In early 2020, recent semiconductor startup Ampere announced the Altra, an ultra-dense 80-core ARM64 CPU targeted at cloud computing environments. Patrick Kennedy of ServeTheHome covered the release with an excellent in-depth article last year which I highly recommend reading. In mid-2020, Oracle became the first cloud provider to add the Ampere Altra to their cloud computing lineup. And in early 2021, Oracle took the unusual step of adding the Altra A1 VMs to their “Always Free” tier, allowing anyone to create ARM64 VMs with up to 4 cores and 24GB of RAM at no cost.
The low risk and low-to-no budget of a home lab environment often results in security taking a back seat. Services are sometimes left open and unguarded in the name of “Just Make It Work”. Home labs aside, the complexity of running even a halfway-decent security infrastructure makes doing so a non-starter even in many small business environments. As a result, the largest and most easily exploitable gap you’re bound to find in many home labs and small networks is unencrypted traffic.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, as my home lab and local area network have matured over the years, both I and my family have come to depend on the assortment of services that I run within the four walls of my home. We begin to take things for granted. For instance, we put all of our important files - recipes, documents, photos, home videos, etc. - on “the server”. The contents of said server are invaluable to us, economically and emotionally.
Now that I’ve shared some of my physical infrastructure in my home lab, I want to share the service topology for the specific services I run at home for home automation, secure storage, and even this website. Services As you can see, a number of the specific services I run are focused around infrastructure and system management. Services such as Grafana and Kibana are essential for monitoring and observability for my entire home lab environment.
On December 2nd, a surprise announcement made waves in the Kubernetes Twitter-sphere - that after the upcoming 1.20 release, Docker would be officially deprecated. Oh no! Due to widespread confusion over what “Docker” means in specific contexts, many people panicked - myself included. Because of its sheer popularity, Docker has become synonymous with “containers”. However, Docker is really an entire ecosystem of container tools and processes, including building and shipping container images.