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Fanless Mini-PC / Thin Client / Desk-Top-Box for FLOSS hacking

Question asked by gruss on Oct 2, 2012
Latest reply on Oct 4, 2012 by gruss

I'm looking for a 'cheap' fanless miniature all-in-one PC that I can do some FLOSS hacking on. Aesthetics are not too important - I don't what to spend double the price for a pretty case. What I am looking for is:

- Decent CPU performance - It does not need to be a speed demon - I have a main PC for heavy lifting, but it does have to be smooth and responsive for most UI tasks

  - Hi-Definition video decoding

  - USB, SATA, 100Mb (1Gb preferred) Ethernet, HDMI / DVI (Dual output preferred), S/PDIF output


What I'm looking for is a device I can use as a thin-client (remote X-Terminal) and as a media player (streaming hi-definition content over the network from a file server) which is 100% FLOSS from the boot loader to the applications. There are a lot of cheap ARM based devices which use U-Boot and Linux, but most (if not all) use proprietary binary blobs for their graphics drivers. I know AMD provide excellent FLOSS support for their graphics drivers, as well as good support for coreboot, so I'm thinking my best chance is with an AMD based solution.


I'm already intimately familiar with U-Boot (currently I'm the x86 maintainer) and know Linux well enough to be comfortable so this will be a 'dive right in' project.


Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated