I'm surprised no one's mentioned this yet, but one way to significantly
reduce power consumption is to downclock the processor. Yes, that
reduces performance, but chances are you won't even notice it unless
you're running the server under a heavy load. You said your network
consists of two machines (a laptop and desktop) - that is very far from
a "heavy load". You said you have a 1.8 GHz Athlon - if you downclocked
it 50% you still probably wouldn't notice any change. I have an old
machine with a 300 MHz processor, but even that is more than adequate
when it's only serving web pages or mail to a single laptop. On most new
motherboards, you set the clock speed in the BIOS, but on older machines
it requires changing jumper settings. Obviously, doing it in BIOS is
much easier.

> : Yes; spills, flying objects, whatever. Most importantly, it's not on
> : the floor, and securely on my desk. I deal w/ the noise by keeping
> the
> What is so bad with the floor?

I've found that when the machine is left on the floor, it sucks in a lot
of dust. And the dust coats everything and makes it run hotter. I live
in a dusty place, so I periodically have to open the case and blow out
the dust with an air compressor.

> : > That reminds me: is a CD/RW a feasible data backup device?  I've
> never used: > mine.
> : 
> : For me, yes it is. Tapes are, or were, too expensive. The CD/RW I

Read the FreeBSD Handbook, the section on "Raw Data CDs". That's the
backup method I use, and it works well. It's also kind of nice that
nobody else can read your CDs unless they're using FreeBSD.

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