Cheapskate’s NAS Migration from Unraid to Openmediavault

For decades, I come across a lot of abandoned computers and recycled parts out of them.

This article is about the recycled Dell Vostro 220s with LGA771 to LGA775 Mod I mentioned in the last post.

It was running Unraid with a low power Xeon L5410 and 2 GB of RAM for many years. The only repair was a PSU replacement two years ago.

However, the USB drive has been weared out recently. I know this is not Unraid’s fault but I have decided to go with Open Source when possible.

I wasn’t so willingly when adopting Unraid in the first place, but it turned out really satisfying except its proprietary licensing.

Old Stories

My first time setting up a NAS system was during high school with FreeNAS. I still remember the split of NAS4Free and OpenMediaVault, then the renaming of XigmaNAS and the shenanigans of TrueNAS.

I still love the way that how XigmaNAS handles things and there is still a backup machine running it with RAID 1 in my homelab.

But due to the low specs of this Vostro, I need the NAS system to:

  • run on USB drive with minimum wearing (to save SATA ports)
  • utilize HDDs with different sizes (drives are randomly recycled)
  • tolerant dying drives (old and/or with warnings)
  • not eating RAMs (only 2x1GB DDR2 available)
  • migrate without formating data (no extra drive for transport)

As you can see, the data on this system is not priority. It is designed to squeeze the last bit of utility out of retired drives.

These requirements exclude most options, and I have to rely on OMV plugins—FlashMemory + MergerFS + SnapRAID.

BTW, it’s interesting to see another shinobi was working on a very similar project.


I used a USB drive (USB1) with Ventory as installation media to boot OVM 6.5 image file, and another (USB2) low cost USB drive(2.0,32G) as system root.

Insert both USB drives, load omv6.5.iso from USB1 and install into USB2

Installation guide from the official wiki is detailed and friendly.

Use the web interface from another machine with default login credentials:


Configure the web console following the next part of the guide

Update OVM to 6.9

Install OMV-Extras following the next part of the guide

wget -O - | bash

Install FlashMemory Plugin

apt-get install openmediavault-flashmemory
  • Goto to System - Plugin

  • Goto Storage - Filesystem - Mount

    • My configuration of drives is 2TBx1 & 1TBx3. After mounting all 4 drives, apply changes and the percentage of used space on each drives would appear.

    • Note: In my case, the 2TB parity drive needs to be erased due to structure issue. This does not cause data loss to the entire system.

  • Goto Storage - mergerfs - select 3 of the data storaging drives

    • A merged drive will be visible under Filesystems
  • Goto Storage - Shared folders - Create

    • Select the merged drive
  • Goto Services - Snapraid - Drives - Create

    • Select the 3 smaller drives and check Content and Data

    • Create another with the largest parity drive and check Parity

  • Goto Services - SnapRAID - Drives - Tools Icon - Sync

    • Wait for this initial Sync, when finished, run a Scrub
  • Goto Users - Create an user account for access

  • Goto Services - SMB/CIFS - Settings - Enable

  • Goto Services - SMB/CIFS - Shares - Add the shared folder

Now it’s time to add this share from client devices, and all the old files are intact.

And good bye Unraid.