News and Happenings from the Japanese Linux Pioneer

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Announcing the "Will Linux Work?" Contest

Plat’Home’s OpenMicroServers are known for being tough. Their compact, fanless, diskless design combined with the stability of Linux creates a product that is great for companies to configure once and then stick in a corner for weeks and months or years even - without checking on the condition. This “benign neglect” is tough on normal servers, but not for Plat’Home’s OpenMicroServers.

We want to put our servers up to the test though. For five weeks - from August 1, 2008, through September 5, 2008 - Plat’home will conduct an online contest to solicit ideas for the most interesting and challenging conditions to successfully run Plat’Home’s OpenMicroServers.

Does your small business in Arizona have a server room with no air conditioning? Do you live in Alaska and need server(s) that might be subjected to cold conditions? Are you an archaeologist that needs a computer that can be taken on a dig with you and survive dust and bugs? Tell us about it! We want to know if Linux is the solution! “Will Linux Work?”

Participants are invited to submit ideas to our blog by posting a comment below or on any of the following blog posts. You can even direct message us your ideas on our Twitter account. We will discuss the most interesting submissions and ask for reader’s weigh-in on this blog and Twitter to help us choose the winner.

At the end of the five-week period, we will choose our winner to receive 5 free OpenMicroServers. You get to try your idea for real!

Upon acceptance, the winner will be asked to test the server in their suggested condition and report the results back to Plat’Home. We really want to know “Will Linux Work?” You receive the 5 servers, test your idea and then report back to us with a short description and some pictures. If it works like you wanted, you get to keep the OpenMicroServers.

Hope you are already thinking of some great ideas! To get started, simply just submit your idea(s) to this blog and/or the Twitter account.


n7ipb said...

How about as a controller for Amateur radio repeaters in an unheated container on a 4200' hilltop.

Using Asterisk and modified usb audio dongles to interface to the radios.

In January 2008 the site looked like this:

During the summer:

Steve said...

Place the server on a recently re-tarred roof in Phoenix using its Wireless Access Point function. Think the heat would kill it?

Tom said...

Put the server in the attic of a North Carolina house during the summer.

Scott said...

My house as an unconditioned mechanical closet with 170 deg. F. boiler and two 3KW solar inverters -- it gets HOT in the summer! I would use your devices as a home automation server, monitoring the inverters, boiler, heating zones, etc.

aygun said...

What about an wireless router with hard drive ? The hard drive from your server must be an SSD and you can link to the NAS via wireless link and put the files there. Something like an regular linux distribution but with /home directori on the wireless NAS.In this way you're server can be at 200 meters from the storage point.

Also you can make an alternate storage fr your server , Flash Pen based , using an usb hub and link all the usb Flash Pen's via LVM.
But the only limitation is the read / write cycles. S to limit these knd of problems you should make an symlink to an external storage device ( like I said - an wireless NAS ) and define in it the /home folders and some folders from /var

With respect ,

Abibula Aygun

Anonymous said...

What abou in some tough condition on the way of Black Sea ? Salt , dust , rain , heat , fog all in one at the seashore of Black Sea.

In the summer the temperature can reach at 60 degrees on the sun.
In the winter -14 or -20 degrees and cold wind , snow and something like it. I can test it for you in this conditions on the network of my company 1A SCS . The website is

Also I can test it on some other hard condition on the dust , sun , rain ,snow , winter wind , snow , snow storm , sun or what you want on the Murfatlar Winery. We have there an wireless network with some windows servers and I want too change them. Also on the winery we have a lot of grapevines and 20 farms with grapes/ grapevines. The website of the winery is

Thank you


jperlow said...

I would do Ultracold/Ultrahot testing doing the following

1a) South Carolina or New Orleans attic during the summer. humid and hot. Attach wireless bridge and run open router software, run Rsync to run "time machine" backups of critical data on home PCs.

1b) Do the same with a house in northern canada as close to the arctic circle

2) Power the unit using solar panels with lithium ion backup storage, to see if the unit can run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week completely off the grid.

3) Put on roof of a truck that does the ice road trucking route, powered by a combination of 12v power inverter and solar panel with lithium-ion backup batteries.
Connnect to GPS tracking unit and satellite uplink with integrated real time monitoring / telemetry.

James said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James said...

I need a server to work during a hurricane. I need it to produce very little heat and consume very little energy. It also needs to be water resistant. It must be able to run from generator power and provide weather and safety information to users over a wireless access point. Living in south Florida, we get hurricanes all the time. We also have a huge risk of flooding from those hurricanes. Being able to deploy quick and reliable servers is key to storm recovery.

Takmadeus said...

Some time ago I had to do a health brigade in a far away town where they had several emerald mines, we got the chance to get to the deepest mine which lied 350 or more meters down below, and the temperature was like 55° celsius down there. Plus the humidity inside that mine shaft was so high it actually7 had a permanent storm produced by the humid air and several underground water sources several meters up from where we were. Not to mention that the soil in the mine was oleous and the earth had the properties of oily stuff, hard to get rid of, and tended to impregnate everything it touched. I remember we had to leave out cameras and cellphones in the surface given that they could be easily damaged in the mine.

If your servers can sustain 48 hours of continuous work (the normal work shift for the miners), then it can work anywhere anytime, I am sure of it.

Martin Ewing said...

My application is for home utility automation, relating to energy efficiency. System would monitor heating zones, hot water, and air conditioning systems cycle times, allowing home owner to extract information daily and plan strategies for fuel and cost savings. Advanced versions would allow for time-of-day scheduling to take advantage of variable utility rates.

Anonymous said...

How about placing one on a drive way or valley floor during the summer in Death Valley? Where there's water, heat (over 139 degrees Fahrenheit) winds, sand, sun damage, etc. etc..

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