FreeLink for the LinkStation Quad

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There is a possibility that you could brick your NAS with these instructions. Please make sure that you read the entire page carefully.

NOTE - this doesn't actually work yet so please disregard everything in here until I get things working.

This page will describe the steps taken to get FreeLink and subsequently Lenny on my newly acquired Quad (LS-QL/R5). Think of it as work in progress until I actually get Debian on it. And at the same time, any comments or suggestions are very welcome.


PLEASE read through all the steps here before you try anything.

High Level Steps

  1. Resize partitions (optional)
  2. Open up for telnet
  3. Install FreeLink image
  4. Configure for Debian
  5. Upgrade to Lenny
  6. Add software
  7. Final customization
  8. Backup the changes (while not technically needed, this is highly recommended)


Model LS-QL
  • 1 x 1TB Seagate Barracuda 7200.12
  • 3 x 1TB WS Caviar Green
Firmware 1.11


  • ACP Commander
  • FreeLink image
  • Debian tarball

Resizing the partitions

If you are not happy with the stock Quad disk layout, you have two options:

  1. Change the layout by unplugging the disk and inserting it in another machine, or
  2. Clever use of symlinks to move data around

In my opinion and for my uses, the default Quad layout is fine

Adding Software

The following software should really be on it afterwards (personal preference, I know). The packages are listed in brackets after the software name)

  • OpenSSH (ssh)
  • NFS (nfs-kernel-server??)
  • iTunes Media Server (mt-daapd)
  • Puppet (this is very much a personal preference, but I manage all my boxes with puppet). Other options are cfengine and chef.