Wolfe's Den


This website is hosted on both a DIY Solar Server and a renewably powered server host with a custom DNS server to 'switch' in case of downtime.

Solar server

Mainly, this server is being hosted on a Solar Server which uses a closed loop power system to power the server. The system is located on Cooper's Island in Bermuda.

For information on how to make a solar server please refer to Manuals to be updated shortly and some useful resources such as this.

The Ol' Reliable!

This server is running on an old stripped down enclosed Thinkpad. The solar panel charges the laptop battery and the external Ampere Lite LiPO4 battery. In sunny Bermuda, this means that the panel is more than enough to both run the hardware and charge the devices. Occasionally during hurrican season, it may go offline.

It may also go off offline if the batteries are depleted to 20%, this can happen under heavy usage.

Custom DNS 'Switching' Server

While for a long while, I took the approach that if it went offline then shucks it went offline, after being reprimanded by colleagues on the idiosyncratic nature of that attitude, I have coded a custom DNS server which pings the solar server once every few hours. Should it notice the solar server no longer responds, it switches my at home DNS server to point the URL to my externally hosted static site.

I recommend no-one does this.

This was by far the most frustrating project I have ever undertaken. If for some reason you hate yourself to that extent. You can start your journey here and when I get around to solving the mild PTSD I received from that journey, you should also find the manual here as well.

Why a static site?

Static sites are much better for the environment. Dynamic sites(aka most of the current web), fetch data from a database to dynamically generate pages each time a user does something like a link on the page or revisit the homepage — which is hugely wasteful since most of the time, you don't really need anything new. With a static site the content is already there, much like using your file browser to look for a certain folder/file. It's technically a misnomer since Static websites are also dynamic, it's just that 'dynamic websites' make a new request for each usage. You might ask okay, so what? It uses a bit more computing power but what's the big deal? Well more computing power requires more energy. The energy used already on a single site is already significant but multiply the power difference of the hundreds of millions websites that exist on the web currently. The web is quickly becoming a major use of energy and this is no small factor.

So in short, static sites are better for the environment and lowkey easier to work with in my opinion.