Building the Zyxel NAS326

Building the Zyxel NAS326

Editors note: Changing the featured pic on this post took the best part of an hour, thanks to the 2MB limit I had to get around. Done it before but this time it was harder. Seems on the web server I’m using (h2o) you specifically need to restart the php7.0-fpm service for the php.ini file to be reloaded

If you’ve been keeping up then you’ll know I’ve got a few projects to work on. That’s a good thing.

First cab off the rank is the build of my new Zyxel NAS 326

Unboxing and assembly

The assembly itself didn’t take long at all – 30 minutes including ripping the Seagate drives out of my old PC.

Pretty straightforward


I was unable to locate the box using Web page loads but pressing the copy button on the box did bugger all! (I got a beep after a few seconds)

Had to log into my router to discover the IP address assigned via DHCP, after which I added an entry to my /etc/hosts file before pointing my browser to the NAS.

I was then able to log in using the default admin/1234. Always change the default admin password!

Volume configuration – RAID1 beats JBOD

Decided to configure a RAID1 partition, as these drives are old and they are backing up a NAS which has been subject to constant use over the past 5 years. Unfortunately, this is how I get my luck in life.

Mounting the drive in Ubuntu

Turns out the bottleneck, time-wise, was finding out the share name for the CIFS mount. PEBKAC, I was thinking it was the volume name and chased my tail for a good hour here.

The breakthrough came when I stumbled upon an SO post showing the smbclient -L command:

That helped me see where the problem was, and I located the section in the Zyxel web config screen to modify users and shares.

I was then able to mount the drive in ubuntu

Don’t forget to update /etc/fstab so the share will automount on system reboot.

fstab requires a slightly different syntax

I’d suggest the following:

1. Create a new user for the CIFS connection. Make this user an admin so you have a backdoor into the box if required.
2. Create a new share. I’m using Public. Note the box comes with a few pre-configured shares i.e. Music, Photos, Video and admin.

BTW, there’s a good support forum here.

Up and running

With the drive mounted, I started copying files and my throughput from my WD Mybook Live to the Zyxel is 27 MB/sec

Arch Linux ARM – Lay of the land

1. Firstly, enable SSH then log into box using an admin account

Notice that BusyBox is being used as the shell.

As per this notice:

BusyBox combines tiny versions of many common UNIX utilities into a single
small executable. It provides minimalist replacements for most of the
utilities you usually find in bzip2, coreutils, dhcp, diffutils, e2fsprogs,
file, findutils, gawk, grep, inetutils, less, modutils, net-tools, procps,
sed, shadow, sysklogd, sysvinit, tar, util-linux, and vim. The utilities
in BusyBox often have fewer options than their full-featured cousins;
however, the options that are included provide the expected functionality
and behave very much like their larger counterparts.

2. Getting Linux version info

The Zyxel is using Arch Linux ARM, a port aimed at ARM architecture.

if you’re new to Arch Linux (as I am!) then this page is useful. It contains the core utilities

We can get some info on the chip via: cat /proc/cpuinfo

Running processes

ps is not very useful as it doesn’t seem to support any flags. Instead, use top

Taking a look at some of the running processes;

• smbd is the SMB (Server Message Block) daemon providing CIFS support
• httpd – Apache HTTP daemon. Config file is /etc/service_conf/httpd.conf
twonky media server
pure-ftp server
• sshd – SSH daemon
• nsuagent – Zyxel NAS Starter Utility agent (helps find NAS on network?)

Let’s take a look at the filesystem on the NAS 326:

We can see our RAID array is mounted at /dev/md2

As the NAS 326 has 512MB DDR III memory it uses a ramdisk to load the Linux kernel (I’m guessing!)

Networking Woes

I can’t see the outside world from the NAS326. A networking/routing issue no doubt.

A ping confirms we can’t see shit:

Let’s address that issue in a separate post, eh

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Hi Cra1gster, just to say thanks for posting this. Bought one over a year ago blindly believing i could get it to do what you have done above yet on using it i was bitterly disappointed yet not surprised at how bad it was – two tries later and having refrained from smashing it found your article and was brave enough to face it again. Finally figured out the nfs on it and was able to mount a samba share from the current seagate nas and copy the files across at around 20MB/s. Cheers!