What is the difference between a server rack and server cabinet?

A server rack is a frame into which 19inch rackmount servers, storage and associated networking devices are mounted or ‘rack mounted’. The frame may be 2 or 4-pillar in design. Equipment suitable for a server rack is termed ‘rack mount’ or designed for ‘rack mounting’. A server rack with side panels and a front and rear door assembly can be called a server cabinet. The front door may be solid metal, perforated hex mesh or glass. The rear door is typically solid or perforated hex mesh. The doors and side panels do not just make the server cabinet more secure but also assist air flow management. Server racks and cabinets are defined by their height in ‘U’ where 1U=45mm and their width and depth with typical sizes being 600, 800, 1000 and 1200mm.

Do server cabinets always need cooling?

If your cabinets are only partially populated and has perforated ventilation holes in the front and rear, you may not need additional cooling fan kits. Server manufacturers typically recommend a minimum perforation factor for the doors of the cabinets that would be used to house their servers and this is typically from 63% upwards; to allow adequate air flow from front to rear.

What is the best cooling method for my server racks?

Server racks are designed for front air intake and rear cabinet exit. Cool or air conditioned air should be drawn into the front of the rack by fans within the servers themselves or within the server racks and this then exits as warm air out of the rear of the cabinet. In a data hall server racks are typically positioned in rows and the rows positioned so that the fronts face each to optimise cool air and hot air flows. This is a basic for of hot-aisle/cold-aisle containment. The server racks may themselves be within a separate containment known as a hot-aisle/cold-aisle container. For some server racks we can also offer rear cooling doors to help collect the hot exhaust air. The cooling doors fit onto the rear of the cabinets and use chilled water pipes within the rear door. We can also supply additional cabinet fans for extra cooling capacity.

Do you supply semi-knock down kits or just completely made-up rack cabinets?

We can supply either completely assembled cabinets or semi-knock down kits to allow for ease of transportation and logistics on-site. Our logistics team will follow the project plan (previously agreed) to deliver your server racks and enclosures to site and position them. Where the cabinets are supplied as semi-knock down kits, our installations team can assemble these and move into position for you.

How much do typical server cabinets weigh?

Most server rack cabinets support up to 300Kg of internal weight. This will depend on the type of cabinet and its height (measure in ‘U’) and whether the rack cabinet itself is designed for light or heavy-usage.