That little ARM machine is a beast in the size of a cigarette pack, featuring a total of eight CPU cores, an ethernet port and most importantly an USB 3.0 port to connect an external hard drive. It also comes with a plastic case, with a small fan inside and a PSU that is strong enough to power external hard drives connected to the USB ports. I ordered the smaller “Lite” version, which has a slightly lower CPU clock rate, but costs a lot less than its bigger brother.
In this post I’ll guide you quickly through the installation process of the ubuntu image on a micro SD-Card, how to make use of all the space on the microSD card and how to secure this little fellow a little after the installation of the image.
I finally got myself a Raspberry Pi and it obviously needs a case. (By the way, it runs the ARM version of Arch Linux, naturally.) Of course I wanted to build one myself, rather than buying one of those boring cases that almost cost more than the device itself. I already had a vague idea about the concept but nothing solid yet. The concept had to be simple (but solid), because besides a Dremel and an electric drill I only had standard tools at hand. (You do not even need a Dremel if you have a small saw instead.)
I’m running a Thin-Client as a home server and sometimes I need access to some files at home. Since those no-ip services didn’t prove that reliable in the past, I decided to implement a DynDNS substitute in PHP.
The concept is quite simple: Let the little server at home call a PHP script somewhere on a “big” Server that has a static IP. The big server then writes the IP to a file, so it can be read from anywhere. There are two scripts that have to reside on the big server: an index.php, which reads and echoes the IP, that was recorded, and another script in a .htaccess protected folder, which is able to write the IP of the home server to a file.
This was an old project of mine. A few years ago I had a huge load of data comming in (~4 TiB) and the amount of storage I needed suddenly more than dubbled. Until then I was using two 1.5 TB HDDs which I mirrored by hand using rsync, because I’m paranoid of loosing data. It was annoying to always copy all data to each disk to have redundancy – and certainly not a smart solution. Now that data wouldn’t fit onto the two disks anyway, so it was time to think of a new solution. I had enough of wasting my time with copying files from one hard drive to another.
A little while ago I finally made the decision that I would like to have a server at home and I was at first fascinated by the SheevaPlug, but many people complained that the powersupply of it would diewithin weeks, so I needed an alternative but I still didn’t want to use a regular computer because of several disadvantages;
It would be to loud
It would consume too much energy
It would be overkill for my purposes
The hardware is relatively expensive
But when I had a look on Ebay, I stumbled upon a Thin-Client, which is essentially a small, low power computer, that is used in companies as something like a next-generation terminal. Since it did only cost 50€ I thought I would just give it a try.