Linus Investing in a New NAS Software – Let’s Discuss!

Linus Investing in a New NAS Software – Everything We Know!

It’s been the story in the world of NAS that has been bubbling around in the background for a little over four months, that Linus (one of, if not THE, most well-known tech YouTuber in the world) of ‘Linus Tech Tips’ and ‘LMG’  declared that he was considering (and eventually proceeding with) a sizable investment in a newly developing NAS software platform. This has been hotly discussed in the usual forums and communities, with several references by Linus himself in the popular WAN Show in the months that followed. So, as I hope to be testing, reviewing, using and perhaps even recommending this future software – I wanted to follow this story as it develops and see how it pans out. Below I will be keeping track of individual references that I spot (or, more likely, keener-eyed users highlight to me in the comments here and on YouTube – hundreds of thousands of eyes are better than two, right?). I will be regularly updating this article as more information appears, but for now, here is the TL:DR:

  • Linus (LTT / Linus Media Group) has invested $250,000 in a new NAS software platform in development.
  • It is a comparative middle ground between ease of use turnkey NAS OS’, Powerful in capabilities and features, but a NAS Software that is suitable for DiY / Build Your Own NAS Enthusiasts.
  • Designed to be User friendly (something lacking in the bulk of open-source or even paid NAS software OS’). Even easier than what unRAID and TrueNAS deliver today.
  • (Alleged/Suspected by many) JonP (Jon Panozzo), a former UnRAID/Limetech employee is one of the developers – ( Possibly ‘Eric Schultz’ (long-time UnRAID vet) too, but that has less supportive credence online
  • This new NAS Software platform has backing from a big name(s) in NAS, not just Linus’ own investment in the new company.

What follows below are references found online that either come from officially credible sources or sources with proven validity. I have included links to the sources and, in the case of YouTube, quoted the parts. If you plan on lifting part of this for your own site, I would greatly appreciate a backlink and credit. I can’t twist your arm, of course – I just have to trust you!

Direct and Comparative Reference to the NAS Software Investment, Amidst the WD Cyber Incident in early 2023

WAN Show April 14th 2023 (Following discussion regarding the WD Security Incident in late March) – HERE

“This is the perfect opportunity for me to talk about that investment that I made in the new NAS company. There’s no proper solution to this yet whether it’s UnRAID, whether it’s TrueNAS, there’s a level of user knowledge expectation that I think is not reasonable for me to just take my brother-in-law and say ‘hey, take some computer, put this on it and just, copy all your stuff to it!’ It’s not reasonable. On the other side, you’ve got products like this where increasingly, by abstracting everything, even on the hardware side, away from the user you are introducing attack vectors like,what the crap right! And so the middle ground is supposed to be something like a Synology. But honestly, I find, A) the product itself kind of obtuse, and B) why am I paying like 700 for an Intel atom? Yeah with no proper expansion – it’s ridiculous! It’s the Apple model, pay way too much for the hardware! And you know what, to their credit, the software is super cool, but it’s not perfect and what the heck, I could be running this on like a forty-dollar crap box that I picked up on Facebook Marketplace, not this thing, and I could put three times as many hard drives in it.”

(regarding initial public reveal/promotions)

