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Under-House Datacenter

October 12, 2008

We’ve recently completed a home addition, and the electrician didn’t run the new phone lines through the DSL splitter I’ve mentioned before– its the gray box to the right of the main phone junction in the left of this photo. When we tried to connect a phone to the new lines, the DSL promptly cut out. While we had him come out to correct this (yes its a simple fix, but the job was a fixed bid, so I might as well have him do it), I asked him to install a new dedicated 15 amp circuit under the house. I could have easily tied into one of the numerous knob and tube circuits, but I’d have to run another line to the nearby gas meter to get ground. The new 200 amp power panel was just a few feet further away, and the electrician was out anyway, so… new circuit time!

I wanted to run ethernet to the Mac Mini in the living room and one of the bedrooms, and was tired of listening to the ReadyNAS, so the DSL modem, wireless router, NAS, and a new UPS (to safely shut down the NAS in case of a power outage) were all relocated under the house adjacent to the DSL splitter. The router only has four hardwired jacks, so it may eventually be replaced by an 8 port gig hub, but surprisingly the wireless signal is stronger under the house than in the house. The DSL modem is located on the side so I can more easily see the status lights from the under house access door. The router and NAS both have web interfaces (and the NAS even reports some limited info the UPS), so I’m hoping having limited physical access won’t be an important factor. And added benefit is easy access to a hardwired net connection for my Stoker based BBQ, which has been somewhat flaky running over a wireless adapter- problematic when you’re trying to collect cooking stats over a 12+ hour period. So far so good.


From → Gadgets

  1. Levi permalink

    Is that shelf earthquake proof? You do live in shaky-ville after all…

  2. rama permalink

    funny, i was worried about the same thing. but when i put it all together it seemed fine without a lip or rail to hold things in place. the network HW is light enough the cabling will hold it steady, and the NAS has a laptop lock on it (ya, I’m paranoid), so it doesn’t have much play to shimmy off the shelf.

  3. Alfred Chen permalink

    Interesting solution. I hope you don’t have to reboot your DSL modem or wireless router too often. Personally, I like seeing the flashing lights when I work. Keeps me awake 🙂

  4. Interesting solution

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  14. thanks!!

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