5 min read

Unlocking Storage Power: Installing TrueNAS within Proxmox

Hard Disk

In a world full of smartphones and computers, we are increasingly being dependent on reliable and secure storage solutions. Whether it’s our precious family photos or any important documents, we always look into methods to store them and maintain backups of the same.

One of the best storage solutions that we can deploy easily in our Home Lab is TrueNAS. But what exactly is a TrueNAS? Let’s explore a little on TrueNAS.

Understanding TrueNAS:

TrueNAS is a powerful data storage and management system designed to simplify your data storage needs. It uses techniques like data mirroring and redundancy to protect the data from hardware failures. It can take backups automatically and is expandable. We can add more drives as our data grows. Also, we can create user accounts and give specific data access to users.

The main advantage of TrueNAS is that it is open source and has a vast community that uses it as a daily driver. It is overall the best storage solution that is easy to configure and use.

Note: TrueNAS uses ZFS File System. ZFS works better when the system has more RAM to use as it uses caching often. So more the RAM, the better it performs. TrueNAS Scale recommends we have at least 8 GB of RAM in our system.

In the last article, we configured our Proxmox installation and made it ready for our use. In this article, we’ll start with the steps to install the TrueNAS Scale in our Home Lab.

Installing TrueNAS Scale:

  • The first step is to download TrueNAS Scale OS from its official website. We’ll be installing this OS inside a Virtual Machine on our Proxmox. To do that, we’ll hop back into our proxmox login. Upon login, click on the server name in the left navigation bar and click on the local option. Now select the ISO Images option and click on the Upload button. Select the ISO file which we have downloaded now and click on the Upload button.
Proxmox Upload ISO Image
  • We have successfully uploaded the ISO file to our server and can begin our installation now. Click on the Create VM button which is present on the top right corner.
Proxmox Create VM General
  • We need to give an ID and a name for this Virtual Machine. Since we are creating a VM for TrueNAS, I’ll name it TrueNAS. Once done, click on the Next button.
Proxmox Create VM OS
  • Now we need to specify the OS that we need to install in the VM. Since we have already uploaded the OS to our server, we’ll simply click on the dropdown and select the uploaded file. We’ll leave the other options as it is and proceed to the next step.
Proxmox Create VM System
  • We now need to select the BIOS type and other related options. We’ll just enable the checkbox next to the Qemu Agent and leave the other options as it is which would do just fine. The Qemu Agent is needed so that we’ll be able to shut down and start our TrueNAS VM properly from within our Proxmox itself.
Proxmox Create VM Disks
  • Now we need to select the size of the disk where this TrueNAS VM OS will be installed. 32 GB would be more than enough disk size for the TrueNAS installation to store its OS files. Only the OS-related files will be stored in the space. We won’t be storing our actual files here. We will be configuring the actual disks where we will be storing our files in the further steps.
Proxmox Create VM CPU
  • We now need to select the number of cores that we will be allocating for this TrueNAS VM. The actual number of cores present would be different across various systems and depends on the CPU that you are using. This number should be configured based on the cores available on your CPU and the number of VMs that you're running/will be running on the server. I’ll just leave it at 2 for now.
Proxmox Create VM Memory
  • Now we need to select the RAM that we’ll be allocating for this TrueNAS VM. The minimum RAM recommended officially by TrueNAS is 8 GB We’ll go with the same. But the higher the RAM, the better the performance as TrueNAS is based on the ZFS File System.
Proxmox Create VM Network
  • We now need to configure our network settings. The defaults would do just fine.
Proxmox Create VM Confirm
  • We can go through the configuration of the TrueNAS VM here and confirm the same. If any changes are required then we can go back and forth to make the required changes. Once done we can click on the Finish button and the TrueNAS VM will be created.
Proxmox TrueNAS VM Console
  • Now on the left navigation bar, we can see that the VM has been created. Just click on the same and click on the Console option. We’ll start the TrueNAS VM to begin with the installation process.
  • Now we can follow the onscreen instructions to get our TrueNAS installed on the VM. In the screen that appears select the install option.
Proxmox TrueNAS VM Console
  • Now we need to select the disk in which the TrueNAS will be installed. We need to press the space bar on the keyboard to select the drive. We’ll select the 32GB drive that we just created during the VM creation.
Proxmox TrueNAS VM Console
  • We now need to create the default user using which we’ll be logging in just like the default root user that we have for our Proxmox login. On this screen, we’ll select the Admin user option and proceed.
  • Now we need to create a password for the admin user that we just selected. Give a password for the same and then proceed.
Proxmox TrueNAS VM Console
  • Since we are installing the TrueNAS OS as a VM, it doesn't matter which option we give here. We’ll just give Yes here and proceed with the EFI Legacy boot option.
  • Now the TrueNAS OS will begin to install and a bunch of installation text will appear on the screen. Once done it would prompt for a reboot. Select the reboot option once it appears and the VM will reboot.

With this step completed, we’ve successfully set up the TrueNAS Scale within our Proxmox environment in our Home Lab.

In this article, we’ve laid the foundation for our TrueNAS journey on our Home Lab and have covered the step-by-step instructions on how to install the same in our proxmox environment.

In the next article, we will delve into how to add hard disks to our TrueNAS installation and use them to access and manage our files effectively. Stay tuned for more detailed instructions on expanding our Home Labbing capabilities.

Happy Homelabbing!!!