Small home server configuration


Jul 20, 2009
Im trying to figure out how to get a small NAS server on my network and I really dont want another physical box.

Currently, I run Proxmox 4.4, its been rock solid. As guests, I have a VPN server, Mythtv, Zoneminder, Homeassistant and MediaTomb all running. Nothing mission critical, a lot of disk I/O, but no issues.

Would there be any concerns with making making the physical server a NAS server also? I was thinking of a fresh install using XFS and then setting up Samba and NFS. Some of my VMs would access these disks.

Is there a better way without another box?

Well if your box have enough cpu and ram. As well as some spare hdds. you can try proxmox 5.3 with zfs setup.

Set some space for your usual stuff on the host. Than setup secondary zfs pool to use for NAS. Do not add it to local store on proxmox.
Get a turnkey file server container and set it up.
Than You can bind mount the secondary zfs pool into it and share it from the container. Turnkey file server has everything you need installed. Samba nfs etc...
You need it if you do not go in to problems. In some few ocassions I have problems with RAM(=> zfs errors), and changing the memory have solve the problems.
Proxmox zfs specs says ecc memory recommended. Is really needed for a low budget home server?
I cannot tell you.
Me setup has ecc. I did not plan for zfs initially but when I was upgrading the MB. It came with ecc ram. So I had to fill it with same type.
Than as I was upgrading the OS I decided to use zfs. All I can tell you is that zfs works well in the scenario you describe. Since proxmox doesn't really supports mdadm there are very few options exists for a good nas setup. You may also try lvm. Don't you think you may need spme kind of raid option for data protection and usability?
You need ECC for ZFS the same way as you need it for any other filesystem. Nothing special to ZFS here:

There's nothing special about ZFS that requires/encourages the use of ECC RAM more so than any other filesystem. If you use UFS, EXT, NTFS, btrfs, etc without ECC RAM, you are just as much at risk as if you used ZFS without ECC RAM. Actually, ZFS can mitigate this risk to some degree if you enable the unsupported ZFS_DEBUG_MODIFY flag (zfs_flags=0x10). This will checksum the data while at rest in memory, and verify it before writing to disk, thus reducing the window of vulnerability from a memory error.

I would simply say: if you love your data, use ECC RAM. Additionally, use a filesystem that checksums your data, such as ZFS.

Matthew Ahrens, co-founded the ZFS project at Sun Microsystems in 2001
Hi. Don't know if you ever got this going or not, but I think this is a fairly common use case. I just completed a similar project (didn't use ZFS, but concept is same). I suggest that you run your NAS as a container and NOT on PVE natively. With your drives or array mounted in PVE, then just set up mount point(s) in the container config that point to the drives/arrary/pool or whatever. This separates your NAS from PVE which is better practice in my opinion, keeps your virtualization server clean. Here's a summary of how I set mine up:

  1. Each entire disk (no partitions) formatted and mounted in PVE.
  2. Running Snapraid in PVE for disk failure protection (single parity but obviously more possible as you desire)
  3. Running mergerfs in PVE to pool the data disks. Pool is also mounted in PVE at /mnt/pool.
  4. Running a Turnkey Linux Mediaserver LXC container for file serving (Samba), media management (Emby), etc. Setup up a single mount point in the container pointing to the pool mount point in PVE.
Hope that helps.


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