I wanted more control over the lighting in my basement “studio”, and decided to invest in a few dimmer/switch packs as well as a USB rack-mount DMX controller.
OK, So I’m Being a Bit Facetious Obviously I and most everyone else knows that the vast majority of American household stuff is powered at 120V. Almost all receptacles and (nearly) all lights in a home are indeed supplied at 120V. But! It’s not as simple as that. So maybe the video title is a tiny bit of clickbait, but it’s also more or less true. Most Americans do indeed have 240V supplied to their home, and that is the line-to-line voltage. The transformer is rated for 240 Volts with a center tap that happens to be referenced to ground/earth, and it just so happens that the potential difference between the center tap (ground) and either of the two lines … Continue reading
I found a great deal on eBay. A Dell Compellent SC220 chassis filled with 24 x 600GB 10K SAS disks for $350 including shipping. Obviously if you’re reading this years later that will seem like a terrible price, but as of now 600GB SAS drives are selling for about $30 each (used). So it’s roughly $720 worth of drives alone. The SC220 is basically an MD1220 in sheep’s clothing (though sheep are generally naked so who knows), and those are selling for about $120. Like I said, a great deal! But there was one question that needed answering: Did the Dell-branded Compellent HDDs have some kind of special firmware that rendered them useless with a standard RAID or JBOD controller? … Continue reading
The HP Procurve 5406ZL and…
…a whole lot of other crap, vis a vis my opinions on used enterprise-grade networking hardware for the home (or small-ish business).
I purchased an HP Procurve 5406ZL on eBay mainly because I “need” 10GbE on my home network, which is almost recursive because it’s for editing 4K video, which I need for editing this video.
The bottom line for me is that you can’t beat the feature/price ratio when it comes to equipment like this. That is, if you can afford the resultant power bill.
It turns out that I have more battery chargers than sense, so I built this monstrosity.
My old style programmable thermostat died last weekend, and so I rushed over to Home Depot to get a replacement. I wanted a smart thermostat mainly for its wifi connectivity, but also wanted to try out the truly “smart” aspect of it: Optimizing heating and cooling cycles to suit my needs.
They did an excellent job with the user interface, making setup really easy. And their app, though slow to connect at times, is overall well-designed and easy to use. So far I like the ecobee3, but my main concern is with reliability/longevity, and that of course remains to be seen.
What’s all this, then?
Back in August I reviewed the Netgear 6100D from Sprint and followed up with a post detailing some advanced configuration options.
I also installed a flat panel 4G antenna from 4G Antenna Shop. I made a video detailing the unboxing and installation (which I just got around to editing together):
It’s my first video of this sort, so if you have any feedback please let me know in the YouTube comments or by email!
4G Antenna Shop
I didn’t get into it in the video, but overall I’d recommend 4G Antenna Shop. The cable and antenna I got were both of very high quality and definitely worth the price.
Their customer service was great; I had a couple of questions about my order, and one of their guys (Robert) got back to me within 15 minutes and was extremely helpful. They shipped really quickly, too.
I did have two minor issues, both of which I talk about in the video:
During checkout they give you the option of selecting your device so that they can provide the correct adapters to go from the cable (if you order it through them) to the device. At the time I’d ordered, they had an option for “Netgear Sprint Spark LTE”, which I thought was the Netgear 6100D. There was no separate option for the 6100D, but it turned out that they were referencing a different product, and so I received the wrong adapters. (They’ve since added the 6100D as an option.)
I chalked this up to being mostly my fault, as I didn’t know that there was another Netgear LTE device out there for Sprint Spark.
My other issue was with the packing job. Again, it’s a minor complaint because nothing was damaged, but the box arrived pretty beaten up with holes in the top from the antenna mount having poked through. There was no packing material to keep the box rigid, and the antenna and cable were just sorta rattling around inside.
Bear with Me…
Oh, and sorry if I rambled on a bit in the video. If you couldn’t tell from a lot of my other posts on here, I have an aversion to brevity. :)
I’m hoping to get some more how-to and instructional videos out there in 2015, so please subscribe to my YouTube channel!
(Hey, I’m allowed to shill for myself, right?)
If you’ve read my blog, you know that I have a quite a few servers in my basement that I use as a home lab environment. For home or low-demand virtualization, you can’t beat the Dell R905 for price. Consider that, as of the time I’m writing this post, you can get an R905 like I did with 128 GB of RAM for about $960. That’s only a little more than the cost of the RAM! That machine has 4x AMD Opteron 8356 quad-core CPUs @ 2.3Ghz and two built-in 10gbps ethernet ports (plus 2 gigabit ports), a PERC6i controller, dual PSUs, and a full enterprise DRAC. It’s a little old, but you can’t get those specs in any other … Continue reading
TL;DR: Skip right to the undocumented commands Background I recently purchased a Dell BMX blade chassis on eBay that came loaded with ten 2x dual-core, 24GB PE1955 blades. For a system with 40 cores, 240 GB of RAM and two 16-port gigabit switches in a 7U frame, $2500 was too good to pass up. Especially since shipping cost me a mere 2 hour round-trip to Brooklyn. I didn’t really need ten more servers, so I figured I’d sell off 5 or 6 of them (hopefully breaking even on the entire system — the 4GB FB-DIMMs in 6 of the servers is worth $1450 – $1900 alone). The remaining servers would be all mine! But I forgot to research the noise! … Continue reading
This is a follow-up to my previous post, Chevy Volt Metered Charging (Phase I). In the first phase, I ran a new dedicated circuit from the subpanel in my garage to the opposite wall to connect a 120V charging station. In this phase, I removed the existing receptacle, rewired for 240V, installed the Voltec Level 2 charging station, and wired the kWh meter inline. It’s not my intent to write a full set of instructions for installation here. The purpose of this post is to illustrate some of the installation steps with real-world pictures, which are somewhat hard to come by online (the pictures are rather small, but you can click on any of them for a larger version). As … Continue reading