I wish to find a home-server with the following characteristics:

  • runs Linux on ARMv7 (32 bits), ARMv8 (64 bits), or x86-64;
  • at least 2GB of RAM and 4 CPU cores;
  • fan-less;
  • gigabit ethernet (1Gb/s);
  • fast storage, which means either SATA, eSATA, or USB3 (USB2 is too slow);
  • low power consumption;
  • an enclosure is a plus, although I don’t mind too much if the server has none.

And now, here is the most promising hardware that I found, with some notes. I thought other people might be interested too.

HardwareGoodBadPower(*)My conclusion
CubieBoard 3, aka. CubieTruck— SATA2
— only 2 CPU cores
6Not enough CPU power.
CubieBoard 5, aka. CubieTruck+
— SATA through USB2
12Slow disk I/O.
WandBoard Quad— eSATA
— Vivante graphics
— ethernet limited to ½Gb/s
— low-frequency CPU cores
7Not enough CPU power.
MinnowBoard MAX— open-source hardware
— Intel graphics
— USB3
— only 2 CPU cores
50Good! But there is better.
ODroid C2— cheap
— no fast storage
16Slow disk I/O.
ODroid XU4— USB3
— small fan
— expensive enclosure for fan-less functioning
20There’s no better board at this price, but there’s a fan…
CuBox-i4Pro— cute, nice-looking
— low-frequency CPU cores
— ethernet limited to ½Gb/s
10Good appliance in a living-room.
Not enough CPU power for me.
Banana Pi M3
— SATA through USB212Slow disk I/O.
Pine64+ 2GB
— very cheap
— no fast storage
— low-frequency CPU cores
12Slow disk I/O.
Not enough CPU power.
UP— powerful yet small
— no fast storage
— no enclosure
75Slow disk I/O.
UDOO X86— open-source hardware
— Intel graphics
— Arduino included
— can power a 3.5″ SATA drive without the need for an external disk enclosure
— slightly higher power consumption
100My choice :-)
(*) This is an absolutely unscientific, completely subjective, relative power notation, based on miscellaneous benchmarks found on the Internet, with the 100-mark serving as a reference (this is the power delivered by the UDOO X86).

Here are the main sources of information that helped me find what I wanted: