Odroid XU4 server

Front view of the server

Having one's own server provides the ability to run web services 24/7. However, having a computer running all the time can significantly increase one's electricity bill. The objective of this project was to build a low power home server capable of running common software (Apache, Node.js, etc.) while only consuming little power.

For this purpose the Odroid XU4 was a great candidate: It runs Ubuntu and is more than powerful enough to run as a web server while drawing less than 20W. Additionally, it comes with USB3.0 ports, great for applications requiring file storage with decent speeds.

The server was built on a small mesh-type shelf from Daiso (Japanese dollar store) using 3D printed brackets to hold the components in place. On top of the XU4, the server is equipped with two 1TB hard drives, power supply units and cooling fans.

Here, the hard drives are 3.5 inch and thus require a 12V power supply. The Odroid, on the other hand, operates at 5V. Consequently, I had to use two power supplies in the design, which could have been avoided by using 2.5 inch drives.

Here is a breakdown of the parts used:

On the software side, I wrote scripts to automate the full installation of the server. Those can be found on GitHub.