[Gllug] Alix board, batteries, and Linux fsck (was: MiniPC with 2x NIC)

John Edwards john at cornerstonelinux.co.uk
Thu Apr 5 15:45:40 UTC 2012

On Thu, Apr 05, 2012 at 01:52:21PM +0000, S. Ford wrote:
> The LHS recently went with the v120 and an Alix board (all up
> £180ish) see link below for links to detailed hardware
> specifications.
> Both the wrt54g and Alix solutions for a router offer immense power
> and customisation, however I place my vote with the wrt54g because
> of the price and the ease to manage it.

The Alix board are nice - small, silent, cheap, very low power,
capable of running Linux as a firewall with a few extra services.

But one word of warning - most of the board do not have a RTC battery
and so lose the time during a power cut. This means you have to do a
fsck on boot, which is not possible if you are offsite and this is the
main firewall.

Also some distributions (eg Ubuntu 10.04) seem to have a problem with
the serial console during boot. It works at GRUB and after init has
finished, but not at the fsck stage. So you can't complete the fsck
and have to fsck the card or drive on another machine. Annoying.

So for Linux, I would recommend paying an extra few quid for a board
with a battery. These are usually the .D1. range (eg 2D13 or 2D19).

|    John Edwards   Email: john at cornerstonelinux.co.uk    |
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