The problem with a growing startups or small business is scalability when they reach a path where they are neither small nor big, too big to use public cloud storage services and too small to afford enterprise storage solutions. Public cloud storage services start out cheap but could become prohibitively expensive as more data is stored. Depending on factors outside your control, performance can be unreliable, at the same time there is a high privacy and security risk involved with storing certain data on someone else’s ‘cloud’ computer unless you pay a premium for enterprise military grade encryption.
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This is where Prosumer comes into play, it hits the sweat spot between Consumer and Professional. Storage Operating System allows you to set up your own ‘Cloud’ on your network at your own cost. Because these OS uses a desktop computer as a storage system, it doesn’t make any sense for Home Users to run it for 24/7, if you’re into creating a central network storage system for your house, get a consumer NAS Storage from WD, D-Link, Asus or Seagate. Without further ado, here are 5 free and open-source network-attached storage (NAS) OS software for small businesses.
↓ 01 – NAS4Free | BSD OS | AMD 64-bit Only
NAS4Free is an Open Source Storage NAS (Network-Attached Storage) distribution based on FreeBSD. The NAS4Free operating system can be installed on virtually any hardware platform to share computer data storage over a computer network. ‘NAS’ as in “Network-Attached Storage” and ‘4Free’ as in ‘Free and open source’, NAS4Free is the simplest and fastest way to create a centralized and easily-accessible server for all kinds of data easily accessed with all kinds of network protocols and from any network.
NAS4Free supports sharing across Windows, Apple, and UNIX-like systems. It includes ZFS v5000 , Software RAID (0,1,5), disk encryption, S.M.A.R.T / email reports etc. with the following protocols: CIFS/SMB (Samba), Active Directory Domain Controller (Samba), FTP, NFS, TFTP, AFP, RSYNC, Unison, iSCSI (initiator and target), HAST, CARP, Bridge, UPnP, and Bittorent which is all highly configurable by its WEB interface. NAS4Free can be installed on Compact Flash/USB/SSD key, Hard disk or booted from a LiveCD/LiveUSB with a small usbkey for config storage.
- BitTorrent client (Transmission)
- iTunes/DAAP server (Firefly)
- Network Bandwidth measure tool (iPerf3)
- UPnP server (fuppes)
- UPnp server (MiniDLNA)
- Webserver (lighttpd)
↓ 02 – openmediavault | Linux OS
openmediavault is the next generation network attached storage (NAS) solution based on Debian Linux. It contains services like SSH, (S)FTP, SMB/CIFS, DAAP media server, RSync, BitTorrent client and many more. Thanks to the modular design of the framework it can be enhanced via plugins.
openmediavault is primarily designed to be used in small offices or home offices, but is not limited to those scenarios. It is a simple and easy to use out-of-the-box solution that will allow everyone to install and administrate a Network Attached Storage without deeper knowledge.
- Debian Linux OS
- Web based administration
- Volume management
- Wake On Lan
- IPv6 support
↓ 03 – FreeNAS | BSD OS
FreeNAS is an operating system that can be installed on virtually any hardware platform to share data over a network. FreeNAS is the simplest way to create a centralized and easily accessible place for your data. Use FreeNAS with ZFS to protect, store, backup, all of your data. FreeNAS is used everywhere, for the home, small business, and the enterprise.
- Web Interface – The Web Interface simplifies administrative tasks. Every aspect of a FreeNAS system can be managed from a Web Interface.
- File Sharing – SMB/CIFS (Windows File shares), NFS (Unix File shares) and AFP (Apple File Shares), FTP, iSCSI (block sharing), and more.
- Snapshots – Snapshots of the entire filesystem can be made and saved at any time. Access files as they were when the snapshot was made.
- Replication – Employ the Replication feature to send Snapshots over the network to another system for true offsite disaster recovery.
- Encryption – FreeNAS is the first and only open source project to offer encryption on ZFS volumes! A full-volume encryption option is available during volume creation, providing industry standard AES-XTS encryption which can be hardware-accelerated (when the processor has AES-NI capability).
- Replication – ZFS Snapshots are more than just local backups – they can be used to create remote backups as well. Replicating snapshots of the filesystem to a remote ZFS filesystem creates a complete duplicate there.
↓ 04 – Openfiler | Linux OS
Openfiler converts an industry standard x86_64 architecture system into a full-fledged NAS/SAN appliance or IP storage gateway and provides storage administrators with a powerful tool to cope with burgeoning storage needs. Openfiler ensures that storage administrators are able to make the best use of system performance and storage capacity resources when allocating and managing storage in a multi-platform network.
Openfiler provides key features such as iSCSI target for virtualization, Fibre Channel target support, block level replication and High Availabilty that are the mainstay of any business critical storage environment. Openfiler addresses all the key data storage concerns:
- Reliability – Openfiler supports both software and hardware RAID with monitoring and alert facilities; volume snapshot and recovery
- Availability – Openfiler supports active/passive high availability clustering, MPIO, and block level replication
- Performance – Linux 2.6 kernel supports the latest CPU, networking and storage hardware
- Scalability – filesystem scalability to 60TB+, online filesystem and volume growth support
↓ 05- Rockstor | Bootable OS
Build and manage your own Linux & BTRFS powered advanced NAS and Cloud storage with ease. Rockstor Small and Midsize Business (SMB) Cloud Server is the recommended solution for organizations with several hundred Terabytes of capacity requirement. Your organization may rely on expensive public cloud storage and also store a lot of data locally causing you to switch between local and cloud and ultimately resulting in inefficiency and loss of productivity. With Rockstor as your Cloud Server, works great on Microsoft’s Windows 10 and Apple’s macOS.
- Build your Private Cloud Storage and empower your organization with a hybrid workflow leveraging the best of both public and private cloud storage
- Seamlessly integrate with public cloud storage resulting in efficiency and lower operating cost
- Scale your storage needs with low incremental cost
- Manage your storage with little to no IT experience