Thursday, July 10, 2008

A Long VOSS Hiatus - I'm Back

I pulled the plug on the blog for awhile. I love technology but between tech at work and then more tech at home I was a little burned out. In fact I used the occasion to simplify my life and get rid of all my rigs except 5 of them. The normal person at this point is saying why the hell do you need five computers and is that really simplifying? For those reading this blog I fully expect you to understand.

So what did I do with the other 5+ rigs? I fixed them them up, loaded up linux (Puppy Linux 4 - Dingo to be specific), put a I want you linux sticker on the case and pushed them out to the local Goodwill where I hope they find happy new owners.

I have been fighting the urge to bring any new toys homes. Of course now that I have paired down my toy collection all these great Craigslist opportunities keep coming up........

I haven't been a total tech prude at home. I have been playing around with Madriva and I must say I am pretty impressed with it. I have never been a big fan of RPM based distros but the Spring 2008 version is very polished, has good hardware detection and a some well thought out software selections which have made me take a second look.

I also did a few Debian net installs and got comfortable with the process of installing various packages and figuring out which ones had the least amount of bloat.

After spending sometime mulling over my previous posts I made some decisions about which direction I want to go. I decided big monolithic solutions are not what I am after. They require lots of resources and install lots of features I do not have a need for nor do I want them cluttering up my system(s).

Power consumption and the physical size of the solution are still very important to me. Over the last few months a few pieces of hardware have caught my eye. The first one is the Chenbro ES34069 Mini-ITX server case. It looks great and has some very nice features:

ES34069 Specifications
(w x h x d)
260 mm x 140 mm x 260 mm
10.24" x 5.51" x 10.24"
Hard Drive Bay 4 x 3.5" SATA HDD (hot-swappable)
1 x 2.5" notebook HDD (internal)
Optical Drive Bay Slimline CD/DVD drive
Expansion Slot N/A
Front Access 2 x USB 2.0
SD/Mini-SD/MMC/MS card reader
Power button
Reset button
Cooling System 2 x 70 mm fans (rear)
1 x 60 mm fan (front: optional)
Power Supply Built-in 180W DC board
External AC adapter (brick)
Input AC 100 ~ 240V
Output DC 19V @ 9.5A

The second item of interest is the release of numerous low power components. I am particularly interested in the dual core version of the Intel Atom CPU that should be released sometime next month based on a recent article posted at DigiTimes. Initial reports on the single core version of the Atom processor have been mix at best but it will be interesting to see what upgrades occur over the next month or two.

I have also been looking at small fast web servers and I am interested in evaluating Cherokee and Abyss.

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