First off, let me start with what TrueNAS SCALE is. TrueNAS SCALE is built on the same foundational software and middleware as TrueNAS CORE, which is probably the best known, the world’s most widely deployed, and powerful free and open-source storage software.
TrueNAS SCALE is the first release of TrueNAS on Linux. It is Debian-based as opposed to the original, which ran on FreeBSD. That dramatically increases the available tools for users who want better control and additional features over their networked storage devices.
In other words, TrueNAS SCALE is still TrueNAS plus major additions. It just put a different operating system behind TrueNAS, but it still controls on the front-end your NFS, SMB, and all the other functionality on top of the ZFS file system.
TrueNAS SCALE has been a nearly three-year effort from the iXsystems engineering team, with the goal of fully supporting Linux Containers and VM technologies alongside existing TrueNAS storage features. The RELEASE milestone for TrueNAS SCALE is the start of its next chapter as a product, and we welcome everyone from the Storage and Linux community who are joining us on this exciting new TrueNAS journey.Kris Moore, SVP, Engineering for iXsystems
So without further ado, let’s quickly look at its capabilities.
TrueNAS SCALE 22.02 Highlights
TrueNAS SCALE 22.02 is based on Debian 11 “Bullseye” and supports existing TrueNAS CORE features plus new Linux-specific capabilities, including Docker containers, Kubernetes, KVM, and more.
Unlike most file systems, ZFS combines the features of a file system and a volume manager. This means that ZFS can create a file system that spans a series of drives or pools, unlike other file systems.
ZFS is scalable and includes extensive protection against data corruption, support for high storage capacities, efficient data compression, integration of the concepts of filesystem and volume management, snapshots and copy-on-write clones, continuous integrity checking and automatic repair, RAID-Z, native NFSv4 ACLs, and can be very precisely configured.
TrueNAS SCALE goes beyond “just a storage solution.” It provides simple access to the well-established Linux container ecosystem and makes application deployment easy.
On top of that, with support for KVM virtual machines, Kubernetes, and Docker containers, it’s easy to customize and add virtually countless applications to suit a wide variety of needs.
In addition, TrueNAS SCALE has an application catalog that one can use to install apps easily.
Windows ACLs on Linux
Permissions control the actions users can perform on dataset contents. By default, Linux only supports POSIX ACLs (Access Control List), a small subset of Windows (NFSv4) ACLs.
The addition to TrueNAS SCALE 20.22 of NFSv4 ACLs on OpenZFS within Linux enables much better SMB sharing compatibility with Windows.
CLI and GUI Features
If TrueNAS has one goal, it simplifies complex administrative tasks for users. Every aspect of a system can be managed from the pleasant web-based management interface.
TrueNAS SCALE included a more efficient Web UI that lets users configure and view more settings on a single web page. In addition, the Command-Line Interface (CLI) has been enhanced with a TrueNAS CLI that lets users harness all the power of the TrueNAS REST APIs from a text console.
Who Should Use TrueNAS SCALE?
TrueNAS SCALE is primarily for home usage, smaller projects, and tech labs. As a result, it is particularly well suited to users with Linux apps and virtualization requirements in addition to everyday storage needs.
Production users with standard NAS (NFS, SMB, iSCSI, S3) requirements are still advised to use TrueNAS CORE, which has over ten years of operation and stability. TrueNAS SCALE has inherited some of that maturity but has not yet completed its enterprise software quality lifecycle.
TrueNAS CORE is currently on version 12.0. With TrueNAS SCALE 22.02 out the door, the development team will now focus their efforts on the next major TrueNAS CORE 13.0 release.
The hardware that will run TrueNAS SCALE has the following minimum system requirements:
- Dual-Core 64-bit CPU
- 8 GB RAM (16 GB Recommended)
- 16 GB SSD Boot Device
- 2 Identically Sized Devices
- Network Port
- Hardware RAID Not Required
TrueNAS SCALE is entirely free to download and use. So, what are you waiting for? Join the “Storage Freedom” movement and enjoy the benefits of open-source economics.