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TrueNAS SCALE is a great Network Attached Storage platform that could easily serve just about any need for the home and home office as well as small businesses and enterprise companies. It’s robust, flexible, reliable, free and open-source.

I’ve already covered how to take your first steps with TrueNAS SCALE, which included creating your first Pool, user and Share. This time around, I’m going to show you how to add and use groups, to make your TrueNAS SCALE admin life a bit easier.

If you come from a Linux or UNIX background, you fully understand how groups can make things considerably more efficient. By employing groups, you have better control over permissions of directories and files without having to manage them on a per-user basis. Instead, you create a group, assign the exact permissions and ownership you need, and then add users to the group. The same idea holds with using groups on a NAS platform such as TrueNAS SCALE.

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Let’s walk through the process of creating a group and assigning. It’s a bit confusing, as it’s all handled through Access Control Lists, but I’m going to cut to the chase and show you how easy it can be.

What you’ll need

The only things you’ll need to make this work are a running instance of TrueNAS SCALE and the root user credentials to log into the GUI.

How to create a group

The first thing we’re going to do is create a group. Log into your TrueNAS SCALE instance as the root user and click Credentials in the left navigation. In the resulting pop-out menu (Figure A), click Local Groups.

Figure A

The Credentials pop-out menu in TrueNAS SCALE.

In the resulting window (Figure B), click Add in the upper right corner.

Figure B

The TrueNAS SCALE group listing window.

In the next pop-out window (Figure C), give the group a name and click Samba Authentication if you plan on using groups in Samba shares.

Figure C

Naming and configuring your new group.

Once you’ve finished, click Save and you’re ready to move on.

How to add a user to a group

The next step is to add a user to the new group. Go back to Credentials and click Users. Locate and click the user you want to edit and, in the pop-up (Figure D), click Edit.

Figure D

Details for a local TrueNAS user.

In the user edit window (Figure E), add the new group from the Auxiliary Groups drop-down.

Figure E

Adding the user to the newly created group.

Scroll down and click Save when finished.

How to add a group to a data set

I’m going to assume you’ve not only created a pool but a data set. It is within the data set that you can then assign local groups. Let me show you how.

Go to Storage and then expand your entries until you see the data set in question. Click the three-dot menu for that data set and click View Permissions and then click the pencil icon (Figure F).

Figure F

The current permissions of our data set.

Because this is a data set, it should already have basic ACLs assigned so you don’t have to add them manually. In the resulting window (Figure G), you should see Owner Group near the top. If you select the drop-down you won’t find your local groups listed — it only lists the built-in groups.

Figure G

The ACL options for our data set.

Here’s the trick: Instead of selecting the group from the drop-down, type the name of the local group you just created. Once you’ve done that, click Save Access Control List.

At this point, any member of that group should have access to the data share. And that’s all there is to it. Create as many groups as you need, assign users to those groups and then add the groups, as needed, to your data sets.

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