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So I have my HTPC with a few hard drives. SSD for the OS, then 1TB is just OneDrive and the other (WD Black 4TB) for movies and shows.
Its more than enough for me as I don't save too much stuff. Only favorite movies and some shows. Otherwise I watch and delete, unless it goes to the favorite library.

I am not too concerned about backups, but what the hell? I like working on this stuff so I want to build a NAS to back up all my stuff up from the HTPC and I also have another computer that's a powerful desktop that I use for my work (VMware) and my wife uses for CG. So back up these two to the NAS

So the solution:
1st solution: Add a number of drives into the Beast (name my desktop that I use for work). Its a large modular case that has plenty of room for expansion. Do a RAID 10 and use my VMware environment to install FreeNAS in it and back up all the data up there. Don't have too much experience with RAID through VMware though
2nd solution: Get an EMC, WD, or another brand ready to go NAS and forget about it
3rd solution: Something else?
 

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Something else: HP Proliant Microserver (G8 or older G7 such as N54L) or Lenovo TS140 (with Xeon processor), with software of your choice (WHS2011 is great but hard to find, XPEnology is easy to install and use, Freenas, and others are also popular).


You could also repurpose an old machine (at the expense of server centric features such as ECC memory, etc.)


This is hardly more difficult to set up than Solution 1 or 2, is relatively cheap, faster than 2 and avoids mixing genres (work/fun).
 

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I'd agree, if your budget allows it keep your NAS appliance separate from your work computer. FreeNas or Nas4free is not designed to run in a VM plus you wouldn't get much benefit from it as a VM anyway. I'd repurposed an older computer or assemble something different with enough storage and do it right.
 
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