My New Home Theatre Mini PC

Received through the post yesterday, MINISFORUM UM250 Ryzen Mini PC; AMD Ryzen 5 Pro 2500U; Vega 6 Graphics; 256GB M.2 NGFF SSD; 16GB DDR4 RAM; Triple Display Support; Dual Gigabit Ethernet + WiFi6 [UM250-16-256]

Took me ages to find the right key for the bios, to get rid of Windows 10. Tried all the way from F2, F8, F11, F12. In the end rebooted and hit delete and wallop straight into bios. Installed Linux Mint and it’s running superbly. So small can fit it in the palm of your hand. Got fed up of not having Disney+ on BT Box, so thought screw it I’m paying for Netflix, Disney, Amazon Prime. Need a computer to fit by the 32" 1440p monitor, we use for media, opted for this and she’s running like a dream. Can highly recommend, especially if you setup Firefox to open Netflix, Disney+ and all the other online TV hubs as shortcuts on your panel. Then just switch on choose whatcha gonna watch, at a click of a mouse all loaded for ya. I have not had to bother about screen tearing, as the monitor has that covered.

Could of gone with the 512GB version, but 256GB is more than enough, just for streaming TV and Movies. Plus feel so safe knowing that Linux is in control.

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Looks exactly like the sort thing I’d like a pair of to run as my VMware ESX / vSphere home lab…

I used to run my Gigabyte Brix as a “home theatre PC” with Kodi running on top of Ubuntu - but Smart TV, Apple TV and Chromecast take care of that (I don’t have access to the main TV anyway - my daughters are Apple users [eldest daughter has her 2nd interview for a job at an Apple store on Friday] and neither they or my missus would tolerate my interference :smiley: )…

Bang for buck, AMD has it over Intel (I’m mainly talking about core count) - but - Ryzen (or even AMD) support is anything but “easy” with ESX.

I’m not to fussed on VM performance - but - I’d like something in my home lab that’s more “enterprisey” than Oracle VirtualBox, and my old ESX lab was 2 Lenovo M series desktops (2 cores 2 threads, and 16 GB RAM booting off compact flash) and I couldn’t do vSphere 'cause I didn’t have another spare machine with 16 GB RAM or any DNS servers (vSphere assumes all your hosts are going to have local DNS entries, and doesn’t even support basic rudimentary things like fudging DNS with /etc/hosts). And without vSphere or vCenter you can’t do things like vMotion, or test stuff like SRM.

I’ve also used the same “kit” to run Oracle VM for x86 (it’s not VirtualBox, it’s a more enterprisey solution that runs Xen hypervisors on Oracle Linux) and ProxMox. But neither of those are what the “industry’s” using, i.e. when they’re not running loads in AWS or Azure, they’re “on-prem” with VMware…

Ideally? Something low power (like a NUC or mini-PC), with maybe 12-16 cores, and 32 GB RAM (and two of them).

Not sure I can justify, even to myself, that sort of expense (i.e. the extra core counts and RAM would make it up to around $1500 AUD by the time I was done).

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