to use, very cost-effective and the interface is user-friendly. The hardware requirements for FreeNAS include a 64-bit processor, 16 GB boot drive, 16 GB RAM, 2 direct attached disks and at least 1 physical network port.
When it comes to features, FreeNAS include data snapshots, a self-repair file system, encryption on their data volumes and more. It also has a large support system for file sharing methods which makes use of protocols like SMB/CIFS, AFP, NFS, FTP, etc.
You can download FreeNAS at no cost by visiting freenas.org or use the link mentioned below. It can be installed virtually as well as on physical hardware to create a centralized data environment.
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For open-source enthusiasts, XigmaNAS is another best free NAS software that can be installed virtually on any hardware platform to share computer data storage over a computer network.
Earlier it was known as NAS4Free and in 2018 the developer renamed it to XigmaNAS. It supports sharing across Apple, Windows and UNIX like systems.
By default, XigmaNAS includes ZFS v5000, Software RAID (0,1,5), disk encryption, S.M.A.R.T and email reports along with the subsequent protocols like CIFS/SMB (Samba), Active Directory Domain Controller (Samba), FTP, NFS, TFTP, RSYNC, Unison, iSCSI (initiator and target), HAST, CARP, Bridge, UPnP and Bittorrent that are highly configurable by its WEB interface.
XigmaNAS is the unique solution for storing, managing, analyzing and sharing data on-premises and to remote data centers.
The best thing is, it deals with almost all kinds of file systems and network configurations and also allows administrators to centrally manage multiple NAS systems through a single centralized console. You can set up and download XigmaNAS from the link below. Here are the features of XigmaNAS:
- It comes with in-built support for popular file systems like Ext2, Ext3, FAT, NTFS, ZFS and UFS
- XigmaNAS supports various standard network protocols including SMB/CIFS, NFS, AFP, FTP, TFTP, SSH, RSync and iSCSI
- Offers support for BitTorrent client, iTunes/DAAP server, VirtualBox with WebSocket, best file manager and more
- You can monitor NAS server easily via the real-time network, CPU statistics, email alerts, Syslogs and S.M.A.R.T
- It also supports ZFS and encryption services
- Powerful UI and easy to use
- You’ll get regular updates
3. Open Media Vault (OMV):
It is a solid and best NAS software solution based on Debian Linux. If you do not need ZFS, make it a choice. The services provided by Open Media Vault are SSH, (S) FTP, BitTorrent client, Rsync, SMB/CIFS, DAAP media server and more.
OMV possesses a very clean and user-friendly web interface and also provides a highly efficient and fully-featured file server for data storage, operation and access. Here file-sharing options are limited but offer various useful NAS services such as SSH, FTP, SMB/CIFS etc.
Anyways, if your hardware supports the legacy USB boot method, download the latest release of OpenMediaVault as an image. For UEFI systems, download the latest Debian NetInst ISO and install OpenMediaVault afterwards.
The installation process is similar to Debian Linux. Once you installed and finished the setup, it will ask you to sign in. By default the username for Open Media Vault is “root” and the password is “openmediavault”.
Moreover, it comes with an SSH server that provides administrators with full rights over the operating system via a secure protocol. To do it, check that you’ve installed an SSH client. Actually, OMV is designed to be used in small offices.
So even if you don’t have enough knowledge, go for it. Get this best open source NAS software by clicking on the link. Below are some features of Open Media Vault.
- It offers multiple NAS services such as SSH, (S) FTP, BitTorrent client, Rsync, SMB/CIFS, DAAP media server and more
- System updating process makes convenient by utilising the Debian package management utility
- Very clean and user-friendly web interface
- Open Media Vault supports various volume management features including HDD power management, GPT partitions, ACL and Share control etc.
- Best suits small offices and home users
Backup all your important data in an inexpensive way with Rockstor NAS software. It is based on CentOs Linux and BTRFS Which is a file system like ZFS that provides high data integrity and security.
Rockstor is compatible with both ISCSI and Fibre channels. You can use it as a personal cloud server or SMB Cloud Server. In a personal Cloud Server, you’re allowed to create your own local private cloud. This reduces the risk and cost of the public cloud.
Moreover, you can access data from desktops, laptops, tablets or PCs anywhere in the personal Cloud Server. Also, move data between public Cloud, Rockstor or to your devices.
On the other hand, Rockstor Small and Mid Size Business (SMB) Cloud servers best suit small businesses. We recommend you save crucial data in SMB Cloud Server and sensitive data in the personal Cloud Server.
You can scale your storage based on the needs, build private cloud storage and also integrate with it. Whatever the data you have, backup everything with Rockstor NAS software.
It is available in multiple operating systems with various features like Smart check for checking the health of NAS, COW drive, built-in scheduler, encryption, Jumbo frames, auto reconfigure etc.
The best thing is, enjoy with over 10Gbps of links. Get the Rockstor ISO from the link given below. Some additional features of this best open source NAS software are:
- The Rockstor to Rockstor replication feature easily recover data in case of storage disasters.
- BTRFS file system in it supports up to 16 times storage capacity than standard filesystems.
- In order to provide additional functionalities like media streaming and cloud storage, it offers a few apps carried Rockons.
- It is compatible with both ISCSI and Fibre channels.
If you’re a user of Linux/Ubuntu, no doubt Openfiler is the best open source NAS software built on top of centOS for IA-32/x86-64. It was created by Xinit Systems and is licensed under the GNU GPLv2 for free.
