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My Home Network

Who else does this? In my network, I have come up with a little scenario, where I get to play the Greek god Zeus. In my fantasy network world, I have named the router in my network after my brother Hades. As such, any computer that resides behind that router, I have decided to be named after a Greek or Roman god. As such, being Zeus, I get to thrust these gods into hell at my own whim. However, I am careful to name my gods after the hardware that they are occupying:

  • Achilles: My sever. He serves the needs of HTTP, Jabber, IMAP, SSH, IRC and many others. In Greek mythology, he was the hero of the Trojan War. This server provides me will all the services I need on my network. However, as strong as Achilles was, he had a weakness. His heel proved to be his demise. This server, as great as it is, is merely a Pentium 3 700 with 384MB RAM. It's weak compared to todays hardware. He is running Ubuntu Dapper Drake 6.06.1 LTS
  • Athena: My wife's laptop. In Greek mythology, she was the goddess of wisdom and philosophy. My wife has been nothing but wisdom in our marriage, and I figured the name was very fitting. The laptop is an Apple iBook G4, thus entirely white. Greek gods and goddesses are typically depicted wearing white robes. When traveling with me to work, she is renamed to "athena2" as a computer on the network already exists with that hostname. She is running Mac OS X Tiger.
  • Hades: The NAT firewall and 4-port wireless router. I chose the name Hades initially, as he is the Greek god of the underworld. In modern times, we usually refer to Hades as a place, rather that the god, meaning hell. Because of the firewall, I thought it appropriate to name it Hades representing the lake of fire and brimstone. After naming the router, I found it fun to thrust these great Greek gods into hell for my amusement. It has stuck since. The router is a Linksys WRT54G running OpenWRT firmware.
  • Hercules: My faithful laptop. He goes wherever I go doing what I need done. In Greek mythology, he was the son of Zeus, and the greatest of the Greek heroes. He was the strongest hardware that I had at the time of his purchase. I chose the Roman equivalent, rather than the Greek spelling Heracles, as it is a laptop with modified HP hardware. He has since had hardware problems, and will serve me as my IRC and database server, as well as a backup for Achilles. He is currently running Ubuntu Feisty Fawn 7.04, although, he will become the second Ubuntu Dapper Drake 6.06.1 LTS in hell.
  • Janus: This is my desktop. In Roman mythology, Janus was a god with two heads. He was the god of gates, doorways, beginnings and endings. Because my desktop dual-boots between Windows XP (for my wife) and Ubuntu Feisty Fawn 7.04, I found the Roman god to be fitting. Other than the dual nature of the desktop, not much is shared with the character of Janus (maybe my wife will "end" her Windows XP need, and "begin" with Ubuntu in her computing (that's stretching it)).
  • Kratos: My new laptop (arriving Monday). I chose Kratos for a two-fold reason. First, Kratos was one of the Titans, son of Styx and Pallas. He is the god of strength and power. This new laptop (I chose the T61), is loaded with top-of-the-line hardware, full of processing power, and plenty of RAM. Kratos later became the right hand man of Zeus, doing Zeus' bidding in exact obedience. This laptop will do my every bidding going wherever I go. His main operating system is still undetermined at this point.

Below is an image depicting the network. Now tell me, does anyone else go to these lengths when naming their boxes? I would be curious of other naming schemes if they exist.


{ 56 } Comments

  1. Gadren | August 19, 2007 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Awesome -- I name my notebook Hephaestus, the ultimate Greek geek.

  2. Adam | August 19, 2007 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    I name mine after D&D 3.5 classes.
    This gets to be a problem when I run out of base classes and have to figure out which prestige ones to use, though :/

  3. Samat Jain | August 19, 2007 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    Nice diagram! What did you use to create it? I find myself running Microsoft Visio inside a virtual machine, and I really rather be using something open-source..

  4. Eric | August 19, 2007 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    We went with a dragon theme here at out house. We took them from several different mythologies and some fiction.

  5. Mike | August 19, 2007 at 11:55 am | Permalink


    Any advice on setting up an old eMachine with Ubuntu 7.04 for a server?

    Let us know how new ThinkPad works with Ubuntu- I have an old X-20 and a newer T-42 that I am ready to convert over to Ubuntu.

  6. Dave | August 19, 2007 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    Beowulf is my newish laptop (Pentium-M) and Grendel is my big, slow, noisy server (Pentium II). They live in harmony though, running Ubuntu 7.04 desktop/server πŸ™‚

  7. mindcorrosive | August 19, 2007 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    The boxes that lie around me have names after astronomy phenomena: my laptop is dubbed "aurora" (brand-new Acer, sporting Gutsy alpha, Slackware 12 and XP), the desktop is "solarflare", and my parent's machine is "nebula" (with the peculiar Win 2000 / Feisty combination). After all, it's much better than naming them "my_computer", "my_other_computer", and "my_parents_computer_which_was_once_mine". You got the idea πŸ™‚

  8. Kelly Clowers | August 19, 2007 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    I name my machines after important computer people - Dennis, Ken, Brian and Joy are my current machines.

