The power of Commodity Hardware

In this new era of Big Data, the term commodity hardware became very common, but it’s up to you to define how to use it. The term commodity hardware in general mean Computer hardware that is affordable and easy to obtain. Typically it is a low-performance system that is PC-compatible and is capable of running Microsoft Windows, Linux, or others operating systems without requiring any special devices or equipment.

Why do we need datacenters with special configurations to be able to run servers 24/7 : ACs, UPS, raised floors, networking, security…etc. While we used to have a desktop computer in every office. Imagine a company having 30 desktop computers having an i7 8cores 4GB ram 500GB hard drives each, that’s the equivalent of a 240 Core super computer with 120GB ram, and 15 TB or storage ! But obviously we don’t use them as servers, because these PCs fail frequently and they are not designed to run 24/7. Read more

Banana Pi experiments with Debian Wheezy

I received this week a Banana Pi board, so first thing I did before looking further is to try available Linux images. Everything looks great with some exceptions, and since I already have an experiment ready to use that I had previously build for MK802, I managed to get it working on the BPi.

MK802 is an A10 based device, while the BPi is an A20 based device. The two devices have different microcontrollers but share almost the same tool and techniques. That’s why converting my personal cloud image to BPi was very easy and here is how I did it : Read more

Proof of concept : A $30 dollars DIY Personal Cloud Server

Personal cloud devices are available today in the market for different prices depending on the storage size, let’s say around $200 the 4TB. But it happens that I have already a storage device that I am happy with, and a mini PC in a stick (MK802) that came with Android 4.0 pre-installed.

You can find the Android mini PC in eBay for less than $30, and we will need just a micro SD card to install the operation system, so we can replace the Android with an embedded linux distribution. Finally I’ll transform it into a personal cloud server to sync my files from PC/Mac/Android …etc. Read more

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