Introduction – This article is aimed at your average Joe User with little or No IT experience under their belt that wants but did not think they could own their very own Home Server. While I do realize that better mouse traps (In this case the mouse trap is the Home Server) can be built or bought using different hardware or different Operating Systems that goes beyond the scope of this particular Article.
Why do I need or even want a Home Server?
A very fair question and up to about even 5 years ago this would be more of a nice luxury item to show off to your geek friends in your garage, however now home servers are becoming more of necessity. With today’s society now heavily into electronic portable devices in their daily lives ranging from your average laptop to the most portable of devices like an IPhone, people have switched from a carbon paper filled existence to a virtual carbonless one. We no longer send mail we instead send e-mail, instead of sharing printed photo pictures on quality Kodak paper (by the way Kodak just filed for Bankruptcy not to long ago) we share Digital Pictures we may have taken with our digital cameras or cell phones, and instead of sharing a Cassette Tape or CD with our music we share our mp3’s on a portable media device. Since we cannot haul all our portable media were ever we go, it would get very cumbersome having to drag a desktop PC all over the place. The average every day person needs a way to access and possibly share their documents, pictures, video, and music remotely without swinging by their residence to pick it up. The answer lies in a central storage place, a Home Server.
I Can’t afford $$$$ for a server, I need to send my kids to College!
If you are talking about an HP Proliant or even a Dell PowerEdge Enterprise Server (which can go anywhere from $2,000 to $6,000 on a average) then yes you would have to possibly mortgage your house, spouse, and your dog. But since you do not need to support over 10,000 family members then this would be a little excessive. But with direct whole sellers that sell either refurbished or stock that never sold in stores from one third to one fourth of their original price you can get a perfectly good PC that will more than adequately serve that server function. Another even more affordable solution is re-purpose that old Desktop or even Laptop as your Home Server as well. Just because it maybe 4 or 5 years old does not mean it could not be reused for another useful function.