So they’re planning to do some kind of like pre-launch event and we’re trying to figure out sort of what that looks like because we don’t really support like Kickstarter Indiegogo type stuff. Um, but, the flip side of it is that these aren’t just strangers to me. I know these guys. I obviously believe strongly enough in it that if I put in my own money. (after being asked about the launch methodology). “So it would be a fundraiser, like a presale. What I suggested, and I don’t know what the ultimate form will look like, is some kind of lifetime subscription, but like ‘for-real-forever-trust-me-bro-you-will-always-have-whatever-our-highest-tier-is’.” (later on). “Like, I just, because, for real, it’s not that hard a thing to do! Just don’t f&@k your most dedicated supporters right (in reference to WD taking My Cloud Services offline) like, how hard is that? So, anyway, one of the things, but there is obviously some stuff to figure out, because one of the things they want to build in is cloud replication, encryption, etc and they were looking and going ‘ok, well, what if we include some base amount of cloud storage in perpetuity’ and I was like ‘that’s madness’. That doesn’t make sense, especially because I’m looking at this product storage going ‘this is the simple enthusiast NAS OS”. Cloud Storage forever? I think Google proved that that can get great headlines, but is not sustainable.Realistically, one of the big features that I am pushing to these guys is NAS-to-NAS backups, like buddy-buddy backups. I don’t want my stuff in the cloud! Like, want I don’t that!” (a little later on). “Super cool. So, from my point of view, alot of the stuff that’s really cool about this product is, and what I want to help guide towards, is not that cloud backup anyway. So if they build cool reverse proxy stuff that can handshake between those systems so you don’t need to open ports – then there’s a little bit of overhead there. But, if it’s just actual drives sitting in a data center that just has a monthly cost, I don’t think that makes sense because everything that I am involved in, I like to preach sustainability. It might not have that exponential growth that the silicon valley model requires, but what it is, is still gonna exist later because it is sustainable, instead of promising something that we can’t keep up with, right?”

Brief Mention, Regarding Linus’ Motivation Towards the Investment

WAN Show March 11th 2023 – HERE

(Following discussion of the Silicon Bank Collapse after a call on air with a team member of the NAS software investment company) But if, like this NAS software that we, I have no idea if I am gonna get anything back from this, they just, they are creating a product that I really want to exist. It’s like a simpler, user-friendly and yet still powerful NAS solution for DiY and enthusiasts. And they’re completely in like noses-pressed-against-the-screens, full-going mode!”

Further Reference Confirming the Investment and a fraction More Information on the NAS Software Devs

WAN Show Jan 20th 2023 – HERE

“Oh, I need to talk about the new angel investment disclosure. So, I had talked recently about how there was a NAS product that I was really excited about the future of. I have a couple more things to share.” (discussing that he felt the audience supported the decision on the NAS investment, as well as content independence and trust).

“This one” (NAS investment, with comparison to previous laptop investments) “is more cut and dry just because it is a category of product that we do not cover to the same degree. So, it’s NAS software and the bottom line is that enterprise NAS solutions, they have their place but current operating systems tend to assume that the person managing and configuring the server is an I.T Expert, and not like an enthusiast whos into it. But someone who actually has some training or has done some extensive research. They can be frustrating and inaccessible to small creators, consumers, prosumers and enthusiasts. So, the goal of this project is to design an intuitive and accessible home server solution for all users. The new company has described themselves as an impressive team, I love you guys! They have a team for sure, I look forward to being impressed.”

(going into a little more detail, a little later in the WAN show)

“Fine, I’ll bite. Two long-time tech veterans who recently completed an 8-year stint at unRAID where they were responsible for modernisation of the implementation of Docker and Virtual Machines GPU Passthrough and rebranding and marketing, respectively. We are not going to get too far into the weeds, but I am officially their angel investor and I can expect some updates in the future. I’m really excited! They’re cool enough that I don’t even have a proper legal document for my shares and they already have the cheque. So, either I just got ripped super hard, or these guys are super chill and I’m right about that, and this is gonna be awesome. There really is no middle ground here, I think!

First Disclosure of the NAS Investment

First Mentioning on the WAN Show, Dec 10th 2022 – HERE

“I have to disclose another investment. I haven’t actually made it yet, but I’ve said I’m gonna do it because I think it’ll probably be fine, but I haven’t actually written a check. So if you guys are ultimately super mad about it then we can just not do that so it’s not too late. But they really needed an answer and I think it’s pretty chill. I’m not I can’t really name any names but I will try and give as much detail as I can in the interest of you guys understanding what it is about without causing any problems for the people involved so someone who worked on a network storage product that I have really enjoyed using for a long time is no longer with that company and has a plan to create a NAS software that is basically everything that I’ve been asking for about that software and everything that, he and I have agreed on for a long time, needs to be done to make DIY NAS more accessible to just average people.

