How to make a small and cheap home server: installation, control and connection

Let’s see how to build a small home server with Linux. In this article, we will discuss the installation, control and connection to the server.

The first question is: do I need a home server? Everyone has to answer for themselves. And it can easily be the answer I like everything under my control and I love setting up. However, if you plan to use the server mainly for Internet activities, consider whether it is not more appropriate to use the VPS – Virtual Private Server service.

I can’t give a general recommendation, because the answer can be subjective again. At a minimum, however, everyone should consider the electricity consumption of the home system and the cost of obtaining a public IP address and compare them with the fees of VPS providers.

Electricity consumption is an increasingly important parameter today. It is therefore advisable to look at the hardware for the home server from one point of view first – it must eat as little electricity as possible. Before choosing, we need to find out what we will use the server for. Because the next logical step is to choose and get only the power we really need.

If our demands, especially in the area of ​​disk operations, are not high, the segment of single-board computers can be recommended today. Unfortunately, their availability is currently very limited. A typical representative is the Raspberry Pi. Personally, I solved this problem by using the PI 400 variant seated in the keyboard. This version was perhaps the only one available at the time of writing.

Performance is already enough for many areas of intended use. The limitations here will be primarily the choice of storage device. The micro SD card is not suitable for frequent writing. The solution is a USB drive, but it has other disadvantages. Minimal spatial.

We are trying to consider more power and the possibility to use a classic disk, but we do not want to give up low electricity costs, it is reasonable to choose in the segment of minicomputers. The classic representative of this category has small dimensions and notebook components. They are often sold as semi-finished products, which means that the basic configuration does not include hard disk and memory. The buyer must purchase and install them separately. This allows for better configurability. Typical representatives of this category are, for example:

Intel NUC series computers

or Gigabyte Brix

How to save on consumption if we require the flexibility of a classic computer? It wants modern components: a cost-effective processor with integrated graphics and disks configured to keep them to a minimum, unless you plan to create a RAID array, of course. A continuously running server should not serve as a repository for old disks.

As for the processor, I would choose Celeron or Athlon and the latest series. The more common motherboard is enough, the power requirements will not be high. Memories with a capacity of 4 to 8 GB according to current prices will be enough for running on Linux. I wouldn’t skimp on resources. It may not have much performance, but it should be good quality.

Source: Pctuning – Všechen obsah by

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