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Comment Experience says you are a noob (Score 4, Insightful) 402

I am some guy who has done stuff like this, including oversaw the construction of a custom condo where I directed certain changes be made to accommodate data networking and a little server room. For my day job, I sysadmin and have directed the construction of a modern mid-size data center (30 racks) and multiple office environments. I oversee lots of structured cabling installations.

I have beat my head against the wall many times, over stupid stuff. So, let me give you some advice.

For example, the fact that you want a 4U rackmount anything in your home is just crazy. Knock it off. You really don't want anything rackmount in your home, though that is the only form factor you are going to find larger switches in.

No professional sysadmin or programmer would put a rackmount server in his home because he knows it is stupid. There is a reason you put computer guts into that form factor and those same reasons do not apply in your home. Get over it.

You are using the logic of "Penguins are Black and White. Some Old TV Shows are Black and White. Therefore, Some Penguins are Old TV Shows" . Just because professionals use rack servers in data centers doesn't mean you are a professional when you put one in your home.

You almost certainly do not want a rackmount chassis for your server. Instead, use a desktop chassis which meets your needs (or whatever is cheapest). The only time you might use a rackmount chassis would be for mounting it directly onto a wall using the ears, but even then, I would never use a 4U height chassis.

Same thing goes for the patch panels. You don't need a rack at all. Ortronics makes a nice little 12-port wall-mounter patch panel which is perfect for home use. I have exactly 24 cat5e runs in my home, so two of them were perfect. FYI Ortronics also makes pretty good jacks and plates too -- get a catalog and call your local Anixter or Graybar for an order.

In my particular case, I have a single do-it-all server with five internal SATA disk drives for primary storage, an old SCSI card which attaches to an external DLT tape drive for backups, and I have an external 5-disk SATA enclosure which is inside of a fire-proof enclosure in case the place burns down. I have a bunch of old APC UPS units in the home which all have network cards in them. I use wireless only for my laptop and phone, where every room has at least two network jacks and as many as eight.

The biggest issues in this server closet are air flow for heat removal, and noise isolation. I live in the southwest where it gets really hot in the summer and the closet where I keep my gear is next to the garage, where it gets warm. I had to cut a vent into the door near the bottom so fresh/cool air could enter the closet, and I have a small fan which blows the old/hot air into the garage. The little 'server closet' has that do-it-all server with the ten disk drives, a cable modem, a 24-port switch, an APC UPS, an APC per-port controlled PDU, and sometimes I keep a second little cheapy server in there for experiments. So I need a little bit of air flow to keep it at a reasonable temperature in there.

However, all of these fans and junk make noise, which is bad. My old switch was the worst offender and I had to ditch it for a different switch. I also found that wall-mounting the switch caused vibrations to go through the wall, so I had to solve that problem by putting it on a small shelf with a layer of foam underneath.

Cat5e cable is probably fine for now. I like Berk-Tek brand riser/plenum cable as an intermediate of price and quality. If you really want to be able to do 10GBASE-T some day, you will have to go with Cat6a, which is crazy expensive. FYI, the current 10GBASE-T spec calls for spans of something like 25 meters with Cat5e, so you might be able to do 10GBASE-T over the Cat5e anyway.

Get over it, stop rack mounting things in your house, and get someone who knows structured cabling in there to help you pick some good cable, jacks, and the patch panels. I already told you about Ortronics and Berk-Tek. A clueful person could go from there.

Comment Re:You have to be kidding (Score 2) 210

First off, I want to say that I own a Nexus One and really like my Android phone. I have no intention of going iPhone. I get to hands-on with iPhones all the time and I still like Android better. I both iPhone and Android to everyone, they are both awesome compared to old stupid phones and Blackdeathberry.

That being said, the truth is that Apple does a much better job at releasing updates and supporting older phones than ANY Android phone manufacture out there.

Obviously, Apple has a much much easier time since they have fewer phone models than you do fingers, where the various Android manufactures have hundreds if not more than a thousand phones to choose from. Those manufactures do a very poor job of releasing updates for their phones.

The last update Google/HTC released for the Nexus One was 2.3.6 (GRK39F) in September of 2011. The phone is not yet three years old now and it's basically dead from a development standpoint. I have to go to community mods and rooting my phone for a better experience.

Meanwhile, Apple releases updates for three years. The 3GS, which came out before the Nexus One, is still fully supported by the latest iOS!


I want everyone to know this because it will force the Android phone makers to shape up. Why buy an Android, which will barely get one year of feature updates, if ANY OS feature updates, when an iPhone will last you three years (assuming you don't break it first).

Comment Re:Who knew (Score 4, Insightful) 120

Because of smartphones and tablets. Or, more specifically, the miniaturization and commercialization of the components. It is the same reason you are seeing things like the Ecobee thermostat. The price of POS equipment is really high, but super-cheap commodity tablets could be used to replace almost all of that. You still need the cash drawer and some other accessories, but IBM has wisely seen that POS is being threatened by software replacements on tablets.

As an example, there is a hot dog stand that I go eat at once or twice a week and the guy takes credit cards via his iPhone and a Square CC reader. He has no POS gear. That's today. In ten years, those POS equipment vendors could be very disrupted by newcomers to that industry.

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