A rack server is one of the most useful items in IT hardware, allowing you to store multiple servers in a space-saving rack structure.
A rack and stack seems like a basic procedure that is performed often in server rooms, but if it is done without proper planning, future headaches may be on the horizon. When you mount your server units into a rack server, you create a network for your company that is scalable and manageable. Most organizations have dozens of rack servers, and some even have hundreds or more, all of them part of the same corporate network, and working to keep data operations humming.
It’s important to remember that doing some advance planning, and following some basic procedures and best practices, can make for a much easier and more successful experience in the data center. Depending on the type of rack, it will be different, but typically go (from top down):
Why Are Rack Servers Popular?
Rack servers can offer you many clear advantages over other server configurations, including:
Consolidated server and network control: Not only can you put all your server units in one place, but most rack servers offer the ability to install a network switch. And that’s an enormous time saver. Network managers can simply connect all the servers into a single switch to quickly bring the servers online.
Scalability: Need to upgrade? Need to add more server units? It’s not a problem with rack servers. Most units simply slide in the slot and are secured with screws. Reprogramming a unit or adding a new one can be a simple matter of getting out your screwdriver
Convenience: Racks can be stored horizontally, with most racks allowing servers to be locked into a low, space-saving profile. Rack servers are easy to move and easy to position in tight spaces, even when server racks are stacked. However, it’s important to remember that the more server units get added to your server rack, the heavier, warmer and more power-intensive it will be. It’s important to have your rack server in a cool, low-dust environment. And keep in mind, the more server units you have, the more provisions you need to make for cooling equipment.
Compact: Each rack server fits neatly into a 19-inch by 1.75-inch enclosure. Each of those 1.75 inch-high rack units are abbreviated as U, with a typical full-size rack cage being 42U, and hardware typically measured in heights of 1U, 2U, 3U and 4U.
Your rack server configuration is one of the most important IT management decisions you’ll make. Applying great care and planning to your rack and stack project will ensure efficient installation and prevent problems that can affect future performance.
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