I’m writing a guide I wish I had found before.
So you don’t have to bang your head against the wall as I did.
The adventure I’ve faced, step by step:
Before doing anything: DISCONNECT your disk drives. You don’t want any accident of mistake damaging your precious data. Leave only one disk or ssh or flash reserved for booting the operating system and that’s all! Seriously: disconnect your precious data before starting!
Rockstor can be installed from a pendrive, which is the most usual and popular way. However, you can also install the operating system and install Rockstor as a regular application on top of it. I strongly prefer the second option since I definitely prefer to have full control of what I’m installing, why I’m installing and how I’m installing.
In any case, as it is so common to virtually all NAS software around, burning a pendrive and installing from it seems to be the no-brainer choice, which would abbreviate my learning curve and my efforts. At least, that was what I’ve thought.
I couldn’t be more wrong than that. Long story short: despite all my efforts and tweaks in the BIOS, I was not able to install Rockstor into my old ASROCK Fatal1ty Killer board, which is
servingmy home well for 10 years now with its 32Gb of RAM.
OK. Back to the original idea. Let’s install OpenSUSE from scratch. I actually use OpenSUSE as main driver in my primary laptop… which is a joy… and which led me to Rockstar in the first place.
Download the full installation ISO from the link below and prepare a pendrive with it.
- The installation of OpenSUSE is pretty straightforward, which can be found easily on YouTube. There are only three crucial aspects to be observed, as I explain below:
6.1 Apparently (since I’m not 100% sure about it!) Rockstar requires NetworkManager. The “problem” is that OpenSUSE does not install it by default. You have to be extremely careful when you are installing OpenSUSE and read every single line of the pre-installation report which is presented just before you smash the big green button with a fateful [Install] written on it. If you do not change anything, OpenSUSE will install Wicked instead of NetworkManager. So, make sure you explicitly tell OpenSUSE installer to choose NetworkManager instead.
6.2. Do select a “Server” install. Do not select a “Transactional Server” install, since Rockstor does not work in this case, unfortunately.
6.3. Do not install any graphical environment. You don’t need that in a NAS. You will have Rockstor, right? Also, it takes precious time and chances are that you will get things wrong and will have to repeat the entire thing many times. You can always install a graphical environment later, if you really need. So, leave it for another time and save time now.
Have I mentioned networking? Obviously your server will need access to the internet. Make sure that the OpenSUSE installer is able to obtain a valid IP address, is able to configure online repositories, etc.
Let your system reboot for your first boot.
Login as root and perform the tasks as I explain before:
9.1. Install etckeeper
$ sudo zypper install etckeeper $ sudo etckeeper init
This is a neat way to keep track of changes in your /etc.
It is a glorified git repository (but could be mercurial or any other) for your /etc, which allows you rolling back mistakes, saving precious time reinstalling all over again from the pendrive and everything already explained above.
9.2. Install fail2ban and your preferred text editor.
$ sudo zypper install fail2ban zile nano vim
Fail2ban is absolutely mandatory everywhere you have an OpenSSH server. Better safe than sorry. Just install it. Period!
Choose your preferred text editor. Mine is zile, so I install only zile and I ignore nano and vim.
- Update the kernel
Just copy the lines below and execute them as root:
$ sudo zypper --non-interactive addrepo --refresh https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/Kernel:/stable:/Backport/standard/ Kernel_stable_Backport $ sudo zypper --non-interactive addrepo --refresh https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/filesystems/15.3/ filesystems $ sudo zypper --non-interactive --gpg-auto-import-keys refresh $ sudo zypper update --no-recommends --allow-vendor-change
Now it’s time to install Rockstor on top of OpenSUSE with a recent kernel.
Just copy the lines below and execute them as root, accepting the key, ignoring not certified repositories (otherwise nothing happens!):
$ sudo zypper addrepo https://download.opensuse.org/repositories/shells/openSUSE_Leap_15.3/shells.repo $ sudo zypper addrepo -f http://updates.rockstor.com:8999/rockstor-testing/leap/15.3/ Rockstor-Testing $ sudo zypper --non-interactive --gpg-auto-import-keys refresh $ sudo zypper install rockstor
If everything went according to plan, you will be greeted with Rockstor GUI by browsing to the IP address of your new NAS box.
Now the real adventure begins:
You will observe that you don’t have any storage defined in Rockstor. Yeah… it is obvious, since you had disconnected all your disk arrays before you’ve started. Try to reconnect only one array, one which could be sacrificed in case you make something really wrong and lose the entire array. See if Rockstor can recognize it.
From my experience, I had to reboot my computer before Rockstor was able to see the physical disks I’ve reconnected. Even in this case, Rockstor was able to see the disks, but not the disk array which they form.
Since my “guinea pig” disk array is ext4, I’ve just mounted it by hand, creating an entry for it in my /etc/fstab. Rockstor was able to see it after that. No reboot needed.
This is where my knowledge reaches its limits and I cannot help you without risking your data.
I’m sure you can find valuable help in this forum.
I hope it helps.
Long life to your data with Rockstor!