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Old 14th April 2009
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Default Thin Client cases and Mini ITX boards

I would like to build two systems specifically as high quality "anti-virus gateways" for my home network and my office network using OpenBSD of course. Even though, I run only OpenBSD as desktop OS I want to relax
little bit firewall rules on Desktops. I would like to be able to print, scan, and do
other stuff on the local network. Thus, I really want robust firewall/router/squid/snort solution.

I found a couple really nice and inexpensive (under $50) Intel MiniITX motherboards with pre-installed Atom processor but I am stump with the price of MiniITX cases so I have a different idea.

I saw really nice inexpensive Thin Clients on Ebay. I was wondering if anybody has any experience in using them for MiniITX build. In particular there are couple HP thin clients that are under
$30, look beautiful, and big enough to swallow even a HDD. I will be probably using USB though.

I am open for any kind of creative ideas.

P.S. The other option is just to get two dirt cheap old Netra SUN servers for about $50 from Ebay and go from there.

Last edited by Oko; 15th April 2009 at 12:34 AM.
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Old 14th April 2009
DrJ DrJ is offline
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You might also consider something like a Sun Ultra 5. They are plenty fast enough to serve between a local network and the internet, and they have PCI slots so that you can add Ethernet cards. These are old SPARC chip units, and not of the usual Sun quality, but compared to anything modern they are pretty well made.

You can often find them at University surplus sales outlets. Most Universities have one, and I've picked all sorts of interesting things from them. I got an Ultra 5 that was perfectly functional for $30 a few years ago, complete with keyboard, monitor and mouse. And Solaris too, but it was under lock and key so the disk was wiped clean.
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Old 15th April 2009
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After little bit of Google search I become very doubtful that my idea of putting MiniITX mother board into Thin Client is a good idea. Namely MiniITX cases are designed as a heat sinks for MiniITX mother boards.
On the bright side I found a few new MiniITX cases selling on Ebay for around
$35 including shipping.

I am not sure how MiniITX motherboards compares to SUN Netra and low end SUN Fire but I am becoming more inclined to get SUN hardware.
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