So he is planning to start up and has asked me to come in as like an angel investor and basically give him a year or two of runway to get this thing off the ground. Obviously, there’s some Equity changing hands but it’s not about that for me and it’s not about that for him. He’s already got some really interesting partnerships and he’s already got some money from an established NAS software company on whose product he will be basing his on, so there’s already some momentum, and I am very supportive of his vision for it and what an easy user-friendly NAS should be.”


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      25 thoughts on “Linus Investing in a New NAS Software – Let’s Discuss!

      1. I don’t know if this option needs to be “Truly” powerful. If the NAS allowed SMB, some form of parity, and an easy and secure way to connect to other NAS boxes that would be more than enough for the target customer and for those of us who want major power its still a great idea to run it as a VM or setup a dedicated secondary box running this just for critical data. This would be huge for those who want to self host Nextcloud and Bitwarden because it removes that fear of loosing really critical stuff due to a house fire.

      2. Sorry but I’m not trusting my data to something basically built in someone’s shed. Happy to sit on the higher price / low risk side of the spectrum.

      3. Hope this happens but its going to take way more than 250K.

        TrueNAS was nice but unnecessarily complicated. Unraid is just plain jankie, found myself crossing my fingers and hoping it rebooted successfully was too much so I bit the bullet and gave into Synology

      4. I liked unraid for its flexability to use any kind of hardware it docker and vm software. But I like dsm for its desktop backup software, back to Google cloud, its Web based desktop usability, and remote access.

      5. To be honest this sounds like a joke to me. Really? A complete OS system? By two or so employees? With only 250.000? Dude I’m a web developer and a simple website can take up to 6 months to develop. An OS is maybe 1000x more complicated to do so. Maybe they should invest on the hardware, something like storaxa, they can definitely do it and with less headaches for them

      6. I’d like to be able to install this on my Storaxa NAS box – if the Storaxa project is successful and assuming the success of Linus’ investment.

        I”ve always liked DSM, but I’m not a fan of Synology NAS hardware, (certainly not at their pricepoints) and I have longed for a similarly usable NAS OS for the DIY market.

      7. Personally I do t think that middle ground is possible while the desire is to provide the fully suite of services. DNS, DHCP, LDAP, mail servers, Web servers etc etc service do need a level of knowledge as to implementing it correctly.

        That said, if “middle ground” means not offering such services then there are a lot of possibilities. That is, if the only target is to give a clean solution built around DIY hardware that offers file sharing, plex and say offside backup/replication (and the like) then yeah… I hope they succeed.

        But the moment you’re opening up your “devices” as something that is addressable from the wider internet the administer of that device *MUST* have a level of base k owledge beyond the “average” to be able to protect it.

        Easy as DSM’s firewall is, exactly how many know how to effectively leverage and manage it??

      8. No way 250k, or even a million will be sufficient to develop a robust backend that makes front end friendly. Surely there’s other investors involved for this to be realistic. My estimates are 2mil for an alpha, another 2 mil to get beta out, maybe 3 mil toward polished version. The skills required are six-figure positions for atleast 5 seasoned developers. Those expenses don’t include possible licensing of network related IP

      9. LTT shared a video about their networking/server setup, they want 10Gbe everywhere with handful of 100Gbe joints,
        they are moving onto Proxmox with most of the stuff, and using TrueNAS for storage,
        seeing specs of upcoming ASUS Pro WS W790E-SAGE SE I guess it’s fairly clear what can we expect from close future “server” hardware, and something like 28 PCIe x4 NVMEs in one box can be one of them, so the software will have to be VERY scaleable in that regard

      10. I’ll stick with Synology. I am paying for the peace of mind and the software features. I am glad they have Ryzen processors, 923+ is high on my list to replace the two two bay Synology NAS’s I have now. They will be the “cold storage” backups to the new NAS. Love what you do!