Finally opened the box

My good friend Mr Dan Patterson got me one of these as a gift when I joined TWiT. Haven’t had much time to touch it. At the very least, I now have it assembled.
Not sure what I’m gonna do with it other than see how much I can edit photos on it. I’m not as geektacular about hardware as you all are. I ran Ubuntu at home for many years, years ago because at the time I couldn’t afford a computer upgrade. But i finally got tired of fighting with Xorg for dual displays. (I know that has been deprecated/updated now, but I still have no desire to run Linux as a daily driver. Not at this moment, anyway)

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They do make a fine NAS, now that you have fast USB.
You can also run something like HomeAssistant on it to wrangle some smart home things, even in a docker container to avoid any conflicts with other things.

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The best time-invest / return-of-use relation for a Pi, in my mind, is to install a Pi-Hole (https://pi-hole.net/). It’s incredibly easy to do and extremely useful.

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I currently have seven Raspberry Pi’s running for personal use and four Pi’s running for a work project. Their relatively low performance and cost makes them best suited to dedicated tasks like a NAS or whole house ad blocker.

If you have time to spare definitely give it a try as a desktop replacement but I suspect like me you’ll find it severely lacking. To get up and running fast and more easily find answers to problems use the officially supported Raspberry Pi OS. https://www.raspberrypi.org/downloads/raspberry-pi-os/

Assuming you don’t find it powerful enough for genral purpose use, here’s a photography idea. Get the brand new high quality Pi camera that uses C-mount lenses.
https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/raspberry-pi-high-quality-camera/
Then run one of the software packages that makes it a time lapse camera system. I use this software on one of my Pi Zero W’s with the old fixed lens low res camera module as a nature camera on my porch.
https://elinux.org/RPi-Cam-Web-Interface

Another good photography use is as a dedicated DLSR controller.

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It’s always fun to open a box with electronics in it - even if they require some work :stuck_out_tongue:

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That’s something I did not think about. THX

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I’m thinking of getting a Pi 3 and running Pi Hole and Unifi’s AP Controller software (on Open-Java). Do you think it’s powerful enough? (I think Yes, but looking for confirmation)

could also leave it running a Tor relay if you’re feeling charitable with your bandwidth

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I would clarify/recommend not being an exit relay, just a middle relay. Back in the days before HTTPS was widely used I ran an Tor exit relay. I then found in my firewall logs all the URL’s and user/pass. I could see where everyone was going. I started “investigating” what people were using the Tor for. This lasted around 5 mins as after a few normal sites visited the logs were full of the Internet’s most unsavory content and very illegal… and all exiting from my home IP… I never had a knock at my door thankfully as I would of had some explaining to do :rofl: I moved on to being middle relay.

I have not run any relays now for years but I still donate to Tor as I think is a valuable service for good overall.

I do have a Pi running a Tor hidden service (Dark website) I am experimenting with this on and off atm with the idea of running my existing Pi 4 8gb Nextcloud installation as a hidden service. Not that it needs to be hidden but atm I have a domain name but the registrar has control over this. As a hidden service I would be in control of the server address or at least more control. Pi 4 8gb is great! I like having 7gb of ram free! :rofl:

There is a TWIT thread of peoples uses for Pi here: Rapsberry Pi - What’s your usage?

mine atm.
Pi 3 - email server
Pi 3 - Pi-hole
Pi 4 - Nextcloud
Pi 3 - Tor hidden service
Pi ? - Remote central heating control - future project - I have the relays etc just need to get round to putting together.
Pi ? - 3d Printer controller for my 3d printer - future project
Pi 3 - RetroPi gaming retired

I also like the idea of a video doorbell. I purchased the camera module a while back but have not even opened the box yet… So many things to do with a Pi so little time.

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Thanks, yes I should have mentioned this. As an individual you really don’t want to run an exit on your network.

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I use a Pi 3 as a pihole, NAS, an openVPN server, a node-red based home automation controller including MQTT, and a mariah (mySQL) database server for all the sensor and automation data. If you have never tried the DietPi distrubution, I highly recommend it. It makes easy work of installing many of the most common tools (there are images for many common SBCs and also VM images).

I would say the feature I use most and can’t live without is the openVPN server. Not only can I access my home resources remotely, but I can also use the pihole on my phones/computers when not on the wifi.

The NAS works ok for normal use, but prior to the Pi 4, the bandwidth is constrained.

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