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Unraid Vs TrueNAS SCALE 2021

Often, I see a bunch of posts where someone is having a tough time considering between Unraid, or TrueNAS. so, I am going to write a quick summary based on my experiences, and recommendations.

This article is basically copied from my comment on reddit.



  • Disk Management: You add disks, you gain storage, simple as that.
  • Write Caching: Its method of write caching allows adding NVMe to a dedicated flash pool, enhancing performance.
  • Resources: Doesn't require many resources to run a decently performant install.
  • UI: Unraid has a fantastic UI that is very easy to use and navigate.
  • Power Usage: Only the drive containing the file you are using needs to be spun up.
  • Tiered Storage: Provides a rudimentary system of tiered storage.


  • Performance: Unless your data lives on your flash cache, you are limited to the performance of a single drive.



  • Storage Expansion: Adding storage means adding another vdev. In the future, online expansion will be added.
  • Performance: Data is read from and written to all disks in a vdev simultaneously.
  • UI: Scale is still in beta with bugs being worked out. The UI doesn't compare to Unraid's ease of use.


  • Resources: Requires ample RAM, especially ECC RAM.
  • Power Usage: When you read or write something, your entire array has to spin up.
  • Tiered Storage: Non-existent in TrueNAS.

Which is Better?

Neither. Each one fits into a unique niche. For a recommendation, specific needs should be considered.

  • Unraid: Suitable for non-technical users who want a NAS that "just works" with its simplistic UI and easy storage expansion.
  • TrueNAS: Better for technical users who don't mind tinkering, offering excellent performance and reliability with proper hardware.

Which One is Faster?

Neither. Each has its strengths. TrueNAS excels in spinning disk array performance, while Unraid minimizes bottlenecks with NVMe caching.

Personal Choice

I prefer TrueNAS for its performance, reliability, and control over data management.

Seriously, both are good platforms to choose from.

Update from 2024-

Since, this post was migrated from the old site, to this new static site- Just adding a quick update.

As of 2024, I no longer utilize TrueNAS Scale. I do, however continue to run Unraid.

Since- Unraid added native ZFS, this handles the one downside I originally had with Unraid.

As well- it offers a lot more flexibility in terms of storage support.