I finished putting together my latest gadget this afternoon – a mini home server made from a Linksys NSLU-2 NAS device and a portable USB harddrive.
Why did I want it?
Do I really need an excuse?
Now I have a full, albeit small, Linux server at home, I’m sure I can think of some fun things to do with it. But as I wrote last week, the catalyst that pushed me to doing this now was wanting something to collect data from my new CurrentCost electricity meter.
It needed to be cheap, small, and low-powered – no point having a server running all the time to monitor my home’s electricity usage if it makes a significant dent in my electricity usage all by itself!
What did I buy?
A NSLU-2 – a network storage link for USB 2.0 disk drives, by Linksys. This is a small NAS device that lets you make a USB harddrive available on a network. The firmware in it comes with enough software to create a network share for any portable USB harddrives or USB flash memory key that you plug in.
It’s a neat little gadget, but what makes it special is that it is very easy to flash the firmware and replace it with a full Linux distro. Plug in your USB harddrive, and you have a Linux server with as much space as you might want.
Oh – and for some reason, people call them “slugs”.