New server with FreeBSD

My “server” had been having troubles recently and since last night it officially gave up on me. I believe the drive has failed. I put the server in quotation marks because it’s not really a server, yes it runs server applications but the hardware is far from server quality. It’s just an old laptop so it was bound to to happen someday. I figured that it would be better to get something better and something that I can upgrade better if needed. Yesterday I ordered a new server at Newegg and it’s arriving today.

I ordered a Fujitsu PRIMERGY TX100 S2 which was on sale for $299 with free shipping. I just checked Newegg and the server was sold out, so I guess I was one of the lucky ones.

Some of the specs:

Type                   Tower
CPU                    Type Intel Core i3-540 3.06GHz 2-Core
Installed Memory       4GB
Hard Drive (Installed) 2 x 250 GB
HDD Interface          SATA 3Gb/s
Media Drives           DVD-RW supermulti

I’ll be stepping a little bit out of my comfort zone and not install Ubuntu on the server but will install FreeBSD instead.
The server will be doing the following tasks:

  • DNS for the local network
  • Email, local POP3 and SMTP
  • Web server
  • NAS
  • Torrent Seedbox

The reason I choose FreeBSD is the fact that the server mostly will be used as a NAS and FreeBSD gives me the option to use ZFS. I’ve heard a lot of good stuff about ZFS so I figured I would try it out for myself.

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  1. Eric

    That’s a good price, I ordered something really similar last year and paid $399. I’m not using mine as a seedbox though, it’s hosting some of my smaller ecommerce sites.

  2. Peter

    I love the machine so far. I love FreeBSD as well, I do need to get used to the different layout, but it’s not to bad as I do have some experience with all sorts of *nix flavors (HP-UX, Solaris, Suse, Redhat, Ubuntu).

    I also love how FreeBSD comes basically empty, you need to install almost everything.

  3. Dev Null

    How are you liking the Tx100 S2 now that you have had it for some time and how is BSD working out?

    • Peter

      I love the machine, it’s very quiet, which is important as it sits right next to me in my home-office.
      FreeBSD is a breeze, since this post I upgraded to the official 9.0 release. The upgrades went smoothly, although I do remember that after an upgrade my mail server wouldn’t start automatically.

      I’m not running FreeBSD as a desktop, and I’m not on the machine daily, I use it daily but I don’t have to log in on a daily basis. It just runs, it reminds me of the old days when I was a Novell Netware administrator. You set it up and it runs.

      I do wish I had written down all the steps I did for installing everything, like the compile settings and such. If I had to setup a server i a home or small office, I would definitely choose FreeBSD.

  4. Dev Null

    Thanks Peter. Are you doing full ZFS? I am looking to do FreeBSD with ZFS on Root on a pair of mirrored microSDHC cards and a 500 GB HDD for the pools and stuff. Glad you like the Fujitsu, hopefully a sale is around the corner and I can snag one for under $300.

    • Peter

      I only have ZFS on my dedicated NAS drives. I read up on ZFS on Root but I didn’t think it was worth the effort, I also needed to setup the machine pretty quickly so I didn’t spend to much time on the whole ordeal.


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