I’ve been running Graylog for nearly a year, as a VM in ESXi, on consumer level hardware, sending ultimately well over a million logs to it (yep, small fry), and have never seen the problems you mentioned. As a somewhat “common” IT guy myself I find Graylog very easy to install and maintain (far easier than a pure ELK stack) and some simple research produces links that provide tips on how to properly configure indexes and shards – maybe took me an hour of dedicated searching. For example, on my single node install, all of my indexes are set to archive after they’ve grown to no more than 30% of the RAM assigned to the VM (roughly 2.4GB), and I set the number of shards to 1, and no replicas. Now, I am experimenting with learning ELK better and my Graylog install is currently turned off, but I can say that Graylog makes things relatively simple.
To be honest, anyone who has a home or small office lab who isn’t running UPS is asking for trouble, no matter what software you’re running – loss of power can be catastrophic for DBs and for some hardware (I have personally witnessed unrecoverable SQL database corruption due to unexpected power events, so this is not a problem singular to Elasticsearch or Graylog). I have multiple UPSes in my home lab to cover all the important machines – NAS, ESXi, main workstation. The recommendations to verify integrity of hardware are perfectly valid.
All that said, if you’re experiencing corruption so frequently, there is something else going on in the system. You never told us the system specs, or provided any log files. Besides, Graylog is free and runs perfectly well on consumer level hardware, as I mentioned. I’m running ESXi on a i7-4790s, with 32GB RAM, on a desktop motherboard, with one SSD for a cache drive and several spinner drives for VM storage and it’s been fine for three years (except for the occasional goof up on my part when configuring stuff, usually due to not reading documentation thoroughly). My Graylog VM has 8GB RAM and 4 cores associated with it. Graylog has, so far, been the best log management solution I’ve seen yet, though it does have its limitations.
At the end of the day you use what works for you.