Big computer features in a small package

I’ve been experimenting with some Mini-ITX systems.

This is a full PC running Linux (or FreeBSD if you prefer), with stereo audio, 10/100 ethernet, 4 USB ports, 2 firewire ports, 2 UltraDMA IDE 66/100/133 interfaces, and it even has a PC-Card slot, and a Compact-flash slot. It has TV-out and integrated MPEG capabiltites, but this isn’t something I’m using. There is a hard drive, DVD drive, and even a PCI card in that little box. It is a tight fit, believe me. Best of all, it runs stock modern Linux distribtions. The pictured one is running Suse 9.0 installed right off the DVD. It doesn’t need any special tweaks or custom Linux distributions.

This is the EPIA M10000-II motherboard. It is not fanless, but it has more horsepower and features than the fanless units. It’s still quieter and uses less power than a full-size PC. Eventually one of these will go in my ‘network equipment’ closet (cupboard) in a headless server role.

UPDATE: Wiki page on Mini-ITX and Linux/FreeBSD:

1 comment for “Big computer features in a small package

  1. Good to see the Digium TDM4xxp card in there! I’ve been working on a mini-ITX solution using the Travla cases. was considering the C137 until I found out that both cards share the same IRQ. I think somebody really needs to come up with a lower price mini-ITX chassis. Travla/Casetronic want too much ($110+) for these to make effective Asterisk appliances.

    P.S. – David, if you get a chance, give me a shout. (We met at VON right after your speech.) I’m one of the AstriCon guys — I would love to see if you have time to show up in Atlanta this fall and deliver a keynote.



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