The Raspberry Pi is a single board computer—built down to a price but capable of high performance and performing the kind of tasks you would more readily associate with a server farm or data center.
Today, self-hosting web-facing applications and services is a popular hobby, and this article will showcase some of the best ones to deploy on a later-model Raspberry Pi.
Why Use a Raspberry Pi for Self-Hosting?
You can build a home server on practically any computer hardware built in the last 30 years, but the Raspberry Pi has the advantage of a super-low power draw. Even the recent Raspberry Pi 4B (the model we would recommend for most of these projects) consumes under 3W when idling, and around 7W under load—that’s about the same as a single energy-saving lightbulb.
The 15-year-old gaming PC you pull out of storage to act as a server likely consumes upwards of 600W. As servers are usually left on 24/7, this represents huge electricity savings.
Performance-wise, the Raspberry Pi 4B is a beast of a machine in miniature form, and boasts a quad-core Cortex-A72 64-bit processor running at 1.5GHz (if you don’t overclock it), Gigabit Ethernet, four USB ports, and built-in RAM between 1GB and 8GB. Although prices are currently high for Raspberry Pi hardware, under normal circumstances, they retail for around $35.
In our opinion, few machines represent better value for money than the Raspberry Pi, and here are some of the best self-hosted projects you can run on them.