    I pick the names more or less randomly from a list.

  9. James | August 19, 2007 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    I was naming all the computers on my network after characters and objects in Homestar Runner. So far we've got Strongbad, Marzipan, Rectangle (Yes, it's a laptop), and PomPom.

    Breaking from the theme is my personal laptop. It was going to get some great name like "Gizmo", "Widget", or "Wombat", but then I found out that my university's ResNet requires a boring FirstLast naming scheme.

  10. Bogomips | August 19, 2007 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    I'm also curious to know what program you used to generate the network layout diagram. I've been looking for years for a decent open source alternative to Visio and always came up short.

    And while you're at it let us know how Linux behaves on the T61. Like you I'm also wavering between a Macbook and a Thinkpad next time I upgrade.

    As for the naming scheme I use at home, I draw the names from the islands of Earthsea.

  11. Erik | August 19, 2007 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    I'm using stars as names. For instance this machine is Arcturus. My laptop bears the name of Ross154. The girlfriends laptop is Cassiopeia and so on.

    I originally came up with this scheme after endless hours of playing the old atari game Elite II

  12. Piotr | August 19, 2007 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    The computer network of the Mathematics Institute at the University of Wroclaw for a long time was following the Roman gods scheme: the main server was called hera, workstations: ares and zeus. Then something went wrong and by a quantum jump suddenly Greek mithology appeared: the main server of the students' network was named chaos (which in fact quite accurately describes its usual state). Currently there is a chaos concerning the naming system...

  13. Luke | August 19, 2007 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    I usually go with Middle Earth names. Small networks get names from the fellowship. Slightly bigger ones get dwarf names from the hobbit.

    And if it's a really large network I name them with random elven names from sillmarilion or other sources. Hard to run out of names this way. πŸ™‚

  14. Zak | August 19, 2007 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    Daedalus and Icarus, my ancient desktop and newer laptop respectively. Both running feisty. Hermod; my phone. Cerberus; my router. Networked laser printer is 'Homer'. Three more desktops were Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.

  15. whiteinge | August 19, 2007 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

    Great post. For me it's Aliens characters. Ellen, Newt, Hicks, Hudson, etc.

  16. Zak | August 19, 2007 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    oops. Cerberus is my ps3. Hades is my router.

  17. Aaron | August 19, 2007 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    @Samat Jain and Bogomips- I used Gimp to draw the diagram, however, Dia is a *great* alternative to Visio. aptitude install dia.

    @Garden- Perfect! πŸ™‚

    @Adam- Definitely a true nerd.

    @Mike- It all depends on what you want to do with it.

    @Erik- Using stars is an interesting idea. Haven't heard of that one before.

    @Luke- Yeah. Middle Earth seems to be very popular with networks.

  18. Rusty | August 19, 2007 at 1:42 pm | Permalink

    My Laptops have historically gotten 'cat' names, desktops have gotten 'human' or 'character' names. Of late my laptops have gotten names related to their manufacturer. Every device does get a name, and I'm running a dns server that I update with those devices IP and name relationships.

  19. Michael | August 19, 2007 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    My boxes don't have any uniform naming scheme. My desktop is "dylan" after the musician, my laptop "zoidberg" after the Futurama character, mythtv box is the Sanskrit word "navras" (Wikipedia/Google for its significance", and my WRT54GL is "valkyrie" after the Norse dieties.

  20. Bastian | August 19, 2007 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Dia is definitely not an alternative to Visio. Just look at the amazing set of black-and-white clip arts:

    when you want do draw high quality network diagrams, you better use inkscape or even gimp.

  21. Loye Young | August 19, 2007 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    I have four favorite naming schemes, which have provided a wealth of names:

    --Characters from the Simpsons
    --American Presidents
    --Shakesperean Characters
    --Roman Catholic Popes (canonized saints being the next natural progression)

    Other possible schemes:
    --States of the United States
    --Biblical characters

  22. Weeber | August 19, 2007 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    I choose important figures of the Age of Enlightenment, being Diderot, Montesquieu, Voltaire and Liebniz picked up at the moment.

