OpenBrick-M N2930 - Building an Application Server

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OpenBrick-M

The OpenBrick-M N2930 is a small form factor (SFF) desktop based on the Intel 1.83Ghz Celeron N2930 processor. It can be expanded from four (4) Gigabit Ethernet to eight (8). Two hard drives can be installed for RAID 1 Disk mirror.

Introduction

The OpenBrick-M N2930 is a small form factor (SFF) desktop based on the Intel 1.83Ghz Celeron N2930 processor. The dimension  is about 7.6 inch (W) x 8.3" (L) x 2.5" (H), weighs less than 6lbs and runs fanless in the base configuration. We will attempt to explain some of the expendable configurations and to suggest appropriate applications. There will be a product configuration with all of the available options at the end for purchasing.

The barebone model of the OpenBrick-N N2930 is available here and the firewall appliance.

Due to its small-form factor and four (4) built-in Gigabit Ethernet ports, the OpenBrick-M is usually deployed as a network appliance, such as firewall or gateway, see the Mars IIB Celeron OpenBrick-M Firewall. Additional advanced functionality in areas of networking and telecommunications can be expanded in the OpenBrick-M N2930 through PCI Express. We will demonstrates on how to achieve eight (8) Gigabit Etherner ports through a PCIe x1 quad-port NIC card.

Even with its small size desktop platform, the OpenBrick-M can accomodate up to two (2) 2.5" hard drives. A RAID 1 (disk mirror) can be implemented at the OS level to achieve some confidences in high availability and fault-tolerant. A NAS (Network Attached Storage) system like FreeNAS or OpenMediaVault (OMV) can be buitt on a Raid 1 Disk Mirror system.

Specifications of the OpenBrick-M N2930

The OpenBrick-M N2930 is based on the Jetway systemboard NF9HB-N2930. Following are the specifications:

oprnbrick-m

  1. Fanless 1.83 Ghz Intel N2930 (4C/4T, CPU Mark=1661)
    • Very Low-Power: 7.5W TDP
    • See Intel Website for CPU specifications.
  2. Jetway NF9HB-N2930 motherboard
    • Memory: 2 x -SODIMM, Max 8GB, DDR3L. 
    • Four (4) x Intel i211AT Gigabit Ethernet Ports.
    • Expansion slot: 1 x PCIe 2.0 x1. 
    • Two (2) x SATA 3Gb/s ports. One (1) x mSATA (Full size)
    • LAN Bypass
    • See the User Manual for motherboard specifications.
  3. SFF (Small Form Factor) OpenBrick-M Case with dimensions:  7.6"  x 8.3" x 2.5" (192mmx210mmx62mm). Weight about 6 lbs.
    • 12V 5A (60W) Powerbrick is included!
  4. Back Panel I/O
    • 12V DC-in jack
    • VGA
    • Serial RS-232 port
    • 1 x USB3.0 and 1 x  USB 2.0
    • Four (4) x RJ-45 LAN
  5. LAN Bypass - a fault-tolerance feature that protects essential communications in the event of power outage. WAN1 and LAN1 ports will be bridged together when the power runs out. Such failure could be completely transparent to the network. See the user manualfor more details!
    • By default, LAN Bypass is turned off since most of Hacom's products are firewalls. It would shut off network communication to protect the inside network from outside accesses without the protection of a network security device. A gateway device might prefer to turn on Lan Bypass to ensure uninterrupted Internet access to the local network.

openbrick-m backpanel

Expansion via PCI Express

The Jetway NF9HB has two (2) usable expansion slots in the OpenBrick-M case:

  1. One (1) Full-size Mini-PCIe slot
    • The mini-PCIe is normally used for a Wireless/WiFi cards. There are three open slots on the back panel of the OpenBrick-M to accomodate up to three (3) RP-SMA antennas. We normally only carry the Atheros AR9285 (802.11b/g) due to compatibility with pfSense. Other OSes like Windows 10 or recent Linux distributions may work with more 802.11abgn or 802.11ac devices.
  2. One (1) PCIe 2.0 x1 slot
    • This section will show the expansion of the OpenBrick-M N2930 to eight (8) Gigabit Ethernet ports.

