For a year or so The Little Woman has been using one of my old thin clients I bought to put on a presentation at a teacher’s conference nearly ten years ago. The thin client was sluggish and annoying at times (100 mbits/s NIC, needing to coordinate our reboots/installations, video) and it took a lot of tweaking to make it work for her. Yesterday, we had her old PC repaired. It needed a new motherboard. In the process, we bumped up her RAM, storage, video, networking speed and CPU power. Beast is a little short of RAM so this will help me until I upgrade or replace Beast which has been serving as her GNU/Linux terminal server. Hardware cost? Zero (spare part). Loss of Freedom? None.
I booted her renovated PC by PXE (boot from LAN in the BIOS) and loaded Debian’s installer by TFTP. I couldn’t just copy Beast’s OS over to her because Beast runs a lot of stuff she doesn’t need, so I will install Debian 8 Jessie from scratch. The new system will be snappy with all bottlenecks widened. It was a great project for a rainy day with high winds. Fall has blown in.