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The Icon Bar: News and features: ARM Linux server for under a hundred quid anyone?
 

ARM Linux server for under a hundred quid anyone?

Posted by Richard Goodwin on 09:03, 21/7/2005 | , ,
 
NSLU2As seen on Slashdot, someone has figured out how to boot ARM Linux on a Linksys NSLU2 Network Attached Storage (NAS) device.

A tricky kernel was written to switch the ARM processor from big-endian (which the device uses natively) to little-endian (which ARM Linux needs), then Linux carries on booting as normal. As well as the device itself, you're going to need a USB drive to attach - which can be anything from a pen drive to a full blown HDD, but try to use USB2 for speed - and a network to attach it to. ARM Linux has 16,000 Debian packages to choose from, the device runs almost silently, it takes very little power, and it's overclockable. What's not to love?

And while this is rip-off Britain (where I'm sitting - YMMV), so you might think the $99/E75 bandied about elsewhere might be out of the question, I have confirmed that the device in question is available from outlets such as eBuyer for under 50 quid ex-VAT and carriage. Don't forget to add storage though!

Links: Installing Debian Sarge on a Linksys NSLU2
 

  ARM Linux server for under a hundred quid anyone?
  rich (09:17 21/7/2005)
  flypig (10:39 21/7/2005)
    rich (11:01 21/7/2005)
      flypig (11:31 21/7/2005)
        tribbles (07:49 22/7/2005)
          rich (08:30 22/7/2005)
            tribbles (09:11 22/7/2005)
 
Richard Goodwin Message #93721, posted by rich at 09:17, 21/7/2005
Rich
Dictator for life
Posts: 6820
(in case anyone's wondering why the title refers to £100 not £60, I'm leaving room for storage - a 1GB USB2 flash drive, or a cheap hard drive and a USB-enabled enclosure, will cost at least £40)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
David Llewellyn-Jones Message #93722, posted by flypig at 10:39, 21/7/2005, in reply to message #93721
Member
Posts: 17
This looks like a neat device and project, but given that it's clocked at 133 Mhz, wouldn't a second hand RPC give better performance with more features, all for a similar sort of price?

I only mention it because when I saw this I was tempted to but one, until I realised I have a RPC gathering dust in the cupboard...

  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #93723, posted by rich at 11:01, 21/7/2005, in reply to message #93722
Rich
Dictator for life
Posts: 6820
It only has 32MB of memory too; so a Risc PC may be better if you already have one spare.

However, if you're buying from scratch, a StrongARM Risc PC with a network card will probably cost more than 60 quid (the network card alone will cost that). Also, this device should be able to access bigger drives - unless you're getting a RISC OS 4 StrongARM Risc PC with network card with more than 32MB RAM for less than 60 quid :)

Oh, and this device is practically silent. YMMV, but my Risc PC isn't, even with a new fan in the PSU.

  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
David Llewellyn-Jones Message #93724, posted by flypig at 11:31, 21/7/2005, in reply to message #93723
Member
Posts: 17
"Oh, and this device is practically silent. YMMV, but my Risc PC isn't, even with a new fan in the PSU."

That's a very good point. Last time I checked my RiscPC sounded like a jumbo jet taking off.

  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Tribbeck Message #93725, posted by tribbles at 07:49, 22/7/2005, in reply to message #93724
tribbles
Captain Helix

Posts: 929
I replaced my 3 VERY LOUD HDs with Segate drives that are designed for use in X-Boxes. They are practically silent - even when you're reading/writing data from them. I've also replaced the PSU fan, so it is very quiet.

Now, I don't really hear it's on. (Although that's part in due to a PC that hasn't been slienced on in the vicinity [like under the RiscPC]) :)

  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #93726, posted by rich at 08:30, 22/7/2005, in reply to message #93725
Rich
Dictator for life
Posts: 6820
Ah, the cheat's guide to slimming - stand near a fatter person ;)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jason Tribbeck Message #93727, posted by tribbles at 09:11, 22/7/2005, in reply to message #93726
tribbles
Captain Helix

Posts: 929
The new machine wasn't even built when I put the new drives in the RPC - certainly the fan is the loudest noise now (and I could put a quieter fan in - no point until the other machine gets moved / silenced).
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 

The Icon Bar: News and features: ARM Linux server for under a hundred quid anyone?