 The OpenBrick-M N2930 has a PCIe x1 slot for expansion.  The back panel has an opening for a PCI card. We will need a flexible PCIe x1 riser card to connect them together. In the following we will add four (4) more Gigabit Ethernet for a total of eight (8) LAN ports.

  1. Quad-Port: 4 x Intel i210-IT Gigabit Ethernet
    • Lex Computech E214B Nic card with 4 x i210 Gigabit Ethernet ports.
  2. Flexible PCI Express x1 riser cable

quad-port NIC and riser card

openbric-m with 8 Gigabit Ethernet

Using the same procedure, we can expand the functionality of the OpenBrick-M N2930 with any PCIe x1 cards. For example, we can build a small PBX with multiple analog FXO/FXS ports since most of the Telephony cards are PCIe x1. Industral control is another application, where multiple serial ports can be added through the PCIe x1 slot.

RAID 1 Disk Mirror

The OpenBrick-M N2930 has two SATA2 ports. The case can mount two 2.5inch laptop hard drives. Using both hard drives, we can build a RAID 1 Disk Mirror system with some confidence of high availability and fault-tolerant. The following pictures show:

  1. A HDD carrier to be mounted at the top of the OpenBrick-M case.
  2. A top view of an open OpenBrick-M with dual hard drive mounted.

OpenBrick-M HDD Bracket

OpenBric-m with Dual HDDs

A Raid 1 Disk Mirror should be set up using the OS, like Linux's fakeraid or FreeBSD's geomirror. A NAS (Network Attached Storage) system like FreeNAS or OpenMediaVault (OMV) should be buitt on a Raid 1 Disk Mirror system.

Normally, the OpenBrick-M N2930 is running fanless. However, witht the addition of one or two hard drives, we recommend the built-in system fan to be connected and turned on for some convection cooling.

Notes on the Configuration of Options

  1. There are some hidden options, which depend on other options. For example, the Mini-PCIe Expansion, the PCIe Expansion and the Storage options won't show up until the Memory option has been selected with more than 0GB.
  2. If you want the OS that is not listed in the Software option, please contact support@hacom.net and we will try our best to accomodate.  Most Linux distributions like Arch Linux, Mint, OpenSuse can be easily installed as well as some of the BSD-like OSes.
  3. If you order a dual HDD system with software installation and would like a Raid 1 Disk Mirror system, please contact support@hacom.net to request the configuration.
  4. The OpenBrick-M has a full-size mSATA slot, which is shared with the second SATA port. Please contact support@hacom.net if you desire that option.

 

Weight: 6 lb
Price: $449.99
$449.99
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Catalog: 
SKU: OpenBrick-M JNF9HB-2930
Specifications
Intel Celeron N2930
# of Cores
 4
# of Threads
 4
Processor Base Frequency
 1.83Ghz
TDP  7.5W
Graphic Processor  Intel HD Grapghics
CPU Mark
 1661
Jetway NF9HB-N2930 Motherboard
Chipset
- Integrated with Intel® Bay Trail-D/M/I series
System Memory - 2 x SODIMM, Max 8GB, DDR3L
Onboard LAN - 4 x Intel i211AT Gigabit Ethernet
Onboard SATA II
- 2 x SATA 3Gb/s ports
- 1 x mSATA (Full size)
Expansion Slots - 1 x PCIe 2.0 x1
Back Panel I/O - 12V DC-in Jack
- VGA
- Serial Port
- 1 x USB 3.0 (blue)
- 1 x USB 2.0
- 4 x RJ-45 LAN
Form factor -  mini-ITX
Software Compatibility
Windows - Windows 7, 8, 10
Linux Distribution
- Arch
- CentOS
- Debian
- openSUSE
- Ubuntu
- Contact Tech Support for other distibutions
BSD - FreebSD
- OpenBSD
Firewall Distribution - IPCop
- OpnSense
- pfSense
-
Contact Tech Support for other firewall distibutions
Telephony - Asterisk
- FreePBX
- FreeSwitch
- Elastix
- Check with Tech Support for Telephony cards
Others - Contact tech support at support@hacom.net
Support & Warranty

Support Information

  • Send us e-mail on support questions. E-mail: support@hacom.net
  • Contact us by phone: 567-859-9422
  • Submit a question via a web form.
  • We will asnwers pre-sale and support questions within a business day

Warranty

  • One-Year Limited Warranty.

Additional Information