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/ssdcg/ - Small Scale Data Centers General
Discuss small scale datacenters.
>What IS a datacenter?
A data center is a building, dedicated space within a building, or a group of buildings used to house computer systems and associated components.
Since IT operations are crucial for business continuity, it generally includes redundant or backup components and infrastructure for power supply, data communication connections, environmental controls (e.g. air conditioning, fire suppression) and various security devices.
>Why should I have a datacenter?
It's fun and can be profitable, and is overall very valuable to society if done well.
>homeserver vs datacenter
homeserver is a very broad term that lately has been getting very cringeworthy, with any Redditor calling their RPI and a router a homeserver, and you can't be mad since they aren't wrong. A home server is a computing server located in a private residence providing services to other devices inside or outside the household through a home network or the Internet. So how are they different? Well there are a couple of places you could draw the line on, starting with the datacenter tier standards:
A Tier 1 data center has a single path for power and cooling and few, if any, redundant and backup components. It has an expected uptime of 99.671% (28.8 hours of downtime annually).
A Tier 2 data center has a single path for power and cooling and some redundant and backup components. It has an expected uptime of 99.741% (22 hours of downtime annually).
A Tier 3 data center has multiple paths for power and cooling and systems in place to update and maintain it without taking it offline. It has an expected uptime of 99.982% (1.6 hours of downtime annually).
A Tier 4 data center is built to be completely fault tolerant and has redundancy for every component. It has an expected uptime of 99.995% (26.3 minutes of downtime annually).
You see even the first standard is very hard to achieve and most homeservers don't fall under it. A great start is dedicating a whole room with controlled temperature and it's own dedicated internet connection with high bandwidth (1gbit is plenty).
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I did pretty good for it being the first OP didn't I, anyways, for maximum larpi- I mean for maximum reliability there are some factors that are often overlooked, like humidity and ... COSMIC RAYS.
Humidity is pretty simple really, in fact your aircon might already take care of it without you even knowing, relative humidity should be around 45-55%, air conditioners lower the humidity in the air, and you can raise it by just placing water containers VERY carefully, the water will slowly release water particles in the air though I haven't tested how effective this process can be.
Temperature, the recommended temperature is anywhere between 18 and 27 degrees celsius, a lower temperature puts less strain in the server fans, PSU and other components, keeping a nice temperature is REALLY important and the datacenter should be designed around keeping a nice constant temperature, insulation helps you save electricity and make your AC work easier.
Who cares about sound retard, get hearing protection if you spend too much time close to the servers.
COSMIC RAYS might not be THAT likely to hit your server making it crash, but it's a nice tip to remember they are out there.
>After Seymour Cray first built the Cray-1 supercomputer, he gave Los Alamos National Laboratory a six-month free trial. But during that half-year, a funny thing happened: The computer experienced 152 unattributable memory errors. Later, researchers would learn that cosmic-ray neutrons can slam into processor parts, corrupting their data. The higher you are, and the bigger your computers, the more significant a problem this is.
So building your datacenter underground and plastering the walls with aluminium plates can be a positive practice!
Interesting, after making more research on what a DC actually is, I found this:
Telcordia GR-3160, NEBS Requirements for Telecommunications Data Center Equipment and Spaces, provides guidelines for data center spaces within telecommunications networks, and environmental requirements for the equipment intended for installation in those spaces. These criteria were developed jointly by Telcordia and industry representatives. They may be applied to data center spaces housing data processing or Information Technology (IT) equipment. The equipment may be used to:
>Operate and manage a carrier's telecommunication network
>Provide data center based applications directly to the carrier's customers
>Provide hosted applications for a third party to provide services to their customers
>Provide a combination of these and similar data center applications
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The next step on turning your homeserver room into a datacenter, is a UPS or uninterrumped power supply, they make the electricity "cleaner" before it reaches your servers CPUs and in the case of a power failure they keep your servers ON without you having to do anything, a 1500VA UPS that costs around U$D800 can keep a 150W server ON for 2 straight hours, or in the case that you have 2 150W servers, it can keep them both ON for 1 hour, you can see how useful this is.
But there is a limit, I don't exactly know why but UPS have a minimum load capacity that goes up with its size, this means you can't run your 50W server ON for 5 hours on a 1500VA UPS since the UPS won't work unless there is a draw of around 100W, this is annoying really, and the only alternative I see for long-term reliable power in the case of a power failure is a diesel powered generator, they are expensive, and even more if you want them to turn on automatically.
What I think you could do if in a budget is, in the case of a power failure, the UPS will turn on, and you have a few hours or minutes to run and get the generator running, sounds annoying and you won't be able to do this if you are out of your property, this will cause some downtime.
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