Posted by: tranquilpc | November 5, 2007

Diary – Page 1 (Introduction)

 bigstockphoto_Diary_Entry_215990 A Tranquil life… My background





So, a little history about me, I write code, fix code, take photo’s and buy gadgets, I’d definitely put myself in the category of “IT Nerd”… over a great number of years I’ve spent a lot of time and money buying various gadgets that I thought were cool, but over the past 12 months I’ve been sorting out all of the gadgets I’d bought of the past few years and selling them on Ebay… I hate to say it, but I’ve caught the green bug… whether global warming is just a stage the earth is going through or something that man has caused, I think that having a lower carbon footprint makes sense… so, I’ve become a bit of an “earth father”, is that a phrase I can use? I’m not sure, but I will anyway…

The issue is that I love gadgets, but want to make sure that the toys that I use are carbon neutral and friendly to the environment… so one gadget I just had to have was the Electrisave… very cool piece of kit which allowed me to completely obsess on the amount of electricity I was using in my house. The first time I ran the dishwasher, oven and washing machine at the same time my girlfriend had to talk me down from the window ledge… over 7kw per hour were being used… I had to rush out immediately to hug a tree so I could feel better about myself…

Anyway, the thing that concerned me the most was the amount of latent power being used… when I thought my house wasn’t doing that much, I was still using over .5kw – .7kw per hour. I decided that lowering that usage was something I would address… but, I still have some requirements that need to be met. I loved my “digital home” which incorporates a Windows Media Centre (420w), something to edit photos on (now a laptop @110w), multiple devices to backup my photo’s, I’m heavily into photography, you can check out my stuff here (shameless plug) and somewhere to store and backup all of my media audio/video….

Sometime ago I’d got rid of a 600w beast of a computer and decided to use a laptop to do my photo editing, so that question was pretty much answered. The main thing was my Windows Media Centre, this device ran all the time, had some high power components in it and could easily add up to a significant amount of the .5kw that was being used without me doing anything… I started looking around for hardware and eventually came across the Acer L100, seemed like a good piece of kit, but very limited in expansion, I purchase and at only 110w it seemed like a good piece of kit and at a good price point… so, I replaced my current media centre with this Acer….

Without wanting to sound like a complete Tranquil convert, although I quite clearly am, I’m planning to replace the Acer L100, with one of the Tranquil MCE’s based upon my experience with the T7-HSA, you really can’t compare the build quality between the Acer and Tranquil.  Acers are great, but mass produced, Tranquil create some of the most efficient and beautifully engineered machines I’ve ever seen on the market… I think the AVA2 is the way to go for me, halving the power usage of my MCE @ 38-45watts… I feel another tree hugging gadget moment coming on…

To get on with the story, I went through my old MCE removing all the high spec hardware and trying to make it as lean as possible… but it still used around 200 – 250w of power, overall things were better and I could obsess a little less about what my Electrisave was telling me, but the numbers were still too high…

I had an opportunity to get onto the Windows Home Server Beta and so decided to change my old power house of a machine should become a Windows Home Server… it worked like a dream… the install was nice and smooth… but of course with the installation you have to format all your disks. When you have 800GB of content it takes a heck of a lot of time to get the data off the disks… but, I persevered and got the data off the machine, the installation completed and it was time to repeat the copying process and get the data back on there…

I guess I could run through 101 different things that I love about Windows Home Server, but there are enough blogs and reviews out there, you can make up your own minds… put plain and simply… for my needs, it’s awesome. PC Backup, a central location to administer your network from, remote access to the same files, remote access to any machine on my home network…

Whilst doing testing for Windows Home Server, a company name started to appear in the forums, a name I’d never heard before… Tranquil… apparently, they were planning to release a Windows Home Server hardware solution that fully loaded with 5 disks (a potential 5TB) would use less than 50w of power… holy cow! That appealed to the earth father and the gadget freak in me, the force was strong in this one… there were no two ways about it, I had to get one… the order was placed and I played the waiting game… and the waiting game wasn’t that long, within a week I received an email saying that the Server would be arriving the following day… and so it begins “A Tranquil life… the Windows Home Server Diaries”…

Go to next page….  Day 1



  1. […] Page 1 – “Tranquil Life ….My background”Page 2 – Diary – “Day 1″ […]

  2. very precise and to the point blog post on a very informative subject.

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