The refridgerator literally has directly observable physical effects on the world - chilled wine! - and yet it uses less power than a device doing symbolic operations all day.
There were a bunch of other surprises as well. The baseline load of my house is only about 200W (which seemed shockingly low to me, since I was raised in the era of 100W light bulbs), and it includes every laptop, tablet, phone, and battery charger that's plugged in; refrigerator and chest freezer; TVs and home entertainment on standby; nightlights and other small lamps we leave on; clocks & alarms; and everything else that's running continuously. Our gas heating system, however, uses 500W when on; apparently the blower is electric, and twice as much of a current draw as the rest of the baseline load. During the winter this is our biggest electricity expense, despite being "gas".
Dishwashers and washing machines are basically rounding error. Household appliances like vacuum cleaners are also surprisingly low-current. Anything with a heating element is a huge draw though (1-2kW), and that includes clothes dryers, electric thermos, Instapot, microwave, oven, and toaster oven. I can tell when my wife is preparing lunch by looking at the Tesla app.
If there's one thing you can do to save energy, it's probably to dry your clothes on a rack outside rather than the clothes dryer. We've got young kids so we do a lot of laundry, but in summertime probably 2/3 of our total energy usage goes to the clothes dryer, and in winter it's split between that and the gas heating.
Here in NM, you can take a load of athletic gear laundry outside to hang up and by the time you're done hanging it, the first items are already dry :) In winter, it takes about twice as long, indoors. So .. yeah.
OTOH in Winter you may want the extra humidity.
They use only about half the energy.
If you want one, head to any shop that sells appliances, and search "heat pump". Mine paid for itself within a year. You can also buy one 2nd hand for faster payback.
Besides - power boost only affects usage when actually stressing the CPU, which for most people is rare. Gamers are probably the exception.
Sooooo, this is is one reason I'm trying to move all the crap I host on my Synology, to a Ras Pi with an SSD, so I can shut down the spinning-rust most of the time. If I don't need to bother with a BackUPS because everything I care about runs off an 18650 for several hours, that means I can keep sleeping when the generator runs out of fuel and just restart it whenever my lazy bones want to roll out of bed.
Anyway, some details and photos back from when I built it (actually I built two, and am using the 2nd one now, after the builtin video on the first died and no more mobos were available)
Also, I seemed to have lied. It was based on an i3. I'm fairly sure you can get mobos in miniITX format for at least i5 and probably i7 at this point.
Some shots showing my van working setup:
Also, turned out that I needed a voltage regulator between my solar DC system and the computer. The picoPSU can only handle up to 14V, but the solar system can sometimes run the voltage at 14.4V, which will shutdown the computer. Such a thing as too much sunshine! :)
However, he says he's using a AC800s 4G/LTE modem and backs that up by saying is using mobile data. The default mobile data service from all telco's will use CGNAT and will hand him some 10.0.0.0 address. I presume that's because mobile phones don't run servers as a rule, so no one notices and it saves them a bit of money. They don't deliberately block any particular port, but CGNAT effectively blocks all of them.
He could pay a extra and get mobile data with a static IP Address if he wished. Not from Optus - they discontinued that service (which gives an indication of popular it is), but other virtual carriers based on Optus still offer it. I guess it's not worth the money to him.
Everything supports IPv6 now, and IPv6 happily carries IPv4. Why the telco's are still dicking around with CGNAT and IPv4 is a bit of a mystery.
The people who made that decision probably went to the same school that told network admins to disable IPv6 on VPN connections.
Also, some routers have a bug¹ whereby even a properly port-forwarded service won't be accessible from within the network. E.g., the port-forwarded service "works", except for you, on your own network. Really frustrating since it means how you connect depends on where you are, and it's a lot of special crap needed to determine "oh, okay, I'm on the home network so use the internal IP"; almost ended up setting up a split-horizon DNS to deal with it².
¹ISPs will tell you that they "lack a feature". Yeah, okay.
²but then we moved and now we have a different monopoly for an ISP.
i think the missing feature is called hairpinning
In order to accomplish that you need to double-NAT things because otherwise the internal service will send the reply directly to your computer instead of sending it back to the NAT gateway to reverse the NAT. The router needs to NAT the destination IP for the client and NAT the source IP for the server.
The thing is, 99.9999% of these devices never even have the port forwarding feature touched and an even smaller % of the devices where people enable port forwarding care about this.
I should also look into solar panels. I don't live where I host anymore (living in Germany now, good uplinks at home are usually impossible or at minimum expensive) so it's a bit more complicated but posts like these are inspiring.
Low tech magazine does link to my blog somewhere, as well as other, similar projects. Maybe they will also include yours!
