LAB.LOGFebruary 14th, 2020, 03:40am
KYAU Labs History
I have been running a lab since... well since as long as I can remember. It is honestly hard to think of a time now when I haven't been running one, in some form or another.
The "homelab" is merely a modern term for something that, upon reflection, has always been in my life. Everything that I know about computers and technology in general can be attributed to my lab. From learning how to code, to learning Linux & BSD, to dabbling in networking, none of this would have been possible without my lab.
Whether my lab was running off of multiple regular PCs, off of a dedicated server and/or vps, or more recently on second-hand enterprise hardware.
While some might already know that I have documented some of this over the years, originally in the form of whitepapers (back in my FreeBSD days) and more recently on my Wiki. Back in 2018, with the purchase of a Dell R610, I started once more to rebuild my lab. I wanted to document all of this but it was becoming increasingly clear to me that the wiki was not exactly the right format for such an endeavor. I finally came to conclusion of LAB.LOG.
With the introduction of the Zen 2 architecture, while still a decent route to take, building a lab with second-hand enterprise hardware is becoming less and less cost-effective. Meaning that performance per dollar can be more easily attained by going the Zen 2 route.
Granted this depends heavily on the situation and how the hardware is obtained. If power is cheap in your area or if you work in an IT-related field and can get free or near-free hardware then it might not matter either way.
After seeing many of the very cool lab/network diagrams on /r/homelab I started designing my own. I have been working on this off/on for the better part of 13 months. Right after christmas this past year I had some time to finally sit down and get it to a point where I feel comfortable showing it to others. I designed it in Visio using mostly official manufacturer stencils with a couple of them being custom made and the rest from VisioCafe.
I decided to go with a full multi-page layout for my schema. The first page is comprised of the full rack overview. Next is the dual page hardware section giving each piece of hardware pages for the front and the back of the device. Finally there is a network diagram which includes the entire KYAU Network (LAN + LAB + VPS).
Everything in the schema was updated to be current at the time of this posting. The Dell R610, at this point, is merely collecting dust. I have recently ordered a new 4U case for a machine I will be building in the coming weeks, when it arrives I will likely be re-organizing the rack quite a bit and removing the R610.
From here going forward I plan to take the next week or two to get up to date with things I have been working on in my lab.