[TUHS] UNIX of choice these days?

Jon Steinhart jon at fourwinds.com
Thu Sep 21 03:09:25 AEST 2017

Ian Zimmerman writes:
> On 2017-09-20 08:42, Jon Steinhart wrote:
> > The fourth machine lives up at my ski cabin and has 20TiB of disk;  I have a
> > remote control system make from a Raspberry PI that I can use to control the
> > power on that machine so that I can rsync to it.  It's my main offsite backup
> > machine.
> This is intriguing; how do you remote-control to the ski cabin?
> Satellite or something?

Built a small daughter board with a few solid-state relays that plugs in
to a Raspberry Pi.  It does a few things for me...

I don't like to keep the ski cabin machine powered up when not in use.
Especially you Californians will be pissed at this but the cost of electricity
at the ski cabin is something like 8x what I pay at home.  Of course, that's
probably on par with what you pay; at home I'm on a public utility district
that buys directly from BPA.  Also, I'm just one of those weird environmental
types who turns off the lights when I leave a room so I don't want to be
burning a power 24x7 for no reason.

Also, while that machine is on a UPS, power up there is pretty flakey when
the storms rage.  So I couldn't count on the machine staying on.

The Pi pings a dynamic DNS server so that I can find the machine.  It also
lets me know when the internet connection up their dies so that I can call
CenturyLink.  Unsurprisingly, their customer service number is identical to
that of Dell and Verizon:  the Oregon Department of Justice.

One of the solid-state relays on the Pi is connected to the power switch on
the bigger computer so that I can power it up from remote.  Another is on
the rest switch in case things go really weird and I can't power things down.
That has never happened but it's just in case.

The last relay is connected to the thermostat.  That way, if I decide to go
skiing on short notice I can turn the heat on while I'm driving up and it'll
be warm when I get there.

Oh, don't need satellite.  The ski cabin has DSL so I get 10x the service that
I get at home for .1x the price.


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