New User Basicbloglogo

Setting a Root Password, USB Flash Backups and Some Common and Popular Apps, Plugins and Docker Containers

In our second installment of the New Users Blog Series, we’ll start off by briefly discussing how to secure your Unraid server by setting a root password. Next, we’ll explain how to back up your Unraid OS USB flash device and why this is very important. On top of this, we’re giving a brief rundown of some must have applications, plug-ins and docker containers for your Unraid server. With over 600 (and counting) to choose from, it can be daunting for a new user to know where to even begin. In this blog, we’ll go through some popular ones that will help you unlock the full potential of your new Unraid rig. This list of apps, docker containers, and plugins is not meant to be the end all be all by and means but is rather a snapshot of a variety of popular options available for new users to get them started on their own particular use case. This blog is part 1 in a 2 part series.

Root Password

Once you get your Unraid server up and running, one of the first things you should do is set a root password. This will limit other users from accessing files or folders you don’t want them to. To set your password:

  1. go to the Unraid webgui and navigate to Users.
  2. Select “root” and type in your preferred password in the fields.
  3. Click apply/done.

If you happen to forget this password, the steps to reset it can be found here.

USB Flash Backups

Another key best practice that we always recommend for users is to back up your USB flash device that runs Unraid. Once your array is configured, a backup of your USB located off of your Unraid array is essential to avoid long server downtime in the unfortunate event of a USB flash device failure. The easiest way to do so is to go via the Unraid webGUI.

Go to: Main and under Boot Device, click Flash. From here, use the Flash Backup button to create a single zip file of the current contents of the flash device and store it locally on your computer or in another place you keep file backups (off of your Unraid array!).

US Bflasbackup

The absolute minimum to recover from a USB failure is a copy of the *.key file (located in the /config folder) and a printout or screenshot of your current disk assignments. This allows you to re-assign the disks in the array in the correct order, register the new USB device with your key and restart your array with default settings.

Common and Popular Plugins to Install

Unraid allows users to extend the functionality of the OS by creating enhancements through our Plugins system. Plugins allow community developers to add functionality not baked into the OS itself, and these works are maintained by the community:

IMPORTANT NOTE: While we thoroughly support all of our community developers and their efforts, any plugins you install are at your own risk. Bugs or issues with them should be reported to the respective community developer, not to Lime Technology.


Community Applications

Community Developer: Squid

One of the very first things to do with your Unraid server is to install the excellent Community Applications plug-in by Squid. This plug-in gives you an App Store like experience for the over 600 applications, plug-ins and docker containers available on your Unraid server!

To install, paste the following URL into the Plugins tab / Install PlugIn section:



After installation, a new tab called "Apps" will appear on your Unraid webGUI. Once installed, click over to the Apps tab and now you have a searchable and categorized database of applications created by our excellent community of Unraid Developers. From here on out, all new apps, plugins and containers you want to install can be found via Community Applications. 

Screen Shot 2019 06 25 at 11 37 26 AM

Fix Common Problems

Community Developer: Squid

As the name implies, this plugin is designed to find and offer up suggestions for a multitude of configuration errors and problems across numerous aspects of your Unraid server.

After install, you will see Fix Common Problems within Settings → User Utilities. Once in, the plugin will launch a manual scan and give you the option to set the background scan settings parameters. Scans can be scheduled to run automatically in the background hourly, daily, weekly, and monthly.

For every error or warning that this plugin finds, a suggested course of action will also be displayed. Additionally, should you seek additional help for any error or warning, the errors are all logged in your syslog so that people helping you can easily find the issue when you post your diagnostics in our forum.

Also, if the background scans find an issue, a notification (depending upon your notification settings in this plugin) will show warning you about any issues that arise.

For a complete list of the types of problems that this great plugin looks for, see the full forum post.


Unassigned Devices

Community Developer: dlandon

Unassigned Devices is used to mount and share non-array disks, remote SMB/ NFS shares, and iso files and it is compatible with any Unraid 6 release. You can also mount a UNC share on another system (SMB or NFS) and have it show in Unraid shares when browsing with Windows. This is called a Remote Share Mount. The UNC path is mounted locally and shared as a \\Tower share that can be accessed by SMB or NFS.

Access to Unassigned Devices shares defaults to Public with everyone having read/write access. User access can be enabled in the Unassigned Devices Settings. Access can be enabled by user for read/write, read only, or no access to Unassigned Devices shares. For all of the complete details of this popular plugin, see the support thread full of great info and best practices.

While there, buy dlandon a beer in thanks for this excellent plugin!

IMPORTANT: Any storage devices mounted using this plugin will NOT be protected by any parity, so take caution in storing important files on them.


CA Auto Update

Community Developer: Squid

Another handy utility plugin is the Community Applications Auto Update. This allows you to select which plugins and docker containers to automatically keep up to date as updates become available. Other options include notifications on when updates are completed, day delays in updating, update check frequency, custom crons and more!

This is part 1 in a 2 part series. Part 2 can be found here.

What is your favorite app, plugin or container on your Unraid server?

Let us know in the forum!