Blog TrueNAS SCALE Dragonfish improves SMB Services and Performance

Mar 25, 2021
The Dragonfish chapter of TrueNAS SCALE moves to the second stage with the release of TrueNAS SCALE 24.04-RC1. After a successful BETA release with thousands of users, it’s time for some serious testing of the Release Candidate that is now available.

TrueNAS SCALE Dragonfish (24.04), the fourth major version of SCALE, builds on the high availability, scale-up storage, and easy deployment of containerized applications included in Cobia (23.10). The new features of Dragonfish were previously described in the BETA announcement and demonstrated by prolific community member Tom Lawrence. These included over 1,000 improvements addressing security, auditing, cloud backup, reporting, and log management. We’re very excited that the Release version is on track for April 2024.


Major SMB Services Improvements​

TrueNAS 23.10.2 has been well received by those using it, particularly those running SMB. It is our recommended version today, and provides Enterprise quality with fast failover (HA systems only), SMB file sync, and optional FIPS-grade encryption.

While Dragonfish can provide all of the standard file, block, object, and App services of Cobia, this section will focus on the improvements for SMB users of TrueNAS specifically. Whether you are running Windows, MacOS, or Linux clients, SMB has become the most commonly used file sharing protocol. Here are the primary changes coming with Dragonfish compared to Cobia and TrueNAS CORE:

Major SMB Performance Accelerations

  • 10x faster server-side file copies with OpenZFS 2.2.2
  • 2x increase of default ZFS ARC size to match TrueNAS CORE ZFS usage
  • Better metadata management for up to 10x faster directory listings
  • Improved speeds allow over 1 million files per Directory (10x increase)
  • General Samba 4.19 speed improvements
  • Over 3GB/s second single-client speed without SMB Multichannel

Significant SMB Server Security Improvements

  • Auditing of TrueNAS UI/API events
  • Audit logging of all TrueNAS system and SMB login attempts
  • Vastly Improved Log management UI
  • Restricted admins (system, storage, monitoring) using Directory Services (Enterprise only)
  • Immutable ZFS snapshots (relies on restricted admins)
  • Samba 4.19 security vulnerability fixes
  • NIST 800-209 Storage Security Compliance for government/defense customers
  • First-ever Security Technical Implementation Guide (STIG) for TrueNAS

Advanced File Sharing Features

  • Simpler SMB and NFS share creation with a wizard
  • SMB auditing of client and file events (e.g., open, read, write, modify)
  • FreeIPA support (open-source alternative to Active Directory)
  • Syncthing importing of SMB shares from other systems with full ACLs/permissions
  • Verified support for shares with mixed NFSv4 and SMB access

Automated Backup and Management

  • Improved backup and setup of Cloud Sync Tasks
  • Visibility into backup status on main dashboards
  • Replication management via TrueCommand 3.0
  • SMB session management
  • Netdata reporting integrated within WebUI

The much-desired return of Netdata reporting is only possible because of its full support of Linux. Unfortunately, Netdata’s support of FreeBSD was tepid at best.

The RC1 version includes over 200 fixes to the BETA. If you’re interested in seeing the full list of improvements and fixes, check out the SCALE 24.04-RC1 Release Notes on the TrueNAS Docs site.

As with any RC1 release, we recommend that only testers and early adopters use this version until there has been more feedback from the Community. The TrueNAS Software Status Page tracks the quality and user type and usage recommendation of the release. TrueNAS SCALE 23.10.2 is recommended for nearly anyone from early-adopters to conservative users.

TrueNAS CORE 13.3 is Planned for Q2​

TrueNAS SCALE is the software edition where forward-looking development takes place. Once new features and components are tested and validated there, some are eligible for backporting to TrueNAS CORE. The focus of TrueNAS CORE continues to be sustaining storage reliability and security for existing users.

The next version of TrueNAS CORE (renamed as 13.3 to align with its FreeBSD base version) is planned for Q2 of 2024. This will include updates to ZFS as well as an upgrade of Samba to version 4.19 to maintain parity with Dragonfish. It also smoothes transitions for users from CORE to SCALE, especially for HA systems.

TrueNAS 13.0 users can easily “sidegrade” to TrueNAS SCALE Dragonfish with the primary exception being Jail users. Dragonfish includes early support for Sandboxes, offering jail-like capabilities in Linux.

TrueNAS SCALE 23.10.2 is the Current Version​

TrueNAS SCALE has inherited the storage functionality and automated testing from CORE. SCALE has matured rapidly and offers a more robust app environment based on Linux Containers & KVM. TrueNAS SCALE has become the recommended version for new TrueNAS users.

The latest Cobia release, TrueNAS SCALE 23.10.2, has reached Enterprise quality and is now used by many of our largest and most conservative customers. More than 105,000 users are currently using TrueNAS SCALE and it is available for download here.

TrueNAS provides these choices and the ability to automatically migrate storage services and VMs from CORE to SCALE. Plugins and jails can be manually replaced with apps and sandboxes. We encourage anyone looking for further advice or answers to questions to visit our Community Forums or Discord Channel.

Freedom to Store What’s Valuable to You​

For each new release, our focus stays the same—to provide you with the freedom to access and manipulate your data your way. As TrueNAS has evolved, it has brought a cleaner user interface with added features like apps and catalogs to serve your requirements.

We look forward to working with the TrueNAS Community to rapidly progress Dragonfish through RC1 and Release. If you have a test system, please download the Dragonfish RC1 and report any bugs you find. Our engineering team would also like to hear positive experiences from any of the new features.

The post TrueNAS SCALE Dragonfish improves SMB Services and Performance appeared first on TrueNAS - Welcome to the Open Storage Era.

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