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How to Choose the Right Data Center Server Rack
Server racks and cabinets are the skeletal system of the data center, providing a support structure, and protecting IT equipment. Choosing the right data center server rack for each use case is vitally important.
Although server racks and cabinets come in “standard” sizes and configurations, there are many variables to consider. The server rack should have sufficient capacity for the IT equipment with additional space for any anticipated expansion, but it should allow easy access to the equipment for maintenance, troubleshooting, and provide adequate airflow to dissipate heat generated by the equipment.
Then there are the server rack components, including PDU mounting rails, cable management systems, and other essentials. In many cases, data center operators must purchase these components separately or face higher costs and longer lead times for custom server cabinets.
Data center server racks that meet all requirements “out of the box” can save considerable time and money and keep projects on track. They fit seamlessly into the data center and reduce the total cost of ownership.
Make Sure The Size Is Right
The selection process begins with an understanding of the equipment to be mounted in the enclosure. If it’s a new implementation, IT managers should obtain the physical specifications of the equipment. In a migration or consolidation project, an audit of the existing equipment will be required.
The interior height of a data center cabinet and the height of IT equipment are measured in “rack units” equivalent to 1.75 inches (44.45mm). Data center cabinets are commonly 42U, but a wide range of sizes are available on the market.
Of course, there are two other dimensions. Most data center server racks have an external width of 24 inches (600mm), but the depth can vary. Server racks designed for high-density environments often have an outside depth of 36 inches (914.40mm). This may not accommodate more powerful servers and leave room for PDUs and cable management.
Other Features to Look for
The specified dimensions of a data center server rack are only part of the story. The interior layout of the server cabinet affects access to the IT equipment. For example, PDU mounting rails that aren’t flush with the side panels can make it difficult to slide equipment out of the server rack for maintenance. Similarly, cable management systems should be designed in such a way that they don’t impede access. Built-in cable management features make the best use of space and minimize the need to purchase and install additional components.
As server rack densities increase, airflow management is especially important. Data center server racks need adequate ventilation, including integrated fans and perforated doors. IT teams should also ensure that blanking panels are installed over empty equipment bays and that there are no gaps between mounting rails and side panels. These steps prevent the mixing of chilled intake air and hot exhaust air.
Enconnex DC Series Server Cabinets
Enconnex took all of these factors into consideration when designing its DC Series server cabinets. Our 48U server cabinets are 48 inches deep to accommodate larger equipment. Built to our exacting standards, they have a stationary weight capacity of 3,300 pounds and a rolling weight capacity of 2,650 pounds.
Best of all, the DC Series comes standard with commonly requested upgrades, including PDU mounting rails, cable management slots, and improved airflow management. This eliminates considerable time and effort spent retrofitting “standard” server cabinets.
With Enconnex DC Series server cabinets, you get the features you need in a server cabinet that’s 45 percent cheaper than competitive products with short lead times for delivery. Let us help you select the right data center server rack to precisely meet your needs and requirements.