Question NAS: Faster than UnRaid?


Oct 23, 2012
Been using unRaid for years, very reliable low maintenance. Using mostly NAS-rated Red HDDs and have about 9TB of data on them, however there's probably <200GB of data that I want protected (i.e. which is why the whole array runs with parity, RAID, etc.).
I also run Plex media server directly on it, but that only serves up to one client device as my other is a HTPC where I play the files via Kodi directly from the raw mkv files anyways on the NAS.

My issue with it is that it is slow. It's slow transferring data to it from my ethernet attached network devices; and it's also slow for the HDDs to spin up when I'm looking to locally stream mkv files from the NAS to my HTPC, network players, etc.

Is there other solutions that would be much faster, yet still allow me to store that much data? My budget is high for this, but I probably don't have a budget to get 9TB of SSD :))

For the <200GB I care about (personal files & family photos/videos), I'd welcome a great even alternate solution for that too if I can move to something that is much faster to use.
What's slow to you? If you drag a video file between your PC and NAS. What is the transfer rate in mbps or MBps?

What type of drives do you have? I know you say Red are they Red 5,400 RPM or Red 7,200RPM? What capacities are the drives? Higher capacity drives tend to have higher linear throughput?

What are you using for a NAS? Make and model if a commercial NAS or specs for home-brew? As you use Plex server. Transcoding HD video can be CPU intensive. Depending on the source file and destination requirements.

200GB of important data. Parity isn't a backup option. You should have a backup drive. Better yet an off site backup like Backblaze for really important data. As these are small files, making I/O speeds important and there isn't much. Perhaps these should be on an SSD?

How about your network? Is it all hardwired? Is it all gigabit? Is there an issue where some cable or keystone jack is CAT 5 screwing up everything and limiting you to 100mbps. If there is WiFi are you at least maximizing it with hardwired access points and 802.11AC?

OS, small files and databases should be on an SSD for best performance. The likes of Plex server should be on the SSD. I'm talking about the actual server portion, cache, database files and so forth. Not the video files. HDD are plenty fast for video. Any decent size 7,200RPM drive will max out a Gigabit Ethernet connection when moving a video file.