Recent project: setting up on dedicated hardware.

I wasn't happy with the complications that arose from running pihole in on my home server, so I wanted dedicated appliances. I decided to use a and a PC Engines APU that was my former home router.

is straight-up HARD to install on something without a graphics card. CentOS makes this easy, but...

Debian required me to fiddle with syslinux AND grub, in the installer and installed system respectively, to get a functional system on a serial console. Why?!

At least I now have two functional pihole hosts, but that was far harder than it had to be. A few extra options enabled in the installer and grub would have saved me hours of research and trial & error.

so tl;dr the raspi was super easy and straight forward, with raspian shipping on a ready-to-go image, but standard debian installs on serial are a rocky road. I had to find tips from an article dated 2006 to figure out what I was doing wrong in syslinux, since I'm gravely unfamiliar with it.

Also, being generally obsessed with PoE since I got a PoE switch, I bought a raspi PoE splitter so I have one less wall wart on a power bar.

I didn't even know such a thing existed. I was looking at other SBCs that were directly PoE capable when a friend said "Dude just get a spliter with micro USB". Sometimes you miss the trees while looking at the forest.

@gentoorebel Debian doesn't officially support Raspberry PI (primary reason being it doesn't even boot without non-free firmware). I have tried Debian on my Banana PI and the installer worked just fine.

@r
Yeah I went with raspbian for that, and it was much easier since I didn't have to 'install' it in the traditional way, just dd an SD card and go.

@gentoorebel Now you got me curious of the home router. Do you have any blog posts on it?

@jordan31
Nah. It isn't anything special aside from being a nice piece of hardware.

Acquired a surplus Axiomtek NA-560 and a small SATA SSD to run opnsense on. That's what replaced the APU which also ran opnsense. The APU was working pretty hard when the network got busy (250 MB/s) so I wanted some breathing room. Plus I can rack this unit instead of having it on a shelf.

Now that you mention it... My network rack may be worth a short blog post though...

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