Technical Blog

Buying a 10Gbps or higher network on a homelab budget

This is a project I’ve been thinking about for a long time… how to get 10gbpe+ networking in a homelab without breaking the bank.

First option is just getting some DAC Cables and dual port 10Gbpe NICs then build a point-to-point ring network. That is relatively cheap and would set me up for future switched networks. DACs could be swapped out for GBics that use copper (thermal issues) or fiber (delicate).

Next is a relatively cheap at a couple hundred dollars switch with likely a low number of SFP+ ports. This is ~$200-$500 with anywhere from 2 to 16 ports at 10Gbps. Often switches with 10Gbps advertised only have one or two ports at that speed so shop carefully. You still have the cost of the NICs and cabling but only need one port on the NIC.

Lastly, you could go all in with an enterprise switch like the HP ProCurve 5406zl which is a module hosting monster of a switch. These are massively upgradable but come with a lot of complexity to set up and manage. They are also incredibly loud (intended for server rooms) and suck a ton of power which generates lots of heat (thermal load). These are getting cheaper but are heavy to ship and still usually several hundred dollars with modules that can cost thousands. Don’t expect a warranty on these as they are being pushed out of enterprise usage as end of life.

Along time between posts

So it’s been quite awhile since I posted anything to any blog. I did post a couple updates as I did projects in grad school. The Wordpress site I used for this earlier died and was hosted on a VMware ESXi server in my homelab. I didn’t have time to fix it while in school so no postings since mid-2016.

PhotoSynth Export and Visualizer

I have developed something interesting for my graduate class in Computations Photography for the final project. As background, for the class we had an assignment in which we used the Microsoft Photosynth service to generate a 3D walkthru of an area by uploading several hundred photographs. On the back-end the Photosynth web service does feature extraction on all the photos and then related the photos in three dimensions to each other and the feature points. This generated a point cloud of related points between the photos.


Artificial Intelligence for Robotics (CS8803-001)

Artificial Intelligence for Robotics (CS8803-001)

Associated with Georgia Institute of Technology

Fall Semester 2015

The goal for the final project in CS6475 AI for Robotics was to create a robotic platform to investigate computer vision technology. The platform included an Arduino with sensors and motors and a Raspberry Pi 2 for the vision and primary control system. The project URL is a video channel that shows the progress and challenges.