Consolidating RPi's to one low power machine, but witch one?

Discussion in 'Virtualized Computing' started by rma, Mar 20, 2019.

  1. rma

    rma Limp Gawd

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    Hi All,

    As the years have past i been using RPi's for different small tasks, and they are doing great, but some applications like Unifi requires more and more ram and faster CPU's, therefor i was considering using an low power Intel NUC or Gigabyte Brix to consolidate all the RPi into.

    currently i would need to run the following different VM's (All Linux based).

    Unifi Controller
    Mediawiki (this is just used for my internal documentation regarding different projects and network setup)
    OpenVPN (no need for any high speeds here)
    DNS server (acting as secondary DNS server)
    Nagios Server (monitoring 8 host maximum)
    and properly an simple Jump server for remote access (SSH).

    i would like to run these machines as independent machines (like my RPi's) i was considering Proxmox/EXSI for the task, the most important thing here is keeping the power as low as possible, and consolidate all machines to one box.

    i don't need more than one network interface, this the small mico PC's do the job.

    Anybody have any recommendations for this?.

    I been looking at the Intel NUC7PJYH.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2019
  2. BlueLineSwinger

    BlueLineSwinger Gawd

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    A current NUC or equivalent would probably be fine, though they can be a bit costly, a mITX setup might be a bit cheaper in total. I'd say 4 cores/8 threads would be the minimum.

    Proxmox would work well, and allow you to reduce resource requirements by running most things in LXC containers instead of full VM guests.

    For reference/comparison, my home Proxmox box contains a Xeon E3-1230v3 and 32 GB RAM. I'm running the following, and I have room for plenty more:
    • LXC
      • Pi-Hole
      • ISC-DHCP
      • Squeezebox
      • Unifi controller
      • WWW server
      • PXE Boot server
    • VMs
      • FreeIPA (CentOS 7)
      • Apt-Cacher NG (Ubuntu LTS)
      • generic desktop (Ubuntu LTS)
     
  3. PigLover

    PigLover [H]ard|Gawd

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    Look on eBay for used HP Elitedesk 800 G2 mini PCs. They are really small and quiet. Depending on how much you want to spend you can get anything from a low end i3 to an i7-6700t. They h ave space for a 2.5” drive and an NVMe m.2 slot.

    There are good ones with i5-6600t and 16gb ram listed now for $259. Probably more than you wanted to spend if replacing Raspberry’s, but you will not regret it.

    BTW, wrt @BlueLineSwinger’s suggestion - these things run Proxmox really well...
     
  4. acascianelli

    acascianelli [H]ardness Supreme

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    I was running the UniFi software on an old Raspberry Pi 2, I never had any problems with performance. I was ONLY managing a single access point thought, I imagine if you have it handling multiple Ubiquity units especially a firewall it could be a problem.

    I say "was" because the SD card in the system actually failed completely recently. :(
     
  5. rma

    rma Limp Gawd

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    Thanks for the input, as all machines will be running very light do you think it would be possible to use the intel NUC NUC7PJYH, it would really fit perfectly in with regards to the low power usage.
     
  6. rma

    rma Limp Gawd

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    Never had an SD card fail, i have good experience with cards from SanDisk.
     
  7. rma

    rma Limp Gawd

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    i think the HP Elitedesk 800 G2 mini would be over the normal power budget i would like to hit.
    I would really like to use more or less the same power as the RPi's (when the machine Idles) thus idle power should be around 5-6watts that would be around the same wattage as the, intel J5005 CPU.
     
  8. PigLover

    PigLover [H]ard|Gawd

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    In that case - and since you are familiar with working with raw SBCs like the Raspberry - give the Odroid-H2 a close look. J4015 based (very slight downclock from the J5005 and a few less graphics cores, but otherwise identical).

    Unfortunately they are out of stock until May or so due to Intel parts shortages - but then again so are pretty much all J4105/J5005 systems unless you buy at reseller markups.
     
    rma likes this.
  9. rma

    rma Limp Gawd

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    Thanks, i have access to J5005 NUC systems and i even think that i can get hold of an J4105 based system to, my normal EXSI environment consist of 4 older DL380G6 and G7 systems, they do the job when i do testing, but the kWH prices in Denmark are around 33cent/kWH thus leaving them on is not an solution for my normal everyday setup.
     
  10. acascianelli

    acascianelli [H]ardness Supreme

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    This was my first one to fail. It was a generic Micro SD card from Micro Center. My other Pi's are running either Sandisk or Kingston cards.
     
  11. defaultluser

    defaultluser I B Smart

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    If you want to stick with Arm, there's always the Jetson Nano. It's $100 for quad-core A57s at 1.4 GHz, and 4gb ram. Includes USB 3 ports, if you need tit to do any NAS duties, or store websites onboard.

    It's about 2-3x the performance of the current Pi3, and doesn't have any of the I/O limitations it suffers from.

    That's the beefiest system you can buy for that price. Going Nuc Atom is pretty limiting, by-comparison.