Single Case Home Infrastructure

I need space in my office/lab. While it was kind of fun to break out all the tasks for my home infrastructure to dedicated devices (NAS, Router, Torrent Box, switch, AP), it takes up a lot of space and means managing a lot of cables. It also means that having everything UPS backed is a greater challenge.

The Plan

  • Beef up Argon hardware wise
    • Replace 1gb stick of DDR-2 with 2 x 2gb sticks (for a total for 4gb RAM)
    • Install Atheros-based Mini-PCIe chipset and antennas
  • Migrate all infrastructure services will be migrated argon
    • routing
    • proxy (Do I want to set that up again?)
    • torrent server (definitely want to set this up again)
    • NAS (already on argon)
    • AP (setup and configure hostapd)
  • Rename argon to “router” or “schi” inline with the printer being named printer and the entertainment computer being named tv.

Additional work, down the line:

  • Add hot-swappable tray to argon
  • Get 2 4tb drives and format them with btrfs (setup compression, dedup, and raid 1). Later a 4th drive can be added and the system migrated to raid 5 once raid 5 is stable for btrfs
  • Get a UPS


What is SCHI actually doing?

  • NAT (routing)
  • DNS (caching and local devices)
  • DHCP
  • UPNP (running upnp daemon)
  • WAP (atheros 802.11n card is bridged to the wired gigabit network)
  • RAID1 (Two 4 TB disks running BTRFS in raid1. Snapshots are in use.)
  • NFS (serving up those 4 TB and user home dirs)
  • CIFS (via samba, allowing easier access to storage for windows)
  • dyndns (script updates home.vay8.net to external IP)
  • cron (for periodic tasks)
  • ssh
  • NBD (Network Block Device, like iscsi, but simpler and easier to use)


  • web cache
  • btsync
  • http

Integrating the Switch

I integrated the 8-port, 1 gigabit ethernet switch into the case of my NAS. I salvaged a molex power connector from a dead fan and soldered it to the power contacts on the board.

The only downside is one port is made inaccessible.

The switch in its case.
The switch sans case mounted inside the full size ATX case. There's plenty of room because the motherboard in place is a mini-itx. Its held in place with nuts, bolts, zip ties, erector-set pieces, a bent blank bracket, and sheer force of will. 12V are sourced directly from the PSU.
Close up external view.
The system back in its place of honor, all wired up. The perfectly cut-to-length cables no longer all fit. Cable management will be improved upon once everything has been recased.
The connectivity and power lights are still visible thanks to some missing blank brackets.