I've always been fond of the server I have at home. It makes backing up and storing files a lot easier, and stuff like making embedded machines boot from NFS would be quite a lot harder without it.
I've actually been through a few incarnations of my current server, and they never have been housed in an ordinary ATX-case: the first incarnation consisted of not much more than a couple of planks, which were later kept in place by quite a lot of rope. Four years ago, I decided on actually housing the hardware inside something, which at that moment was an old television (Warning: dutch text) The TV actually worked: while the internals were acting as a full-blown server, a laptop LCD and a tv tuner card made the device still functional as a TV.
Nowadays, a lot has changed. For one: I don't live in my student digs anymore. That means no more 100MBit pipe to the Internet anymore, and I have to pay for the electricity I use. I already moved most of the Internet-facing services (like hosting for Spritesmods.com) to a colocated server, so the Duron 1800 in my server ended up not having that much to do; it was just eating electricity and generating heat. Time to swap it out for something a bit more efficient.
Enter the Seagate Dockstar. This is basically a teeny little Linux-server, based around an 1.2GHz ARM-processor, combined with 128M of RAM, GBit Ethernet and a few USB2.0-ports. The best part: It only uses 5W or so. I picked one up for 30 Euros.
But how about the housing for the project? The TV my old server was in would be way too big, but I still liked the idea of putting the server inside something not immediately obvious as a server. After a bit of thought, I decided to give the honours to the Macintosh SE, a small integrated Macintosh computer with which I grew up.
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