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Low power, silent home linux server

server home linux

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#1 SuperKid

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 16:35

I am looking for an ultra quiet home server which will run Debian. I am fed up of using xampp on my mac to test my PHP web applications, xampp keeps erroring at me and I can't get it configured to how I want, seen as I am working from 2 computers a laptop and iMac i thought why not get a cheap linux server, but I can't find any or know any ultra quiet PC's to use.

Something compact and small will do, any recommendations? (as small as iMac Mini would be great)


#2 Mindovermaster

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 16:45

Get an Intel Atom ITX board, case (most come with PSU), RAM, just use a pen drive to load up Debian, and be on your way.

#3 Max Norris

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 16:46

Don't usually go for low-power myself when I build servers (quite the opposite), but what about something along the lines of a Zotac ZBox? They're pretty small and energy efficient. Just as an example...
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16856173028

Note that this particular one is barebones and needs memory and storage yet, there are models ready to go out of the box as well. Fairly small too, 7.4" x 7.4" x 1.73".
Posted Image

#4 +BudMan

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 16:50

I run a N40L with esxi on it (free) and then run multiple windows/linux/bsd VMs on that - one is even my router. One is my NAS, then test and play VMs. There is even a hack out there to be able to run OSX stuff on esxi

Its very quiet! Small little box 10.5" x 8.3" x 10.2"

n40l.jpg

It only uses about 55w (have it plugged into my killawatt meter), and I have 4 drives in it. Bumped the ram to 8GB, which from reading can go to 16GB even though says 8GB max. And added a 2nd nic (so could use as my router), Sure you could run whatever linux/bsd/windows OS you wanted on it baremetal. But I love the VM aspect of it - My nas VM has raw access to the disks, and I get 70-90MBps transfer rates to and from it.

I would highly recommend it - and cheap. Currently on newegg for $319 (2gb 250GB hdd)

Its very very quiet!! It sits about 3 feet from my chair in my computer room, and never even notice it on other than the lights on the front ;)

#5 c.grz

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 17:00

Budman,

Where are you reading that the N40L can do 16GB? If so; I think I may have found my Christmas gift to myself!! :-)


Edit:

Nevermind, I found it. Looks like I know what I want Santa to bring me!!

#6 Mindovermaster

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 17:04

That Zotac reminds me of the ASUS EeeBox. http://www.newegg.co...0142&Tpk=eeebox

Could just wipe the drive of 7 and install Debian.

#7 Grayski

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 17:11

Looks like I know what I want Santa to bring me!!


Snap, I think I've just made a decision for myself

#8 hamslammer

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 17:20

If you look down that product page on NewEgg you will find this combo purchase for $270!

http://www.newegg.co...t=Combo.1146636

#9 SirEvan

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 17:27

My vote is for the atom based system, a via based system, or one of the zotac's. Zotac's make great HTPCs, and depending on what you put into them, they only draw around 20-30 watts. Assuming you leave it running 24x7, and you pay 13 cents for a kilowatt hour, that would be 0.48 - 0.72 KWh/day, or around 6.2 - 9.3 cents per day, or $22.63 - 33.94/ year.

If you need even less power, look at a raspberry pi? They're around 5-10 watts. I build a VIA based firewall one time, it only used 15-20 watts with a 5400 RPM drive in it, running smoothwall.

#10 OP SuperKid

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 19:00

I run a N40L with esxi on it (free) and then run multiple windows/linux/bsd VMs on that - one is even my router. One is my NAS, then test and play VMs. There is even a hack out there to be able to run OSX stuff on esxi

Its very quiet! Small little box 10.5" x 8.3" x 10.2"

It only uses about 55w (have it plugged into my killawatt meter), and I have 4 drives in it. Bumped the ram to 8GB, which from reading can go to 16GB even though says 8GB max. And added a 2nd nic (so could use as my router), Sure you could run whatever linux/bsd/windows OS you wanted on it baremetal. But I love the VM aspect of it - My nas VM has raw access to the disks, and I get 70-90MBps transfer rates to and from it.

I would highly recommend it - and cheap. Currently on newegg for $319 (2gb 250GB hdd)

Its very very quiet!! It sits about 3 feet from my chair in my computer room, and never even notice it on other than the lights on the front ;)


That looks a really good choice actually, I know how to use ESXi so I could consider that, actually makes reinstalling easier too and with snapshots etc be awesome. Great options thanks guys and the Zotac Zbox and Asus eebox was something i was looking for.

Thanks!

#11 +BudMan

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Posted 30 November 2012 - 19:13

Yeah the ability to take snapshots is great for doing any sort of development work. Can always roll back if when you upgrade something if something goes wrong. I always take a snapshot before I update my pfsense since running latest snaps and now and then something is not quite right.

And vms just rock for testing and development work since you can have different ones setup for different things.

One of the best purchases made in quite some time - the box just rocks and has been solid. I can not recommend it enough - I would love to pick up another one to be honest. I could see having a few of these around to be honest!

There is some modded firmware for them as well that adds some features. They have 6 sata ports, and 7 usb. And esata in the back. they only come with 4 bays - but the place where the optical goes can do 2x 3.5HDD - or someone put in 4x2.5" drives in that location. Not sure I would go that route - not very cost effective - but the more options you have the better!