printf(“Hello World\n”);

Although I had been threatening to get the new server up since August, the confirmed death of HAL and fall storms convinced me it’s time to get the new platform running.

Old backup server, with extra fan to keep it cool and operating.

Our backup server, based on an old Dell I acquired from Freecycle, was also showing the effects of age and the dreaded Dell capacitor rot. After yanking out the failing capacitors, we had to use a small desk fan to keep the insides from overheating and shutting down.

Late last week, I finally got the last bits in, FreeBSD installed with Apache, PHP, and MySQL. One function I’ve been wanting is both a backup solution, and access to a ‘cloud server’ I could trust. (Based on their terms and conditions, I don’t trust Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Apple iCloud, or any of the other ‘free’ services.)

New server, with 500 GB main drive and three 1 TB RAID-Z storage filesystem.

With the drop in hard drive cost, I added three 1 TB drives, and recompiled the FreeBSD kernel to use the Oracle ZFS filesystem. With the ZFS filesystem, configured “RAID-Z’ for redundant storage protection, the three 1 TB drives gives us just short of 2 TB storage. Working with the basic Apache stack and the ZFS filesystem, along with some additional PHP modules, I was able to add on Nextcloud to our system for storage, backups, and data access anywhere.

The system is working fine, as you’re reading now from our new server. Still working on adding the ‘apps’ to the cell phone to access our own cloud, but they are mostly working fine as well.