You have a lot of sun probably so you lead acid battery will work. But lead acid needs to be recharged daily or the battery will deteriorate quickly. For more temperate climates lead acid is not ideal. And lead acid charges too slow for the little bit of sun we may have…
I'm not sure how that sentence is meant to be parsed, but the NBN Sky Muster Plus packages include unlimited downlink traffic (for everything except streaming video), though of course you're always stuck with satellite latency at ~ 600ms to domestic services ... at least until Starlink saves us all.
Though the Starlink phased arrays apparently consume a fairly consistent 100W, which might kibosh these kinds of cheap and cheerful solar + car battery rigs.
Plus I've not seen what Starlink offers in terms of fixed IP, or at least inbound routing. I can confirm that NBN SMP (as above) while relatively cheap for those of us in the middle of nowhere, does suffer from CGNAT, which makes this kind of self-hosted service infeasible.
Since switching to that grade of service I have consistently had captcha challenges every time I go through paypal (despite it saying 'we recognise you on this device...'), my Unifi VPN fails to work, despite following several guides specifically for double NAT (I'll probably end up with wireguard), and most recently my O365 endpoint failed to talk to me, as one of the half-dozen IPv4 addresses they route out of had been marked by Spamhaus.org, which a) is identified a woeful arrangement in itself, and b) took me two days to get rectified by the ISP by switching which address I came out with (a minor change which resulted in a 24 hour total outage).
I did ask about IPv6 - but nothing about that experience screamed 'we're ready to move our customers to IPv6', as you could imagine.
… but I believe they heavily filter the traffic in said IPv6 network, so that the addresses are not reachable
Ouch. I hope that's something they can work on with the next version of the ground terminal. Do they at least start up quickly when powered down?
You have hundreds of tiny antennas using constructive and destructive interference to steer the signal in software.
This digital aiming is awesome for targeting fast moving objects in low earth orbit. But you lose the huge amplification factor possible with a simple metal dish.
Combine this with the the desire to use higher attenuation frequencies in order to increase throughput and I don't really see Starlink's power consumption going down.
That power budget already represents a pretty big victory, and any gains will probably go to lower unit cost or higher data rates.
It doesn't. It moves to be in the same plane as the satellite, but it doesn't actually track the satellite.
The phased array can only track a single line across the sky. The dish moves so that line is parallel with the satellites orbit.
But after an initial aiming, the motors basically lock in place and the dish stays still. The phased array then tracks individual sats in orbit.
I think you parsed it correctly - author is saying you can’t get away from 600ms latency and limited bandwidth given where they live.
NBN (Australia's national broadband system) introduced, via a partner, this Sky Muster Plus offering about two years ago, that includes effectively unmetered plans, so the claim isn't as true as it used to be.
I'm barely hitting 1GB / month of metered content (but doing 300-600gb of unmetered) which is a huge improvement over the similar-priced satellite plans from SkyMesh for 70/70 (peak & off peak) plans, which involved regular usage checks and much fretting over bandwidth utilisation.
It's a reduced color palette, (in this case just black and white) so there's lots of repeated sequences. Which works very well with lossless compression.
For example https://solar.lowtechmagazine.com/dithers/Garthsnaid_-_SLV_H...
I'd try to work around that limitation using tor: https://golb.hplar.ch/2019/01/expose-server-tor.html
Clients will have to use tor too, but it could be used to complement instead of replacing the current solution.
If telegraf/Prometheus are overkill for the Pi, a cron that gets the power measurement and stores in an SQLite database would do the trick. Or one can go even more classical and use rrdtool to store and plot data, which can then be exposed as static files via the existing nginx setup.
Nginx reverse proxy has capability of caching static assets, does it mean most of the website is actually being served by cloud? So, technically raspberry pie should be consuming power only when cache timesout.
It would interesting to see similar efforts but from locations where the sun is less prominent, although I don't know how feasible that would actually be, guess it would depend on the size of the battery installation to avoid the fluctuations. Also projects powered by alternative means (wind and hydro comes to mind) would be awesome to see.
I suspect a 300Ah battery with 600W solar panels would take you through the Winter in the UK and similar latitudes.
I have a feeling that the best case / worst case scenario on what powers that remote 4G tower will disappoint a lot of people hoping this is a zero carbon footprint endeavor...
(The difference in power consumption for HTTP will be utterly negligible, and the addition of TLS very slight, amounting to no more than a couple of percent in the most extreme and pessimistic cases, according to my vague recollection of TLS CPU usage from some years ago.)
> I'm fairly familiar with CSS3 and all the new whizz bang CSS things that I could very well use to make this fancy looking, but I decided to go the simplest route. [...] Also it's basically mobile responsive out of the box.
But then I notice some column layout : https://www.andrewjvpowell.com/#about
How is that responsive? Well, "inpect" reveals flexbox, which is very much modern css.
Still minimalist though.