Newbie hardware setup recommendation


Jan 29, 2024
I decided I wanted a NAS/Home server. After much research, I decided of Truenas Scale. My hardware I acquired for the setup are:

1: Erying i7-12800h mITX MOTD in a Jonsbo N3 case with 750w SFX modular power supply and 64GB DDR4 3200 ram.

2: 2 x 256 GB Timetec sata SSD drives to mirror as boot/system drives on install.

3: 2 x 2TB SK HYNIX PLATINUM P41 NVME PCIe 4 x4 drives to mirror as Apps/VM drive

4: 8 x 20 TB Seagate x22 spinning drives for my data pool to configure as an 8-wide RaidZ2 array.

I want to do a partitioned system install on the SSDs of 32GB (maybe 16GB swapfile) and define the remaining 224 GB (or 208 w/ swapfile) as a mirror VDEV for use in relatively static VMs and/or data.

The data array will be used primarily as a media server (Jellyfin or PLEX) with a lot of the space in large video files.

So, I am also considering partitioning the NVME drives to create a 1750 GB data VDEV mirror for Apps/VMs and smaller data requiring fast access like photo, e-book, and music files. I would use the remaining 250 GB as a SPECIAL VDEV mirror to attach to my primary spinning disk data pool to store metadata (not small files) to accelerate disk access.

All in I would have 4 pools:

1. Boot/system 32 GB (or 48 GB with swapfile) pool

2. SSD pool with a 224 GB (or 208 GB with swapfile) mirrored data VDEV

3. NVME pool with 1750 GB fast mirrored data VDEV

4. TANK pool with a 8-wide RaidZ2 disk VDEV and a 250GB mirrored NVME SPECIAL VDEV.

I have all 8 drives installed and fully tested via a Windows 10 to Go usb drive and Seagate Seatools. I ran "Fixall" on all 8 drives simultaneously which took about 26 hours and all are clean. I bought an extra drive to have on hand as a spare (not hot). I formatted 3 of the drives and they hit around 290 MB/s seq. read and write with 3 instances of CrystalDiskMark running simultaneously. The SSDs hit 547 MB/s read and 521 MB/s write, while the NVME drives hit 7140 MB/s read and 6700 MB/s write.

I know Truenas recommends creating VEVs from entire disks but the r/ZFS has plenty of people allocating disk partitions to VDEVs and quite a few YouTube tutorial videos for Truenas showing how it is done, although requiring use of the CLI since not supported in the GUI.

Upsides... Downsides... Any suggestions for my setup would be greatly appreciated before I start my adventure!


Old Man
May 28, 2011
After much research, I decided of Truenas Scale. My hardware I acquired for the setup are:
Advice... Don't do it, you your statement says you already acquired the hardware, too bad. I see no upsides to this build. You either didn't do enough research or are completely fine with the risks. But if this is really only a media server, just in my opinion you are doing way too much.

I had a lot of comments but I deleted them all because they were all negative against the parts, the design, things you wanted to do, and YouTube videos not being up to date or someone promising the world using non-server hardware.

How are you connecting 8 hard drives to this system is the only question I have.

A note of caution: If you run into problems doing something or your data is at risk, ensure you are very clear on your hardware and how things are setup. The folks here will help but to help you, we need accurate details and never assume you know what details we need. It's safe to assume we need everything and all the details of the problem. Partitioning the boot drives is very easy but as you note, it's a manual operation and not supported. Some folks will help, some folks will not.

My best advice is when you build it, do not put much data on it initially in case you desire to change the pool around.