Acquired an Optiplex 9010 (i7 3770, 8GB, 128GB SSD). Best way forward?

As the title states, picked up some good hardware for $160 CAD but want to get it initialized in the most future-proof way.

Home Assistant history: I went from an Rpi 1 to an Rpi 3 to an HP mediasmart server (EX495, with upgraded CPU and RAM), back to the Rpi 3 (when the ex495 crapped out), and then to a VM on my main laptop, finally to an old Asrock ION 330 that I pulled from the depths of my junk pile.

Now I have grabbed this little gem and want to set it up to handle everything: Plex/Kodi server, NZBget, Radarr, Sonarr, Home Assistant, and anything else I would like centralized.

The problem is that I have read about people using Proxmox, or ubuntu server with docker (what I am currently doing with the Asrock), NUC images, straight hassio loaded directly on the SSD, etc, etc

What is the best way to set this up that will prevent me from wanting to try something else in the near future? And what are the benefits/drawbacks of each scenario?

I can never leave good enough alone and always have to mess with it, so which method provides the least risk of me having to format everything and start from scratch again?

I had a nice thing going with the ex495 and this machine should be substantially better, I just want to set it up in a way that provides freedom to expand in the future while keeping things simple to maintain.

I’m running a Dell Optiplex 990 currently, after using a NUC for a while.

I’ve made this guide, works flawlessly for what you want to do. I use many of the same programs you do in Docker, along side Works very well. If you can copy paste, and follow this guide, you’ll be done in 30mins.


I’ve seen you refer to that howto a few times @kanga_who, but today is the first time I have read it. Bravo.

Thanks @nickrout.

Lately, there seems to be so many people asking about alternative installs on NUC’s and PC’s, so I thought it a good idea to make a copy paste guide to try and help people. I started putting it together from my own instructions I had made for myself, through trial and error and what worked.

If you have any feedback on changes that could be made to simplify or correct anything, please let me know.

wait does the copy paste guide from not work for everybody ? its worked fine for me on 4 different types of systems…

Thanks for the response! Can you elaborate on how your method would be better than the one described by JuanM?

Just curious as I am not sure either way.

@CountParadox the guide from @kanga_who is basically the same as that, but adds a few extra bits, like portainer. It is also very succinct and easy to follow.


@CountParadox The one I have put together incorporates that page, as well as a bunch of other info that helps, extra code to run etc. Take a look at it when you have some time, I welcome any suggestions for changes, or extra info.

I think it essentially achieves the same result @Geoff_Brown. I just have it all in a PDF that you can copy paste.

Because IMHO video is not the way to document these things, but hey not everyone agrees with that sentiment.

Plus you can follow @kanga_who’s guide and complete the task in the time it took to watch Juan’s video.

He does supply a written guide, but I know what you mean. Honestly, I am a huge tinkerer, but am pretty unexperienced and do not keep great logs about what I try/do, so it makes it easier when people lay out the different options for me and explain why (sometimes I don’t know what exactly I want to do until people explain their reasons for why they do what they do).

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Just having a quick skim over the written guide you linked, it looks more or less the same. I’ve included steps for applying the same method for an RPi as well.

Like I said earlier, my guide is just a formalized version of my own instructions that I follow for a new install, with extra info added for new comers to make it easier for them to get going. I know it works 100% of the time.

One thing to note is that you recommend using Ubuntu Server as the base OS. As far as I know that won’t work if someone wants to run any media server software (like Kodi) that requires a desktop environment to run it.

I ran into that on my NUC. Even running Debian desktop Kodi still wouldn’t run unless the NUC had a monitor plugged into it on boot since if not it wouldn’t initialize the graphics card. I ended up having to buy a dummy HDMI dongle so I could still run the NUC headless and have Kodi function.

Also to note - the latest Raspbian images don’t come with SSH enabled out of the box “for security reasons”. You need to add that ability to the SD card prior to inserting it into the RPi for the first time. Even then it will only allow you to SSH into the RPi one time. If you reboot the RPi before you set up SSH permanently using Raspi-config you won’t be able to SSH again unless you force that into the SD card on another PC.

kodi would be a client application but plex media server should work on linux, no? I use the plexkodiconnect plugin to keep my library synced across devices as I find kodi plays nicer than plex with my lights automations.

Yes. Plex Media Server works beautifully on Linux.

Why. Anyone would be running kodi on their hass machine or server is beyond me.

Why anyone runs plex is also beyond me. it’s only real value is if you want/need to transcode your media, however any decent kodi client (ie the machine that actually plays the media and plugs into your tv) will play anything you chuck at it.

Because it’s simple. It works. I can share my media with friends and family. It’s super simple for my wife to use. She opens the app on her phone, selects what she wants, and hits the PLAY ON <DEVICENAME>. This works on ANY TV in the house.

I used to run XBMC (back before KODI), and every update I had to fight the stupid database issues and upgrades…I moved to PLEX and never had to deal with that again. Watched status is synced flawlessly across devices. Hate it all you want, but it’s been working great for years for me. I don’t have to manage anything but the server.


kodi works great on linux too and acts as a media server to other DLNA clients on my network.

Why would i not? HA itself uses a lot less resources than the NUC provides and is always on. So why not use the extra capabilities of the NUC to provide an always on media server as well?

I run Plex, so was not aware that Kodi has this issue. Good feedback, something I might add into the instructions.

I am thinking of separating out the Ubuntu and Raspbian instructions, so I might add this in as a specific Raspbian step. i.e. making the ssh blank file and copy/pasting to the SD card.

Yes, I run a Plex server, works perfectly.

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Kodi is not a media server. It is a media player.