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Dell Thin Clients -> Cheap Pi Replacement


Well-known member
Folks might already know about this but I found out a few weeks ago Dell thin clients, such as the Wyse 5070, are going for like $50 on eBay. I say that in a Reddit thread (I think on /r/3dprinting).

In my case, I bought one to see how it would fare against a Pi 400 for a lightweight Linux desktop (for when I need to boot my main workstation into Windows but still want to have Linux within reach) rather than a replacement for my printer Pis. I have Raspberry and Orange Pi's for that still (plus a Vision 2 on the way woohoo!) But for folks that can't get a Pi and don't want to mess with Aliexpress and such, these could be a pretty good deal!

Many come with onboard eMMC which should be plenty for Octoprint. In my case, I tried using an external USB drive as that's what I was doing on my Pi400. I ended up getting a SATA M.2 drive (the 5070 does not support nVME only SATA over M.2) which made a big difference. I also have an 8GB RAM kit coming in the mail since 4GB for Linux Mint is on the low side.

I really wanted the Pi400 to work as a lightweight desktop, and it does pretty well for everything except JavaScript (which unfortunately is behind a lot of apps I use, such as Discord and Whalebird). Pi400 even ran FreeCAD and PrusaSlicer without any real issues. It was great! But couldn't quite get there as a full desktop replacement.

Wyse 5070 seems to work well for that and should be more than enough to power several printers I supect. It should also be a pretty fantastic OctoPi box. Especially if running more than one printer from it, it could be a really good option!

ArsTechnica let the world know about these so I expected the price to skyrocket. So far though, I'm still seeing several for $50 US.