My Homelab Journey


Below you’re going to see my different homelabs.

I started doing what I now called Homelabing back in 2010 and man, it’s been a ride looking at old images. I’ll try to remember what things were/did but no promises. 🙂

Homelab 1: The Parent’s House

This was my workspace back at my parent’s house during my teenage years. It was very much the reason for the big power bill! I was lucky when I was starting off because my family and friends were very supportive and would gift me with PC related stuff. I’ll do a post sometime about my 1st PC I built/Modded back in the early times of my life, but here is a quick summary:

The servers here are:

1 Linux router (I don’t remember what it ran)
Windows (something) running usenet clients
Halo and Counter-Strike 1.6 zombie horde servers.

Homelab 2: The Apartment Complex

When I moved out of my parent’s place and into my 1st apartment, I built my second homelab. As a surprise to no one the power bill was still very high. So high in fact the power company sent someone out to check my meter and replaced it because my power bill was too much compared to everyone else.

the buildout for this one was:

Dual ASA 5505s
3 Cisco Switch 2500’s
Old Terminal Server
VGA KVM ( I Loved that KVM)
Cisco Pix (Small and large one)
Cisco 500 Router
(Do you think I list Networking yet) 🙂
Cisco 2500 Routers
LInux Server
Juniper Something
An IBM E Series with 64GB of ram.
The Black Tower. Red Queen ran Freenas

Homelab 3: Yolocolo V0

When I decided to move to Boston I had to get rid of a lot of stuff (all I had for the move was a trailer and a car full of stuff). But I knew I still wanted to do something like a lab when I got there.

Below is what I had for a while before getting money saved up to start YoloColo. I plan to do a larger write-up on this box later.

Homelab 4: Yolocolo V1: The Cloud

I moved everything service wise into AWS. my job was moving to AWS and the best way to learn how to use AWS  was to deploy stuff there. I moved Nextcloud, mumble, and a few game servers into AWS. This let me really learn how to use AWS and gave me my first intro into Terraform and Ansible.

Amazon has now started offering quantum computing on AWS Cloud ...

Homelab 5: Yolocolo V2: The Offsite

The cloud got expensive and I started to really miss networking and server hardware. Since running any REAL network hardware in my apartment would blow a fuse in a shared living space I decided to bite the bullet and get colo. I found a great place called EndOffice in Somerville MA. If you need colo at a good price, these guys/gals are amazing.

I started off with:

1 APC that ran Pfsense
1 Cisco 3500
1 Dell with 40GB of ram for ESXI.

Over the years I added more hosts and upgraded the networking. I moved from Pfsense to Meraki (Never again) and installed an ASA for remote testing.
I added 2 Dell r720’s and 1 DL180 G6 as a Storage server for Files.

The lab was changing monthly. I was very happy to be in a Colo where I had access 24/7 to swap things when needed. I was there almost weekly doing more changes or upgrades.

Homelab 6: Yolocolo V3: The Onsite V1

After a while I wanted to bring things closer to home (but not actually home because my girlfriend would kill me over the power bill). So I moved Yolocolo to my makerspace.