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Cooling Challenges an Issue In Rackspace Outage

miller60 (554835) writes | more than 6 years ago

The Internet 1

miller60 writes "If your data center's cooling system fails, how long do you have before your servers overheat? The shrinking window for recovery from a grid power outage appears to be an issue in Monday night's downtime for some customers of Rackspace, which has historically been among the most reliable hosting providers. The company's Dallas data center lost power when a traffic accident damaged a nearby power transformer. There were difficulties getting the chillers fully back online (it's not clear if this was equipment issues or subsequent power bumps) and temperatures rose in the data center, forcing Rackspace to take customer servers offline to protect the equipment. A recent study found that a data center running at 5 kilowatts per server cabinet may experience a thermal shutdown in as little as three minutes during a power outage. The short recovery window from cooling outages has been a hot topic in discussions of data center energy efficiency. One strategy being actively debated is raising the temperature set point in the data center, which trims power bills but may create a less forgiving environment in a cooling outage."
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Redundancy and constant monitoring (1)

TheMongelloid (1059350) | more than 6 years ago | (#21348619)

I work for a data center as I have seen many others do as well. Here we have 6 Hitec generators to power just our second floor (approx 50,000 square feet). Only 3 are needed. These generators are normally powered buy grid power that comes into the facility from the north and the south. Should there be any bump in power we have stores of batteries that take the load for 5-50 seconds until the generators switch to desiel. Temperature and power are monitored 24/7 by the NOC. The main point that needs to be made here is that powerlosses of any kind are bad for business so don't have them. This happens from constant monitoring, proper maintance for your redundant power, and foresight to plan for the unplanned ( if that makes any sense). It seems to me that the failure in Dallas was caused by failure to keep maintance up or poor planning for eventual outcomes.
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