  23. l | August 19, 2007 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    No real "scheme", usually based on favorite books or songs:
    * rudy : "a message to you, rudy", the specials
    * bum : "dharma bums", Jack Kerouac
    * walrus : "i am the walrus", the beatles
    * bombshell : "bombshell", operation ivy

    it's a little more tricky for the name of my laptop, it must follow our office rules: a city with a 'e' as a second letter (new-york, perth, beijing, ...). So my laptop is named megara after this

  24. Frank | August 19, 2007 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    I use characters and placenames from the Melanie Rawn series of books, Dragon Token. So they are rohan, sioned, skybowl, cunaxa, faradhi, kazander, azhrei, azhdeen, and others.

    I use Dia and/or OOo for drawings; both have their pros and cons.

    I currently have 8 hard-wired ports in the house (5 downstairs, 3 upstairs) and no ports in my office so just a lot of cables running across the floor behind furniture (this was on purpose). I have a total of four routers, two of them are reflashed WRT54GL's and the others are D-Link and Netgear. My office is on a gigabit switch, while the other ports in the house are 10/100. My network has 5 subnets on 3 VLANs with two enabled wireless APs, one acting as a hotspot (when guests need connectivity) and one for private use by my wife and me. The network-attached print server and the TiVo Series2 are not particularly well-protected at the moment.

    I'm currently in the process of revamping it and drawing new diagrams as the current ones have become a little out-dated. πŸ™‚

  25. Trevor Creech | August 19, 2007 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

    I name my gadgets after Veggie Tales characters.

  26. Lasse Havelund | August 19, 2007 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    I name my boxes after Star Wars systems and planets, which means I currently have alderaan, kashyyyk and yavin. (I keep them lowercase).

  27. Timucin Kizilay | August 19, 2007 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    I'm using female character names from Star Trek series and some of my computers are named some star names.

  28. Joao | August 19, 2007 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    On my old job I named my over restrictive proxy (blocking all non technical websites) Mordor. Everyone hated the little thing πŸ™‚

  29. Derek Buranen | August 19, 2007 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

    I'm amused by all the comments thus far. The urge to share your computer naming conventions is wonderful. While I wouldn't divulge so openly, it's intriguing to view your diagram.

    This brings me to echo a further call of how you did this. Was it an open source tool? inkscape? dia? other? Please share!

  30. Alex | August 19, 2007 at 11:45 pm | Permalink

    My computers are named after various starships from Star Trek:
    Router: Scimitar
    Server: Excelsior
    Work-PC: Enterprise
    Laptop: Voyager
    Also some VMs like Intrepid, Defiant and so on.

  31. Markus | August 20, 2007 at 12:24 am | Permalink


    where can I find these icons?

    Greeting Markus

  32. Timo Zimmermann | August 20, 2007 at 3:17 am | Permalink

    I don't have such a nice graph - just listed my machines, even if it is not completely up to date.

    I named them after characters from RagnarΓΆk (Korean manga), Workstations / Notebooks = female, servers = current name of "gods", rest = old name of "gods"

  33. Kelsin | August 20, 2007 at 5:13 am | Permalink

    At work we use the classic Simpson names. I've seen screenshots of someone using characters from Arrested Development which I think is awesome. I've been using the character names from Scrubs since many are small (jd, turk, eliot, cox, tod, ted, etc).

  34. Aaron | August 20, 2007 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    @Weeber- Very nice.

    @Joao- All the more reason for employees to tunnel their web traffic through SSH. So for me, Mordor would be a welcomed friend. πŸ™‚

    @Derek Buranen- What should I be worried about? Even if I published the IP addresses, this doesn't give you any information that a cracker who entered the network couldn't easily get. By the way, I used the Gimp for the diagram.

    @Markus- I took them from a Gnome icon toolset found on The firewall icon, I Googled.

  35. Clint Savage | August 20, 2007 at 6:34 am | Permalink

    What about unique pies? We named ours things like rhubarb, mud, cottage etc. They even relate (somewhat) to their names. Cottage - printer; mud - firewall.



  36. Paul Bartell | August 20, 2007 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    I name my boxes after characters in books. my server is caspian, and my router is sparkie. my other computers havent been names, although i think artemis is next

  37. CedriCD | August 20, 2007 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    I use characters names From the Belgariad and he Mallorean, from David Eddings. My desktop's name is Silk, my main server Ul, etc.

  38. Etaoin Shrdlu | August 20, 2007 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Apart from one old laptop named "giger" (black and gnarly), I've stuck with scientists: feynman, newton, kelvin.

    Oh, and my old ipaq running Familiar? The temperamental but invaluable "ziggy". I claim my geek points now!

  39. Joseph Hall | August 20, 2007 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    I used to use Muppets, but I've moved onto chefs (Alton, Giada, etc). And because I use a lot of external hard drives, I label those after spices (cumin, coriander, etc).

