FreeNAS – File Server

When creating a file server there were a few options, but I chose FreeNAS because it is actively getting updated and re-invented and it has a vast amount of features that I plan to use in the future such as TFTP, FTP, SNMP Monitoring, Syslog Monitoring, and plenty more in the works.  Here is a basic tutorial on just setting up file shares for a Windows LAN.

First after you have located an old computer with the minimum system requirements found here you just need to download the ISO for the FreeNAS version that fits you best.   There are a few versions in BETA right now and of course the choice between 64 and 32 bit.  All the downloads can be found here.  Following downloading and install the base OS is where the fun begins.

There are essentially 4 steps to completing this:

STEP 1: Adding the Volume

Click on the Storage Tab on the top, then Create Volume.

In this pop-up menu you need to check the box next to the HDD you wish to use and then the filesystem type, I would pick ZFS as it seems to have more options later on.  And then hit Add Volume.

STEP 2: Creating the CIFS Share

Click on the Sharing tab on the top and then Windows sub-tab, and then Add Windows Share.

Simply enter the Name (just documentation purposes), Comment (Also just for Documentation), Path which is where the volume is, and the remaining settings are perfect as is.

STEP 3: Turning on the CIFS Service

This is where the meat of the configuration happens. Click on the the wrench to configure the CIFS Service.

Authentication Model: Local User
NetBIOS Name: Hostname of the server
Workgroup: Your workgroup or domain name
Description: Documentation notes
Everything leave as default

After that hit the ON/OFF switch to activate the switch.

STEP 4: Mapping the new CIFS Drive to your local machine

On your local machine you need to either type in the Search Programs and Files, if you have windows 7, or open Run, if you have windows XP, and then type in \\HOSTNAME or \\IP ADDRESS and a windows folder will open with the documents on the server.  You then need to click on Tools on the top and there is a Map Network Drive option.  Click that and choose a letter. Click Finish and you are complete.

Enjoy and if you have any questions comment or send me a message on the contact me page


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