TinyCore solution is to run the OS entirely in RAM. This frees the SDcard from the barrage of reads/writes by the regular Raspbian system (or most other OSes) thus extending the lifetime of your project/OS/data/happiness.
Is it more reliable? I don't know yet. If it works for a year then I'd say yes it is indeed more reliable. For now I'll just assume it is and hope for the best.
By the way the Raspberry Pi is a terrible NAS. I was already aware of this. Don't build something like this unless you already understand the limitations. For my next NAS project, possibly many years down the road, I'd like to do something with gigabit ethernet and sata.
Here are the steps for installing and configuring your very own piCore NAS.
- Install piCore 6.1 to an sdcard and expand the filesystem.
- Run tce-ab and install ntfs-3g.tcz and samba4.tcz.
- Configure networking.
- Configure samba.