Home server - please consult

Started by berto, Jul 30, 2022, 12:31 AM

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bertoTopic starter

Hello friends
Help solve a difficult issue
I've never dealt with servers in my life, I've only seen pictures
However, the number of sites, both own and supported, is already pushing for the idea of placing my own server directly at home.
Let's assume that I need to place 10-20 average resources on a machine with 10-200 hosts per day, and say one single resource with 1000-2000 hosts per day.
By nature, these are business card websites of construction companies, law firms, etc., and let's say a file hosting service or a big forum
In terms of money in my pocket, there are $1000

Advise on multiple issues at once

    Can I satisfy my needs by this money?
    If not, what money can I expect
    What the server characteristics can be considered as a priority?
    If there are several specific suitable examples, I would be grateful for the links.
    Maybe a few important tips from people who have experience placing a server side by side
    When placing one, I will probably have to change the provider, what connection speed can be considered satisfactory?


This is a bad idea. I won't even explain why. It's easier to rent a VPS or a dedicated server.

And the load ... Only empirically. A crookedly written script with 3 daily visitors can fill up the server.


The home server can be used for storing files, backups, managing smart appliances, or as a media web server. Today we will talk about the features of such servers, their types and key characteristics.

Creating a home server: theory and basics
Your own home server is indispensable in a variety of everyday tasks. It can be used as a file storage, you can organize video surveillance on your own web server if you live in a private house, and also use it for backup. Let's talk in more detail about the purpose of such servers and analyze the main characteristics of the machine.

Why do I need a home server
The task of any home server in one way or another is to store files and data that you can access from any device on the local network. The simplest and most understandable scenario is a regular network storage: you store all movies, music, distributions and other data on the server and use them from any home computer, tablet or laptop.

Another scenario is the creation of a media server: that means that, for example, movies and music are stored on web server, which can be played on a Smart TV or other suitable device inside the network at any time. Here the content is broadcast using HTTP or DLNA protocols.

The home server can also be used to distribute or download torrents.
This is a specific scenario that may nevertheless be relevant to you. As a rule, most distributions already have a pre-installed torrent client, but that does not always happen, and then you will need to install it manually (Transmission application or similar).

If, for example, you live in a private house and want to ensure its maximum security, you can organize video surveillance with a home server. Data from IP cameras can be stored on web server - it is only important that it has sufficient storage and the required performance. Of course, there are special computers-DVRs, but they are needed for complex systems, so they are expensive. For a couple of cameras, your server will be preferable and cheaper.

The server can also be used to back up data from your devices. It is important here that the storage volumes are calculated with a margin, and information from all your home devices is placed on the disks.

What characteristics are important
If we are talking about the characteristics of web server, we can distinguish two critical ones: storage capacity and noise level. Everything is clear with the storage: there is never too much of it, the volume of disks depends on how much content, files, documents and data in general you can place there. The more space you have, the more backups you can store there and the higher the quality of movies and music you will allow yourself.

The second is noise. A server is not a computer that you turn on out of necessity. A web server is a device that works around the clock and, as a rule, is located in a residential building.
Therefore, the comfort of your life directly depends on the noise that the car makes. The ideal solution would be a server with passive, not fan-cooled, and with a strong and massive case that will not transmit vibrations from the operation of hard drives. If it is impossible to switch to passive cooling, it makes sense to upgrade the fans by installing modern quiet and productive models.

Among the less important characteristics, we will name energy consumption: today there are practically no computers that can seriously affect the electricity bill at the end of the month. The appetites of modern machines are modest, so a 300W power supply will be quite enough.

What are home servers like
Now a few words about what home web servers are. First, you can purchase an ARM-based microcomputer. With clear advantages (low price, compactness, low power consumption), there are also significant disadvantages: such computers usually have low performance, and the prevalence of ARM architecture does not yet allow us to consider that solution convenient.

Nevertheless, the server on such a single-board computer can be used to control smart electronics. Actually, many people do this, closing the ecosystem of a smart home inside the house itself, and not relying on cloud technologies of manufacturers. This is understandable, so the smart home will not turn into a puff when the Internet disappears or a failure on the cloud web  server, and its speed will noticeably increase. After all, now he will not have to travel between your home and, for example, China or the USA.

The second option is a nettop (mini-PC). These are small x86 devices that can be purchased both fully assembled and in the form of a platform — in the second case, you will need to choose and purchase storage and RAM yourself. Among the advantages, it is worth mentioning accessibility in different budgets (from $1k to $2k ) and quiet work. The main disadvantage here is the connector for only one disk (2.5" format).

However, that is only a conditional minus. If silence and compactness are important to you, a mini-PC can really be an ideal choice as a home server of any type. As for the restriction on the ability to install only one internal drive, it can be easily circumvented by using external hard drives. Fortunately, such mini-PCs usually have an abundance of high-speed USB connectors.

NAS servers rush to the other extreme: these devices are concentrated around the storage (you can install several disks depending on your needs), but it is impossible to upgrade the other characteristics of the machine. If you are not satisfied with the processor or the amount of memory in the finished solution, you will not be able to do anything about it. NAS machines are optimally suited as a simple storage — with other scenarios, difficulties may arise.

A universal option is the purchase (or self—assembly) of a ready-made mini-server. Here it is worth paying attention to the brand: worthy models are made by Altos (a subsidiary of Acer), HP and Dell. From specific recommendations, the T110 F5 model from Altos is popular today: it has 4 slots for hard drives, the Intel Xeon E—series line acts as processors here.
The supported amount of RAM is up to 128 GB, which is enough for most home use cases. But try to choose models from new lines: the newer the device, the lower the noise level in it, as practice shows.

The most affordable and cost—effective way out is to build web server with your own hands. We often update our computers, and at home each person will probably have a lot of idle components. They can be used to build a server by purchasing the missing components in stores or by buying from "hand".

Of course, such a server is unlikely to show wonders of performance. But it is quite suitable for the role of a media web  server, a device for storing data, backups and other household needs. However, its size will be comparable to a regular desktop PC, and it will make no less noise. Therefore, it is best to install such a server in non-residential premises: kitchen, toilet or corridor.

We talked about the purposes of the home web server, their types and main characteristics. Think carefully and plan how you will use the server. Today, in conditions of a shortage of semiconductors, computer prices are breaking records — and the more accurately you understand which web server you need, the less you will overpay for features and characteristics that you will not need.