Main server upgrade
The client for who I had set up the remote backup, decided to upgrade their server in December 2014 because they needed a machine that could handle their storage requirements and that would be easy to upgrade in the future. The old server was running Mac OS X, which had run well for a few years, but it was lacking in any advanced filesystem options, so it was hard to expand it above the level that it was at. I had been successfully using Centos in the previous servers that I had built, so I decided to install version 6, because it would still be supported until 2020 with updates. The main reason for using an open source operating system is the cost. Microsoft charges an unnecessary amount for an OS that runs slower, which then means that you have to buy expensive hardware to get it to run decently. They then charge for the client connections, simply because they can, while taking their time to release security updates, because they know that their customers are trapped with them. Ever since the server has been installed, complaints about the slowness of the email have finally disappeared. The mail service has some nice tuning options so that the power of the server can be used efficiently, the file sharing services also have a vast array of options, so it is possible to tune the server based on the amount of people that will be accessing it. I also had to update the remote backup server, that is at one of the directors houses, so that it could handle some extra data that they had. I upgraded the case to an 8 bay one and also put in it a 6 port SATA Mini ITX board, with a 2 port mini PCI-E card to make up the 8 needed connections. The backup script has been rock solid and it sure is a lot cheaper than paying an external company, with the added benefit that the data can be instantly accessed. The remote backup server runs from an 8GB USB key, that has a read only file system to stop flash wear, which can easily be swapped with a replacement if it has a problem. I can either send out a new one in the post, or they can download the image and write it to one of their USB keys. They were also the first client where I tried out a router that I had added some long aerials to, they were not getting a good signal from their current wireless, so I found a router that I could install OpenWRT on and then attached some 9dbi aerials to it, which I had to get from overseas. It certainly had the desired effect and they hardly seem to call me up now, after the new wireless and server were installed. Below are pictures of the wireless router with the upgraded aerials and the new server.