Mine is smaller than yours


Dec 15, 2012
[regards to !Alice]

It seems that there are a lot of comments about what is needed in a computer.

And more comments about how big, powerful and expensive a machine needs to be.

Some time back I needed a little machine for a road trip. For $200 at Best Buy got a Netbook. Not sure what it was, confirmed that it could retrieve EMail and was happy. Some checking found a Passmark of about 300. Over time it was put to the test doing full Linux builds, synthesis, VMs, concurrent VMs running different OS stacks, simulation of 100 disks in a complex arrangement, RTL synthesis and a lot more. In short the humble Netbook fundamentally replaced a bunch of machines.

Now, it's not going to run Hanbrake at blazing speed, but will process 100 movies in a day. It stumbles in a few subtle technical areas, but in the end, it works well enough for most proposes. The Video interface supports 2048x1536 resolution and has been mistaken for a keyboard when used with a large screen. And with the mondo battery upgrade will cobble Office stuff from Boston to LA.

There are a bunch of threads looking for hardware to run a video server. One poster advocated that massive and expensive hardware was necessary for a server. A quick test showed that the humble Netbook was more than up to the task.

I'd like to propose that if you want to build a video/file server, look for modest hardware with a good track record.

Consider something like: BIOSTAR NM70I-847 Intel Celeron 847 1.1GHz Mini ITX Motherboard/CPU Combo Free 2x4GB memory, 4 SATA ports, Gbe, with purchase, limited offer for under $100. Add in a couple large drives and a case and the machine should do nicely for under $500.

It is modest and looks pretty good. You will find it's like become available on a regular basis.

QUESTION: Why do people seem to need huge, expensive hardware to do relatively ordinary things?



They don't.

They need huge, expensive hardware to do relatively ordinary things faster.

If your netbook, running Handbrake can process 100 movies in a day, then might not a full-fledged desktop computer (not necessarily with uber-mega components) do the same in half or even one quarter the time; thus freeing the system to do something else?

I know what you're saying and I agree with you. Just because it's older/slower, does not mean it can't do the job. However, some people feel that in order to do the job as quickly as possible, you (near) top of the line equipment.

It's just a matter of priorities. You and I do not care if our systems are tied up for an entire day doing the tasks we've assigned. Others do mind.

-Wolf sends