[Samba] Samba embedded device?

Gregory Sloop gregs at sloop.net
Mon Dec 1 22:26:33 MST 2014

G> At work I have several small branch offices with ~5 PCs each. All PCs are
G> member of a Samba4 domain, whose DCs are on the headquarters (linked by
G> consumer grade VPNs)

G> I want to ship "some small, cheap, reliable and magical device" to each
G> branch, in order to provide just 2 things:
G> * AD replication
G> * File shares

If I/O performance isn't a huge issue [and it probably shouldn't be for a 5 client branch office], how about some used Dell Optiplexes [You can use anything, but good Optiplex 755/760/780's go cheap on the 'bay]

I've picked up 755's /C2D-3Ghz/4G RAM plus old crappy used disks for <$100
780s can be had for $150 or so, depending.

Sure, they are SATA drives, no ECC memory etc - but for a small work-group, with some good backup they should be more than adequate.
Pick up a few extras for hot-spares and you can do all your own warranty service with a <4hr window at a very attractive price! :) [The only things likely to fail are power-supplies and/or disks. The hot-spares takes care of PS problems (as well as anything else), and disks would be an issue with any setup.]

I'd obviously drop new disk(s) in, and run them a while to weed out early failures. 

Sure they burn more power than some "appliance" - but for the cost, it seems no-brainer.

If you need something higher end - but still not server class - Precision workstations are also quite cheap. These can use ECC memory. [unbuffered]
Lots of drive bays. Serious tanks.

I love the idea of a low-power high-performance appliance. A NAS will work fine for storage, but it's not going to act as a DC etc. [At least none that I'm aware of and would trust.]

Even appliances sorta like this, that I've seen, are easily five times the price.


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