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Multipurpose home server gains power, features

May 24, 2007 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 3 views

Quad Micro Works is prepping a second release of its Linux-based multipurpose home network, gateway, and server appliance. The new “Square One Personal Server” will integrate an 802.11g access point, along with a 4-port router and file, print, and Web servers.

Quad said the new Square One servers will have double the processor speed and memory, while adding faster gigabit Ethernet uplink and LAN interfaces. Also new is storage expansion via eSATA ports as well as USB, and the device will use a SATA drive internally, in capacities of 320GB or 500GB (or zero, for customers wishing to supply their own).

The Square One appliance will also benefit from updated software, Quad said. The Apache/PHP/MySQL stack will be updated, while added services reportedly will include sftp (secure FTP), WebDAV (drag-and-drop browser file management), qmail (a lightweight mail transport agent), and VPN (virtual private networking).

Additionally, the device will be the “first shipping network storage device” to include the Casgle Broadcatcher client, apparently a program that, in conjunction with a commercial service, offers unattended downloading of large files. Casgle's service reportedly includes “unlimited free access” to a hundred video and audio channels, from broadcasters said to include CNN, MTV, National Geographic, and others. The Broadcatcher client offers a web interface, where users can subscribe to channels for automated scheduled downloads, Quad said.

Another Linux-based home server, the favorably-reviewed Debian-based Bubba, offers similar background file downloading capabilities based on bit torrent.

Square One's currently-shipping device

The currently-shipping Square One device measures 7.9 inches square, and is 2.4 inches tall (200 x 200 x 62mm). It weighs 2.9 pounds (1.3kg), and requires a 4-amp, 12-Volt power supply. Its maximal power draw is said to be 24 Watts.

Quad Micro's second-generation Square One will add WiFi
(Click to enlarge)

The first-generation device is based on an unspecified SoC (system-on-chip) powered by an ARM922T processor core. It has 64MB of SDRAM and boots from just 4MB of flash ROM. I/O includes separate WAN and DMZ (de-militarized zone) ports, along with a built-in 4-port LAN switch. A “network card reader” affords access to storage and memory cards to “any PC on the LAN,” the company said.

The Square One also appears to come with a variety of custom software aimed at helping users easily host their own blogs, file servers, forums, back up services, and so on.


Quad said its second-generation Square One will ship this quarter. Pricing was not disclosed.

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