TerraMaster F4-423 review – A low-power 4-bay NAS tested with Unraid

Terramaster F4-423 NAS review

Hey Karl here. The timing couldn’t have been more opportune when I was asked to review the TerraMaster F4-423 4-bay NAS. Let me explain why. I run Unraid as my OS of choice for my home lab. I have found it easy to maintain and hard to break. My old rig had a 3900X with 3 cores, 6 threads dedicated to docker containers, and the remaining cores running VM’s. It has been a fun and learning experience. I have run it with several different VM configurations over the past few years. The majority of the time I ran 2 VM’s. One personal and one work and I would RDP over to the work VM. If I wanted to game I had a third gaming VM and allocated all resources to it. It’s not super convenient and as convoluted as it sounds. But recently I moved back to my company-provided laptop […]

Fanless Alder Lake network appliance comes with six 2.5GbE interfaces

Fanless Alder Lake network appliance

An OEM fanless network appliance has shown up online with a choice of 15-watt Intel Core i3-1215U, Core i5-1235U, and Core i7-1265U Alder Lake processors, and six 2.5GbE interfaces, as well as HDMI and DisplayPort video outputs, and support for M.2 NVMe SSD and 2.5-inch SATA drives. The design looks very similar to another white brand fanless network appliance with six 2.5GbE ports and an Intel Gemini Lake processor that we covered last year. Besides the faster processor, the new system replaces i225-V controllers with i226-V controllers, some of the USB ports have been upgraded to “USB 3.2”, and DisplayPort output was added for dual display setups. Specifications: Alder Lake SoC (one or the other) Intel Core i3-1215U hexa-core processor with 2x Performance cores @ up to 4.4 GHz, 4x Efficiency cores @ up to 3.3 GHz, Intel UHD Graphics; PBP: 15W Intel Core i5-1235U 10-core processor with 2x Performance […]

Reolink RLC-523WA & RLC-823A Review – Smart security cameras tested with Blue Iris

Reolink RLC-523WA 5MP camera review

Hello, Karl here with a security camera review. I’ll start out by thanking Reolink for sending over two cameras to review: RLC-523WA (WiFi) & RLC-823A (PoE). I already had a couple of cameras from Reolink that my buddy had recommended a long time ago. And had a positive experience so I agreed to review these higher-end models. My setup with Blue Iris, unRAID I have been running unRAID for quite a while now to simplify my server requirements. I was running several small SBC’s and a standalone NAS drive and consolidated them onto my main rig. AMD has pushed desktop core counts with their Ryzen CPUs and I have cores to spare. I started with a 3700x giving 2 cores to applications leaving me with 6 cores for my VM’s but recently upgraded to a 3900x. I now give 3 to applications and 9 cores for my VM’s. I started […]

GMK NucBox2 Review – Windows 10, Unraid OS on a Coffee Lake mini PC

GMK NucBox2 Review

Karl here. Today we are going to look at a mini PC. It is by GMK. GMK’s first foray looks to be the NucBox, a super tiny mini pc. I would call the NucBox2 its older, bigger, more capable brother. What stood out to me was the M.2 4x NVMe slot. I don’t anticipate a superfast SSD to come with the NucBox2 but we will see. The NucBox2 only had one 8 GB stick of memory and I had an extra stick laying around so I installed it to get dual-channel support. I think they are doing this mini PC a disservice using memory in single-channel mode. A quick Google search shows an 8GB stick is about $50 and I would highly recommend this upgrade. Notable Specs Processor – Intel Core i5-8259U 4-core/8-thread Coffee Lake processor 802.11 AC WiFI M.2 NVMe 256 GB SSD (Netac) 8GB memory single-channel Gig Ethernet […]

3D Printer Retraction Calibration Vol II – Calibration Generator Program Release

Calibration Generator Program

Good day. Karl here. It has been a while since I have submitted any articles. I got burned out and my normal day job picked up considerably. I have been keeping busy but not with anything I would share by itself. I will start out with an update on what I have been up to. You can skip to the 3D printer retraction calibration section with the release of the Calibration Generator tool if you are not interested. What have I been up to? First, I have been doing a lot of gaming. Been playing Fortnite, Red Dead Redemption 2, and some other random games. I am trying hard to keep up with my son. Unraid OS. So many things to explore and learn. Docker, VM’s, and storage. There is so much goodness in this OS. I was able to consolidate several services into one box. I had a standalone […]

ASUS Tinker board - Raspberry Pi alternative