As a recovering tech addict, I still have a fair amount of elaborate setups around the house. Especially given that I don't upgrade until I have to for something (and I don't really play video games much, so that cuts down on the upgrading a lot!). We use Mac and Windows "front-ends" with a FreeBSD server as the back-end. This way, if something bad happens to one of the laptops or the "big iron" PC, it is just a matter of reinstalling the OS and applications and configuring. Very little or no data should be lost, as that is all stored on the Unix server (which has RAID-1 mirroring, plus removable snapshot drives that cycle through the fire safe).
The systems I currently run at home:
- arachne (homebrew RAID server, P4(631)/3GHz [EM64T, G965 chipset]: FreeBSD/amd64) — finally had to build a replacement for my trusty old home server, as it had maxed out on disks and started to have erratic hardware issues (it was 7 years old). My current trusty file and sandbox server, it is the master copy for all the websites I manage. RAID-1 plus removable (USB) snapshot drives gives me better backup and recovery than many small businesses (and maybe even some large ones!)
- acorn (homebrew Intel i7-920 2.66GHz Quad-Core; Win7 Ultimate [64-bit]) — video editing/conversion, desktop publishing and graphic design, etc. Liked the massive performance improvements with my new RAID server so much, I upgraded my increasingly flaky primary box a month later. A friend had a capture card lying around, too, so I can finally digitize my old VHS tapes (prom, college graduation, home movies, etc. — deal was I digitize some of his, such as the Jeep ads he is in). Have since upgraded the CPU and mobo from P4 to i7 via Craigslist.
- lachesis2 (ThinkPad T61p Core2Duo T7300 2GHz, 8GB RAM: Windows 7 Ultimate [64-bit]) — still running great, despite its encounters through the years with beer, yogurt, walls, driveways, etc. Has traveled through about a dozen countries.
- MacBook Air — my wife's laptop, bought to replace her trusty old G4 PowerBook that finally bit the dust.
still running great, despite its encounters through the years with beer,
yogurt, walls, driveways, etc.
Just wish I could find a way for it to support
- dyson (Dell Precision M4300, Core2Duo; Win7 Ultimate [64-bit], XBMC): our living room A/V system, running off our server or streaming. Named in honor of Freeman Dyson, whom I have had dinner with.
- mb_data (Dell Inspiron 1150, Celeron 2.6GHz; WinXP Pro SP3): legacy system solely to run old programs for diagrams and workshop data for our cars. Acquired free from mechanic, since he couldn't get it working anymore.
IRIX —well, once I find replacement OS install tapes... anyone have a copy of IRIX 4.0.5F lying around?)