The server will be fairly general purpose, but will be used heavily for local network and some remote storage. Other possible use cases include anything I might need a 24/7 machine for, such as minor file hosting. I don't expect to have more than 5 users at a time, but any such usage will be occupying a good chunk of local network bandwidth.
- Gigabit NIC (or perhaps 2 of them, in case I mess around with routing in the future).
- Prefer Ubuntu Server since that's what I'm most familiar with. Open to other Debian-based options though.
- Need sufficient SATA options.
- Prefer ARM CPU for low power use and price.
- Low RAM (2GB) should suffice.
- I'll probably be throwing on a 2TB HDD on here as well.
I'm primarily looking to run Owncloud on here, but might also try to get SVN, Samba, FTP, and/or other services running. (In that order of importance.) I won't be hosting any public services, but I may want to open up to the web for specific user access such as for myself and friends, although at that point I may just pay up for Google Drive and web hosting anyway and keep my box set to LAN only. Perhaps the best compromise is to only open up the server to the web at specific times, although I've followed the Web Served article series on Arstechnica
, and they seem pretty confident that setting up something secure from the home is a viable option. Still, I'm somewhat paranoid, and the web is a crazy place, so I'm probably better off sticking with the paid services for that anyway.
I may want to hook this up with Crashplan, although at the moment, I'm using GoodSync on Windows for backing up to external HDD's. I prefer my backups to remain fairly accessible, and I keep a few external HDD's and flash drives around to handle quick backups. I'm trying to reorganize my data better in order to account for the varying sizes of files I have. Generally, the larger it is, the less often it needs to change, which is a good thing for me.
As far as usage goes, the main purpose of this server is to have a centralized drive for the home where I can access all my large files at local network speeds wherever I am throughout the house. Instead of using it as a network drive, I'm using Owncloud so that each machine has local copies of the important stuff as an extra layer of backup. The exception to this is on low-capacity systems, with which I can't do that much about. (And is probably where the Samba server share comes in, although that may not play well with Owncloud.)
I think this multi-tier setup should help achieve my goals: work more efficiently, improve access to large files (especially when I'm on a tablet/Surface Pro, or when I'm out of the house), etc.
I have one alternative in mind: WD MyCloud. Saves a lot of time from messing around on Linux, at the expense of not being able to do so much. Still, the tradeoffs might be worth it, considering how much setup is getting done for you. Unfortunately, not having direct access to the files within Windows may be a dealbreaker.