Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Greener Home Server

I have an old Mac Mini G4 that I've been using as my always-on home server, but it draws a fair amount of power for a system that's idle most of the time (32 watts, up to 85 watts when busy) , so I decided to look into running an ARM system (they typically use less than 5 watts).

After considering the SheevaPlug, the GuruPlug, the BeagleBoard, the PandaBoard, and even the pink PogoPlug, I decided to order a PandaBoard since it has a dual-core OMAP4 at 1 GHz with 1 GiB of RAM.  It was on backorder for a few days, but it finally arrived!

Next step: get Fedora up and running on it with the help of


  1. What's the plan for storage? These things almost never have SATA on them. :(

  2. You're right, the Pandaboard does not have a SATA port. It's limited to an SD card and USB storage. My server needs are more terminal oriented (via ssh), though, and the Pandaboard is great for that.

    For a low power media server, I might look at an Atom based system instead, or maybe the new DreamPlug which has eSATA (but only half the RAM of the Pandaboard).