What is it?
It’s a RaspberryPi inside a IP67 water and dust proof case from StormCase (Pelican took then over), with a 1TB 2.5” WD drive, 3G Telstra USB Modem, coupled to an N capable Access Point that runs from 12 Volts via a custom build 5V Switchmode Power Supply.
What does it do?
It acts as a Wireless Access Point with 3G internet access, but also has a 1TB 2.5” Drive that contains shares in both Samba (windows) and NFS so it can act like our home network even when we are not at home. The idea for this came about when we went on holidays and the kids and the missus wanted to dump their cameras and write up blog posts and diaries of the trip but we had no 3G coverage.
This way the kids can write files to the drive as if it was our home server, then once the network is available rsync will synchronise the content using sshfs over the 3G USB dongle. The LCD screen shows any errors and that the time is correct. The only problem I have come across so far is that if you don’t start the stormcloud in network coverage it can’t set the correct time for the “fake hardware clock” using ntp. For this I use an external USB GPS to get the correct time if I need to start it outside of coverage.
So it runs apache web server so the kids can see that there posts and pictures are working properly before upload, and also run other in-house web apps on the internal intranet inside the box.
I'll do more of a write up here soon!