A $9 Introduction to the RISC-V Future of Computing

Is RISC-V the future of computing? I sure hope so. So I tracked down one of the cheapest Linux-capable SBCs that supports this architecture, the Milk-V Duo. For a retail price of $9, this little guy offers a RV64 Linux environment complete with busybox, Ethernet, and a wide assortment of IO rivaling some microcontrollers. Today I’m going to steup the board and start learning about RISC-V computing! Fundamentally, the RISC-V architecture is a document which describes the binary machine lanuage of a 32, 64, or 128 bit processor with integer and optional floating point support, but it’s also symbolic of the shift to open computing for the future, and as a computer engineer I’m excited to learn more about it.
read more →

Thin Client Addicts Anonymous - HP T530 Teardown/Review

I have a thin client addiction. You all have seen my 3x Dell Wyse 5060 Hyperconverged Cluster project. And you know that I bought a Dell Wyse 3040. But, I actually bought 3x 3040s, and someone sent me a Wyse 7010, and an HP T620 (yet to be reviewed). And now I bought another. An HP T530. I’d consider this to be an excellent choice for anyone wanting to run Home Assistant, since it has enough power for, an upgradeable M.
read more →

New Toy! HP MicroServer Gen8

Today, I open a new gift to the homelab - an HP MicroServer Gen8. This little chonky cube is full of hard drives and not a whole lot else, making it a perfect test system for ZFS, TrueNAS, Proxmox VE and Proxmox Backup Server, etc. and I’m already planning the videos I want to make with it. So come along as I open it up and see roughly what’s inside, the specs, and use HP iLO (their proprietary IPMI) for the first time.
read more →

A Viewer’s Donation (Part 1) - Dell Wyse 7010

Casually tearing down the Dell Wyse 7010 (Zx0) that was kindly sent in by a viewer named Tom! Thanks Tom for making this happen. Tom also sent an HP thin client, but you guys only get one treat per video, and that one needed Torx bits that I didn’t have handy on the bench. tl;dr the CPU supports AMD-V (not that you really have enough RAM to think about virtualization, but you can expand it with ordinary DDR3 DIMMs), the GPU is kinda awful, and it has a Realtek NIC.
read more →

Buying More Thin Clients for more ‘fun’?

After really enjoying my trio of Dell Wyse 5060 Thin Clients, I bought another cheap one to see how it compares, and hopefully to give advice to the many commenters. The 5060 was a great value for $35 but it’s hard to find at that price normally, while the 3040 is always available for that price, physically much smaller, and also worse on paper. It has a quad-core Intel CPU, 2G of RAM, and was advertised as having an 8G SSD but mine is actually 16G.
read more →