What (re)started this whole thing? I have been tinkering with my Raspberry Pi’s again recently, more on that later, and started running into some processing power limitations. I was lucky enough to have an Amazon gift card burning a hole in my pocket so instead of upgrading to the latest and greatest Pi, I decided to try out one of the cheapo atom based mini pcs out there.
My criteria for the search was:
- 4GB RAM
- expandable storage
- Windows 10 Pro
The machine I landed on was the ACEPC T11 for somewhere in the $140 range after tax (it was on sale at the time). There is a 2.5” drive bay for additional storage. My original plan was to install a 1 TB SSD and run the OS from this new location. If you’re reading this and that is your plan , heads up...this does not work that well. The way the manufacturer connected this drive to the board is through a USB interface which Windows does not appreciate. After quite a bit of instability, I reverted back to running the OS on the 64GB eMMC drive and using the SSD as storage.
Full disclosure, right now this site is currently a COVID19 past time and I'm really not all that worried about uptime or scalability. For those reasons, and the fact that I don't want to spend any money on hosting, I chose to use a little mini-pc I found online as my “server”.
As a way to see how this little box is surviving, I created a few performance metric images (CPU, FreeMem, Uptime) that will let me check the pulse of the server. (Maybe I'll write a post about how to do this soon)