My son wanted to run a Minecraft Server. I had a old, wheezing, 2006 Macbook, so I set up a Minecraft server for him and his friends.
Then I decided to do a little adventure.
The Macbook wasn’t going to live long, and I knew I wanted him to do some more learning on computing. So we went the SoC route and got the 1Gb Hackberry for $75 or so bucks. Dual core 1.2 Ghz ARM with 1 GB RAM, HDMI, 2 USB, Wifi, Bluetooth, and an SD reader.
These things come with onboard Android so you can just plug them in, hook up the HDMI and keyboard/mouse, and all works. And it did. It was very unnerving, the paucity of actual learning required. My son made a case out of Legos, I hooked up the Wifi, and the Google Play store actually had an Android version of the Minecraft Server.
Too easy. Fortunately the Android “server” was fatally flawed. It stopped if you did anything else in Android. So we flashed Linaro Desktop onto an SD card and went down the rabbit hole.
And it worked. The first time. I just had to fix the wireless networking. After that, a flurry of apt-gets later, and I had a Minecraft server running and Python installed. 10k Pystones makes it 1/4th the speed of my 2006 Macbook. But hey, it’s in a case made out of Legos!