  40. Joao | August 20, 2007 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

    @ Aaron All the more reason for employees to tunnel their web traffic through SSH. So for me, Mordor would be a welcomed friend. πŸ™‚
    Yes I know, but more than half of the coders became adicts to Orkut, so it had to be done. And they are windows programmers, so tunneling was well beyond their dreams πŸ™‚

  41. MooUK | August 21, 2007 at 6:18 am | Permalink

    I currently use the latin words for the Seven Deadly Sins. I don't have many computers so this suits me fine. My desktop is superbia/pride (but changes to gula/gluttony if I boot it up under windows). My ancient laptop - and I really do mean ancient; it's a Thinkpad 390 with a dead battery - is acedia/sloth.

  42. Amy Rose | August 21, 2007 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    Haha, I'm so boring. I just have 2 computers right now, and they're named djb-laptop and djb-desktop. My laptop is a 2003 desktop replacement model--Pentium 4 2.4 GHz and 512 MB RAM, upgraded hard drive and wifi (it was a free gift last Christmas--I really lucked out with this thing), and my desktop is an old Pentium II 333 MHz computer with 160 MB RAM and 40 GB hard drive.

    I am the one in charge of the network here--my mom put me in charge because she has no idea what she's doing with the router. I have my two computers set up for static DHCP--the desktop is and the laptop is .91. The others on the network get handed an IP from 100. (I find it more convenient to refer to my computers by IP rather than by name...)

  43. Amy Rose | August 21, 2007 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    Oh, and I use Kubuntu Feisty on both computers, since KDE runs beautifully on both of them.

  44. Eric Lake | August 21, 2007 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

    I have started using the character names from StarGate and StarGate Atlantis.

  45. Aaron | August 21, 2007 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

    @Joao- Anything within the realm of security is beyond a Windows programmer. πŸ™‚

    @MooUK- Interesting. Very interesting.

    @Amy Rose- KDE runs that well on that old of hardware?? I would think that you would be running Xfce or fvwm to take advantage of resources.

  46. menachem | August 21, 2007 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    My network naming scheme is based on the Bulbous Bouffant skit from the Vestibules.

    My network is bouffant, my computers are eskimo, gazebo, and mukluk.

  47. Terence Simpson | August 23, 2007 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    I have 5 computers and 1 router in my network, they are;
    Router - "Kami"
    Main Server/Desktop - "Goku"
    Desktop - "Gohan"
    (My) Laptop - "Goten"
    Laptop 2 - "Vegita"
    Laptop 3 - "Freza" (Evil win laptop)
    (I loves me some DragonBall Z)

  48. TuxGirl | August 23, 2007 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    i've been going for the ancient egyptian theme. Boxes are amon-re, sekhmet and osiris. normal printer is papyrus, with the photo printer being hieroglyph. I've also got a little wheeled robot that i've been meaning to play with. his name is going to be scarab. πŸ™‚

  49. AndrΓ©s | August 23, 2007 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    I name my whole network (I run a carrier) based on greek mythology.

    Generally speaking routers are male and switches are female, don't ask why :p

  50. Pham Nuwen | August 23, 2007 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    I use metals, and rocks. ie. gold, silver, jade, opal, ruby, etc...

  51. Joel | August 28, 2007 at 5:38 am | Permalink

    We use cartoon characters. My favourite is a bridged packet filter called "casper" - after the friendly ghost... (it has no IP, hence not visible from the outside world... geddit? geddit?)

  52. Jason McCandless | August 28, 2007 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    It seems the ancient greek naming scheme is quite common. I mostly went with it because my name is Jason.

    I call my old desktop Zeus, my new one Hercules (due to an ignorance of the proper spelling). My vaio laptop is called Poseidon and my macbook pro is called Odysseus.

    In a research lab where I once worked, they used a naming scheme based on wines.

  53. peter | October 8, 2007 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

    The diagram looks like very beautiful. I need add only a fax in my home network diagram.

  54. Russell Frank | December 1, 2007 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

    Why not name the router Charon, since he ferried souls across the river Styx into Hades / hell / the underworld / etc?

    I believe it makes a nice metaphor for port forwarding.

  55. sam | February 11, 2009 at 10:52 pm | Permalink

    this web is da best

  56. IT Support Guys | March 22, 2010 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    I'm loving all the ideas for naming conventions. I just started a new network and decided to go with the names of the world's geniuses... only problem now is the spelling on some πŸ˜‰

{ 5 } Trackbacks

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  2. [...] Naming Schemes: With my post about my home network, and the Greek play that I conduct with the computers, a lot of comments came in about what others [...]

  3. [...] by Aaron’s postings about his and others network naming schemes I finally decided to drop the boring names in my own network [...]

  4. [...] to add to my diabolical scheme of throwing Greek gods into hell, Helios (should be obvious why this name): welcome to [...]

  5. Ideas for Hostnames | February 16, 2011 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

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