Advice for SMB NFS filer and VM hosts


Looking for some guidance on where to look for SMB filer options. We’re a small engineering house who have a mix of Ansys and semiconductor EDA workflows plus a bunch of service requirements such as license servers, job scheduling, software CI/CD workflows. Our current compute usage can probably be handled by a single 2U4N machine and I’m trying to work out what our storage and VM requirements might look like. I think we just need shared NFS access for our compute needs.

We have c.10 active users and expect that to grow to c.30 in 5 years so we want something that can scale. We have limited rack space so I’m keen to investigate storage options that would enable us to run VMs on top for our services.

Will off the shelf solutions from Synology/QNAP work for us or should we be looking at solutions from HPE/Dell? We’re in the UK so don’t think the iXSystems stuff is available. Where do you go to step up from Synology/QNAP but don’t have the budget for high end multi-node systems? Is there such a think as a 1 or 2 node HCI setup?


You can get TrueNAS with IX Systems hardware in the UK but it will be more expensive than a Synology which does make some solid and affordable NAS systems that can be used for both user file storage and NFS or iSCSI storage for a hypervisor.

I recently reviewed this SA3400D HA model but there are a few others as well.