Sustainability Hacks: Thin client server

It’s not environmentally friendly, but most of us run a small home server 24 hours a day. A small server is a useful tool to have that unfortunately wastes a lot of energy. [kekszumquadrat]‘s thin client home server is actually a passable LAMP box that doesn’t draw a ton of power.

[kekszumquadrat] started looking at the SheevaPlug when beginning his quest but was a little concerned about the power supply failing. Looking for alternatives, he ran across a lot of cheap thin clients on eBay. The price was right and everything runs Linux, so a few days later he had an HP t5710 thin client on his doorstep.

This little computer came a copy of an embedded version of XP on a flash drive connected to the IDE port. Ditching that “operating system”, [kekszumquadrat] connected a USB hard drive and installed Arch Linux. After a few updates and package installations, he had a useful machine connected to the Internet.

Compared to the 7 Watts the SheevaPlug draws, the 15 W thin client is an energy hog. Compared to our improvised servers, [kekszumquadrat] is doing a remarkable job. Recycling old hardware never hurt anyone, either.