Openfiler provides compelling file-based network-attached storage and block-based storage area network services. Likewise, file-based storage networking protocols such as NFS & CIFS ensure cross-platform compatibility for Windows, Linux and Unix etc.
Openfiler also helps storage administrators & IT Teams to deploy, manage & utilize the storage efficiently within a multi-platform network. As an open source storage solution, Openfiler also helps companies to save the cost of storage systems.
With this, you can build a powerful and reliable network storage solution. You can download Openfiler open source network-attached storage from the official website by clicking on the link below.
Openfiler open source network-attached storage features support CIFS, NFS, FTP, HTTP protocols, journaled file systems and many more. Get this best network-attached storage software by using the link below.
The system requirements for this NAS software for Windows, Linux are as follows.
- 1.6 GHz or higher processor
- Hardware Raid controller
- 1GB Ethernet
- Disk space free of 10 GB of required
Centralize any of your backups and easily run web or media applications with Amahi by converting your personal computer into a dedicated Linux server for all your needs. Amahi handles your storage and computing needs easily.
You can store, organize and deliver videos and music to media devices in your network. Also, share them around the globe.
It is more than a personal cloud. Amahi is running in over 35 countries and is available in 20 languages with cross platform compatibility.
When you add or delete files, they automatically sync with Amahi’s cloud storage. So there you can browse the files or share them wherever you want. Some of the best features offered by Amahi are a user-friendly web interface, file sharing, reliable backup system, disk pooling etc.
Moreover, it supports file system protocols like ext4, XFS and file-sharing protocols such as Samba, NFS. With Amahi’s convenient admin dashboard you can manage NAS easily. Download this best open source NAS software Amahi ISO file by using the link given below. The features offered by Amahi are:
- Clean interface and easy to navigate.
- It offers backup options including full disk network backup and scheduled backups for Mac or Windows.
- You’re allowed to name and control all NAS connected devices on the network by replacing the DHCP/DNS setting of the router.
7. Turnkey File Server:
To make things simple, Turnkey File Server is a simple Network Attached Storage. It is a free and open-source NAS system.
Turnkey GNU/Linux is a popular Debian/GNU Linux based library of open-source system images which helps you save time as well as money by pre-integrating and polishing up the best open source software into ready-to-use solutions that are secure, well supported and easy to maintain.
Whatever operating system you have, whether it’s Windows, Mac or Linux you can easily share a folder and view or edit with others within multiple PCs.
Unlike others, Turnkey creates standard Windows SMB/CIFS shares to be accessible from Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. The best thing is support for SSL. So It has SSL support out of the box, so Web-based user and administrator access are encrypted and secure.
Moreover, it is compatible with Windows network file sharing including support for SMB, SFTP, NFS, WebDAV and rsync file transfer protocols. You can also manage both private and public storage on Samba and SambaDAV using the Turnkey File server. The key features of Turnkey are:
- Supports SSL, compression zip, rar, bz2 tools, UNIX and DOX formats.
- Simple and easy Web graphical user interface.
Encrypt all your data in a smart and effective way with CryptoNAS formerly known as CryptoBox. It is a robust NAS solution that is built on top of the Linux kernel and is available as a Live CD or as an installable package.
Once you get it, quickly set up your NAS server using CryptoNAS and proceed to encrypt it. If you don’t have an idea about NAS security, get a live CD. Because it doesn’t bother you about complicated technical issues. Also, act as a standard NAS server with encryption functionalities.
CryptoNAS generally provides two packages:
- CryptoNAS-Server and
The CryptoNAS-Server targets network administrators and adds hard disk encryption to a file server (running Samba, NFS, DAV, etc.). Oppositely, the CryptoNAS-CD targets home users and allow NAS device encryption and browsing through a web interface.
The default username and password for CryptoNAS is admin:admin. If you’d like to change, do it after installing CryptoNAS. Get it from the link mentioned below.
This free and best open source NAS Software CryptoNAS makes NAS encryption easier by abstracting technical details like filesystem and file-sharing protocols from the user. It’s server package offers an intuitive web-based frontend to encrypt and manage an existing NAS server quickly.
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Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What Is Network Attached Storage?
NAS is a storage device connected to a network that allows you to save and retrieve data in a structured way using network-based architectures. Whatever the files you have, access and share data 24×7 through the network.
NAS software not only provides storage, but also protects your data and keeps it reliable. So you don’t need to purchase any storage devices individually. NAS is a unique solution to keep all your backups of data without limitations.
2. How to Download Freenas?
To download FreeNAS, all you have to do is just click on the download FreeNAS link and redirect to an official webpage. Once you visit the page, click on the download link to save it on your device.
3. What Are the System Requirements for Openfiler for Windows?
The system requirements for this NAS software for Windows or Linux are 1.6 GHz or higher processor, Hardware Raid controller, 1GB Ethernet, Disk space free of 10 GB of required are enough.
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Ending the Article:
With NAS give your data a centralized place as well as access and share data 24×7 through the network. NAS software not only provides storage, but also protects your data and keeps it reliable.
All the above mentioned best open source NAS softwares make data management easier for both individuals and businesses. So choose the best free NAS software and keep all your backups of data without limitations.
No matter whether the files you have, save them securely in a network and access anywhere and anytime.
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