Freeside was started back in 1997 with a decommissioned Sun box and a frustration of the Universities strict single OS network. Over the years Freeside has been very volatile with many people trying to keep it going through out the years. The latest revive was started by a group of 2015 year students and whilst this latest attempt has been certainly rocky and we have not achieved much of what we set out to do, it has been fun to have a place with like minded people. Personally I have learnt a lot from Freeside that would have not had the opportunity otherwise.
Putting the servers to sleep.
Towards the end of 2016 we were told by the department that we could not run the AC unit in the building and we was advised not to run any of our own servers either, this of course was a big problem for us as Freeside has always been about hosting our own physical servers. Andrew Hancock came up with the proposition of hosting our servers in the “cloud” after a meeting we decided that this is a compromise we would have to make.
Unfortunately the University has been through a restructure and had decided that 203 would be better off as something else. Thanks to some help from the awesome people in the CS department we managed to get some a new space for Freeside; the old CS Library! (Room 300) which will soon become the only Linux Lab on Campus.
The new start.
We are not allowed to host our own production hardware but the room has the advantage of being much more secure with card access required to enter the room, 7 modern PCs and the room also has a much more modern feel.
What will Freeside become now?
Freeside will mostly become a linux and UNIX Lab, we will continue to host our own services in the cloud but will be focusing more on development of Linux software and most importantly of all, having fun! We have already got a few fun projects planned such as building our own 3D printer and possibly a drone. We will also be focusing on hosting regular socials and hope to work alongside the Hull University Computer Science Society.
Where are we now?
Well currently… nowhere. We hope to get access to the new room soon so we can start providing students with some UNIXy goodness.
You can still keep up to date with our antics on our facebook. Our primary communications have been moved over to Discord which you can join here:
I hope to keep making more frequent blog posts and I’ll be spending the next few weeks updating the website and giving access to the forum.
Thanks to all the students that have kept Freeside going throughout the years, you know who you are!
And a big shout-out to Andrew Hancock who has been constantly been putting up with Freeside and ensuring that we stay alive.