FreeNAS 8.0.1-BETA1 Available

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The first preview of the upcoming 8.0.1-Release for FreeNAS is available for testing. If you test this beta and find any bugs, please report them on the freenas-testing mailing list.

From the announcement:

Since the release of FreeNAS 8.0 it has seen widespread use and testing. We’ve been hard at work fixing the issues users have encountered and reported, as well as continuing to add functionality to FreeNAS 8.

This is a Beta release of what will be in 8.0.1-Release, at this point the system is for the most part feature complete and ready for wider testing.

Changes from 8.0-Release:

Upgraded software stack across the board. New version of django, dojo, istgt and many many other software upgrades.

The new version of istgt fixes issues people were having in a Hyper-V environment.

Vastly improved remote replication, with much better error notification as well as the ability to recover from failure situations.

Device names are no longer hard wired in the database. The system will keep track of drives as they shift device names, thus preventing drive reordering from confusing the GUI and allowing a drive that is already used to be shown as available.

Users can now be given an email address, making them more useful for use in cron jobs.

The ability to add cron jobs via the GUI is now present.

rsync jobs can now be created via the GUI. Additionally the system can act as an rsync server.

Shares are now done at the filesystem level instead of the volume level, allowing more flexibility to CIFS as well as UFS based shares.

The ability to add ZFS zvols has been added, they are now eligible to share as device extents in iSCSI.

The ZFS volume importer handles existing volumes with datasets better than the volume importer in 8.0-R did.

A bug that prevented network interface graphs from being generated was fixed.

It is now possible to set the MTU of lagg and vlan interfaces in the GUI.

System -> System Information now shows the available RAM.

Translations are now hooked up. You can check the status of a translation here. The GUI will use translations when possible when the language is changed in System -> Settings -> Advanced.

The GUI can show django tracebacks without the use of debugging tools such as firebug by selecting Show Tracebacks in case of fatal errors in System -> Settings -> Advanced.

The CLI menu on the console contains options to reset the GUI password as well as reset the system to factory defaults.

Active Directory now works properly with w2k8.


It is believed that anonymous access via AFP is non-functional.

An issue with the iSCSI target software prevents initiators from seeing multiple LUNs per target properly.

Usage of this Beta:

Depending on your use case, this Beta may fix critical bugs that were present in 8.0-Release making it unusable. For instance the drive renumbering issue or the ability to set an MTU on a VLAN may have rendered 8.0-R a non-option. In that case, this Beta is a good alternative. On the other hand, it has not undergone the testing that 8.0-R went through, nor has it seen much exposure to a wide variety of use cases, so in a situation where 8.0-R is working well it’s advisable not to upgrade.

Upgrades from all public releases of 8.0-X are supported and should work, whether an 8.0 Beta release, RC or 8.0-Release. Upgrades from arbitrary SVN revisions built from the public repo may not work properly due to database migration issues.

The migration tool for FreeNAS 0.7 is not included in this Beta, although it will be included in 8.0.1 at some point.

Introduction to FreeNAS 8.0 Article in June BSD Mag

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The June 2011 issue of BSD Mag has an article “Introducing FreeNAS 8.0″ on pages 14-18. You can download this issue for free here. The publisher has also made this article available as a separate PDF which is available here.

The article describes:

* the reasons behind the redesign
* differences between .7 and 8.0
* an overview of the graphical interface
* FreeNAS 8.0 resources

Requesting Software for 8.1 Plugin System

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Beginning with 8.1, FreeNAS will support the installation of software packages through the use of a plugin system. These packages will be in the form of PBIs (Push Button Installers) which is the packaging system used by PC-BSD.

There is a PBI forum where you can request the creation of PBIs. If there is an application that you’d like to see available for FreeNAS 8.1, read the README on the PBI Request Forum first as it contains instructions for determining if a PBI already exists and, if it does not, how to request that a PBI be created. More information about how the PBI request process works can be found in the PC-BSD Handbook.

If you’re interested in trying to create your own PBI, use the instructions in this page of the PC-BSD Handbook. It is important to note that the PBI format will be changing between versions 8.x and 9.x. If you are interested in creating a PBI for FreeNAS 8.1, follow the 8.x instructions.