True, adding the whole virtualization aspect and container support might caused this. I genuine when testing it out didnt like the new theme or steering me away from being storage server into something else.
I agree, I think that FreeNAS feels like it is drifting now. Is it storage, is it a hypervisor? Any BHyve for normal users, really? The new interface looked cool, but failed to even run when I tested it. They are a tiny company with few resource trying to do way too much. The old FreeNAS product was bad enough, I know loads of places loses data or access to data either because FreeNAS itself was glitchy or because it failed the "front loaded engineering" design principle and left customers in a tight position leading to failure.
If the only goal is an open source file server (we call this a SAM-SD, there is a section of the forum just for that) then the most likely recommendations for an OS will be openSuse Tumbleweed or Fedora. CentOS and Ubuntu are fine choices too. FreeBSD is excellent, but less well known.
You make it sound as though the wise choice here would be to install OpenSuse etc direct to the hardware.
So in a "read back" mode, this tells us that the data stored here isn't important so there isn't really anything to worry about. If you do the expansion and it causes data loss, they can't be upset as they don't see value in the data. This also tells us that the servers shouldn't be there, because if they aren't backed up and they aren't a caching system then you shouldn't have them at all.
That list makes hardware RAID sound safer than ZFS, which is probably not quite true. But is the case is that the average implementation of hardware RAID is quite a bit safer than the average implementation of ZFS software RAID. Hardware RAID "handles everything for you" protecting you from most bad decisions. ZFS leaves all the nitty gritty details up to you which makes it super, duper easy to mess something up and leave yourself vulnerable. This is exacerbated by the Cult of ZFS problem and loads of misinformation swirling about its use. So the average person using ZFS is not even remotely prepared for what is needed to use it safely.
Some problems that we see people have when using ZFS without fully understanding storage:
Believing that ZFS doesn't use RAID (this is extremely common.)
Believing that RAIDZ is magic, rather than a brand name, and that normal RAID concerns do not apply. So we often see people implement RAID 5 in reckless, insane situations using "it's RAIDZ" as an excuse as if RAIDZ isn't just RAID 5 - literally just a brand name for RAID 5.
Treating common features common to all RAID systems as "unique" and believing that ZFS has feature after feature of protection that makes the need to protect against storage failure unnecessary.
Not understanding hot swap and blind swap differences and creating systems that they do not know how to address should a drive fail.
Believing that ZFS being magic is not at risk from power loss and failing to protect caches from power issues - something that they are not normally used to dealing with as hardware RAID does this for you.
Not understanding the CPU and memory needs of ZFS, especially with features like dedupe and RAIDZ3.
Ignoring common RAID knowledge and thinking that using ZFS means not using mirroring technologies.
It was amazing that Scott found it so fast. I was on the Windows side of things. Inside Windows they were using the iSCSI initiator to connect to the FreeNAS. All the sudden Windows would just log a ton of iSCSI events and go down.
I looked up the events and most people resolved them by putting the iSCSI traffic on a separate NIC. This happened two days in a row at about the same time each day. I was looking at snapshot, backup, etc times when Scott found it in the FreeNAS logs.
Why are you using FreeNAS? Every conversation ever with someone asking should I use FreeNAS or something else for my storage device, @scottalanmiller has always had the same answer. Use CentOS, or purchase a Synology.
So where did this come up that you are on a FreeNAS box?
Because we support customers. That's how customers work.
When you say "in a business capacity"... Do you mean any business or just certain sizes? What is the reasoning? I know you think the FreeNAS community can be very brash/vile at times based on some of your earlier posts to people asking about FN.
Basically you are getting a highly stateful system where support is critical but in a crippled manner compared to just using FreeBSD. You are getting something easy to set up but difficult to support. If anything goes wrong you are in very tough shape. And updates come a bit behind. So you have a number of small issues that all add up to a not very business friendly product.
Looping back to this, in the past month I've worked with three different companies that all experienced significant data loss or downtime because of their choice of FreeNAS. Two suffered from not having front loaded their engineering and had an inability to support their servers during routine operations and caused major outages because of it along with significant cost for repairs, and one company that lost its data because of unnecessary bugs in the FreeNAS GUI code that would have been avoided has they been simply on FreeBSD.
Additionally this past week FreeNAS 10 "Coral" was demonstrated to be so incredibly unstable a month after being released that they had to recall the release and revert to a "beta" status indefinitely. For a trivial end user application this would be bad, for a critical storage infrastructure component on which companies need to have rock solid faith, it's unthinkable.
Literally just got off of the phone with someone who had a FreeNAS bug cause a system to become useless, just like the one case that happened today. But instead of it being the JPE encouraging a mistake, the same problem happened through a GUI bug. One of the big risks that the JPE introduces is that the GUI is all "extra" points of failure and has nowhere near the testing of the standard OS tools. So a little big can cause a lot of damage, as it did. The entire SAN had to be replaced due to a small bug in the FreeNAS interface.
The FreeNAS community really shows just how important it is to avoid products like FreeNAS. It's built on good tech, but the issues are that the community is horrible, only tiny non-storage expert shops use it and it is broadly misunderstood. FreeNAS doesn't make any of the technology, they just repackage it. So the vendor and their community all lack the basic knowledge of what they have and the stuff that they repeat just gets worse and worse.
If this was the FreeBSD community, talking about the same technologies, the answers and approaches would be completely different. Enterprises use FreeBSD every day. They do not use FreeNAS. Once you limit yourself to a "non-expert" product, the idea of using a community for assistance causes a breakdown in dangerous ways.