[CALUG] Recommendations for NAS with Solid State Drives

Thomas Delrue thomas at epistulae.net
Mon Aug 2 22:32:22 EDT 2021

I wanted to tap into the hive-mind and collect some thoughts, do's &
don't, and just general wisdom on NAS'es, and specifically NAS'es that
do not use spinning rust disks.

I currently have a QNAP NAS (TS-431) consisting of some spinning rust
disks. It's working well, but starting to get a bit on the old side and
so in the spirit of "replace it before it makes you replace it", I want
to look into a new one.

I'm happy with QNAP (this is not a device that is accessible from
anywhere else but my local network with no plans to change that) and I
like some of their easy features that make it super easy to - for
instance - back up in (client-side) encrypted form to a cloud storage
provider (off-site) on an automated schedule.

But... the spinning rust disks(*) are slow. Hence my question:

Does anyone have experience and/or recommendations for a good NAS with
Solid State drives? Has anyone done this or am I crazy for even wanting
to do this?

Are there folks running a QNAP device with a properly RAIDed solid state
drive-based array? What are the things to keep in mind, do or
specifically not do?

In terms of requirements, I have the following:

- I'm not interested in "building it myself" at this moment, I prefer a
device in which I stuff raw storage media.

- Data survivability is _paramount_, or in other words: I'm totally fine
"losing 'total usable space'" and having to stuff bigger or more disks
in the device if it means that more individual disks can fail before my
whole thing fails. (I think I set up my device with RAID6 back in the
day but I don't remember 100% - so feel free to tell me this was unwise
or the source of my problems as well)

- In terms of how to access the data: NFS is the only real requirement,
no samba, or whatever. But scp would be nice too...

- A nice UI is ... nice

- An easy mechanism to write things in encrypted form to a cloud service
provider such as AWS Glacier for the "we've had an absolutely major
disaster" kinda deal

- I currently have 4 drives, but I'm open to more.

- Being able to SSH into the device and maybe have it even run some
stuff on cronjobs or in containers would be cool but definitely a lower

Like I said: I'm fine sticking with QNAP. I just don't know if I'm crazy
for wanting to stuff it with solid state drives (would NVMe be doable?)
instead of spinning rust ones...or whether this is doable at all.
Are there other considerations that I should take into account?

Are there other vendors that I should look at that specifically offer a
device like this?

Thoughts, recommendations, warnings, horror & success stories are all


(*) The spinning rust disks seem slow to me but maybe it's because I set
up 4 disks with RAID6?

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