|Peter D. Hedderley
Technology Specialist & IT Consultant
"Software is like a lucid dream, limited only by our imagination and ingenuity
- we are the architects, sculptors, rule-makers and rule-breakers."
For a long time, I have been looking for a home server solution in which a low-power PC can be used as a central server within our home.
The first problem, was finding a PC which was reasonably powerful but which did not consume much energy. I The search criteria were:
- low power consumption - mid-range processor - nothing special but nothing overly slow but capable of running either Windows or Linux. - 4x USB 2.0 - 2x HDMI or 1x HDMI and 1x DVI - 1x Serial - 1x Ethernet - 1x WLAN - 1x Modem (not essential but nice)
So the search identified a low-cost solution from CompuLabs - the Utilite Standard. This is a low-cost, low-power ARM-based mini PC which has almost all of the above (except the Modem) and even boasts 2x Ethernet.
So I went ahead and used the supplied SD card with Ubuntu pre-installed.
The following modifications were made to the Ubuntu installation:
- Keyboard, Video and Mouse attached - Hard-Disk Drives attached and auto-mounted by label - SAMBA installed and shares/privileges configured for all core file sources, including multi-media. - MiniDLNA installed to provide a media server. - Backup scripts via CRONTAB - Apache2 Server with PHP installed to provide a web server - PostgreSQL installed to provide database services
The following modifications were made to our other devices:
- SAMBA/CIFS client file browsers/players installed - DLNA clients installed - WWW server bookmarked
The server runs 24×7 and consumes (normally) around 8 Watts which meets my exact requirements.