[Server-devel] Specific server hardware needs.

David Farning dfarning at activitycentral.com
Mon Jun 10 12:59:27 EDT 2013

On Mon, Jun 10, 2013 at 9:38 AM, Tony Anderson <tony_anderson at usa.net>wrote:

> Hi,
> The Trim-slice model H (with room for a 2.5" hard drive) looks like a good
> candidate for a low power school server (e.g. for running from a 12v
> battery). The Trim-slice AC adapter delivers 12v at 1.5 - a good sign.

Agreed. The ability to power these things from a 'car battery' is critical.
I used the term car battery loosely to mean any locally sourced 12v power
source. In my limited experience, the cell phone has been a game changer in
developing nations. Because of the need/desire to recharge cell phones.
Local entrepreneurs have sprung up everywhere to provide the ability to
recharge those phones.

Most of those solutions involve some sort of 12V battery or bank or
batteries plus charging system.

Things like UPSs give me pause because they are not as widely available or
widely under.

 The Trim-slice also has a SD card slot. This could be valuable because
> it would let the device be booted from the SD card and install the XS
> via a USB port (USB drive or hard drive) from a tar ball, for example.
> Currently I do the install in two steps: XS and XC.
> The XS install loads XS (or XSCE).
> The XC install (using the usbmount script) installs the
> content (e.g. Moodle courses, Learn courses, library, internet in a box).
> This is also a way to install packages not included in XS such as Django
> and Mediawiki.
> The first is typically done with a USB drive and the second with an
> external USB hard drive (content currently exceeds 64GB and should grow
> significantly this summer).
> Tony
> Using the SD card could give several benefits:
> SD card supports SSH allowing (finally) for headless (in the field) install
> Install XS to hard drive as image eliminating issues with making bootable
> USB drive
> Install update without repartitioning system and destroying content
> It might also be possible to use the SD card as a 'rescue disk'. Most
> common case is DHCP does
> not init and so no network connection to school server is possible.This
> would at least allow look at logs to see what went wrong.

Thanks for the use scenarios.

> Checking this out is one of my summer projects.
> Tony

David Farning
Activity Central: http://www.activitycentral.com
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