We’re nearing the end of 2021 and it’s time to refresh the homelab again. I recently moved two of the three custom built Supermicro servers previously in the home network cabinet over to the Colo Cluster, creating a need to replace the empty rack Us with something that could handle home services. Notice I used the word need there, although it’s really just a euphemism for want as I have plenty of servers that could handle this in the Data Center.

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I recently switched the majority of my self-hosted services over to Proxmox running on a custom built 1U supermicro server. It’s been working so well I decided to build a second one, and setup a two node HA cluster to take advantage of live migration among other features. Proxmox uses corosync to track cluster status, but the trick is it requires a third node (qdevice) to provide quorum and act as a tie breaker.

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New co-lo box

It has been about six years since I last upgraded my co-lo box that hosts a myriad of services and websites for opensource, business, friends, and personal hobbies. Now I have a new machine in place that should last at least another six years. A tremendous amount of thanks goes out to Andrew at NETPLEX for dealing with the inevitable problems that come up when you ship a machine nearly 1000 miles.

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Hybrid storage pools are the new coolest thing in ZFS land and are being pushed commercially with the recent release of Sun’s 7000 series open storage. For various reasons, Sun has only added a supported SSD option to the X4540 Thor systems. This unfortunately doesn’t help those of us wanting to extend our X4500 Thumper investments and get in on the SSD performance action. I’m fairly certain you could buy Sun’s Thor solution and use it in your Thumper, but I for one wasn’t impressed with the price.

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My ZFS media server

Every self-respecting geek has a home media server to store their CD and DVD rips, downloaded TV shows, photos, etc. and I’m no exception. I’ve always found it interesting to see what others put together to fill this void, so I’m returning the favor by showing off my current setup: The full components list includes: Chenbro RM31212B 3U Rackmount Chassis including a 460W Zippy PSU Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.

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Phillip Steinbachs


Principal Engineer

Sandpoint, ID USA