18U Open Frame Server Rack (part 1)

My last post was about the 6U network cabinet I was using up until recently, I found a great price on an adjustable depth 18U open frame rack that was going to fit everything that I’m currently using and still have space to expand going forward. So, what’s changed since the last update? Well, quite a bit! The biggest item is a Motorola Quantar P25 repeater and some items to tidy up the ethernet cabling by including a 48-port patch panel to go with the 48-port PoE+ switch and a 1U cable management.  Most of the items that were previously in the cabinet are still on the 1U shelf but have been cable tied in place.   

So why did I go from using a network cabinet to an open frame rack? Well two reasons, the first being that I ran out of space in the 6U cabinet! also, the depth of the cabinet couldn’t take devices greater than 350mm in depth, and once I moved over to a 48 port PoE+ switch, it would not fit inside the cabinet as it’s 420mm depth. The other reason was heat, even though there’s plenty of ventilation slots you need a fan to move the warm air out of the cabinet. So I solved the heat issue by moving to an open frame rack as there is no places for warm air to pool and over time raise the temperature of the devices in the rack.

Naturally, this is still a work in progress so it will change as I add or remove items. 🙂

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Home Network Reshuffle (yes again!)

So around this time last year I embarked upon the task to tidy up the home networking equipment and consolidate it into a cabinet with the idea to reduce the noise and physical appearance. Well it’s not finished as it’s developed into a continuous evolving process. I was soon to discover that buying only a 6U cabinet was not such a great idea, as this has limited the future growth as more items are added to service the growing needs. In its current iteration there’s 3x 1U devices taking up half of the space with a 1U shelf to keep airflow around the items that are not in a rack configuration.

I kind of think that I would have been better getting something closer to a half height server rack (around 20U-25U) that is mounted on castors so it can be moved easily when accessing the rear or sides. I’d still prefer to have it in a cabinet form factor but with sufficient air cooling without needing to use multiple fans thus creating a network cabinet oven! (the 6U cabinet is the dimensions of a family sized microwave oven)

So after running the setup the way it’s pictured above I found that I had a heat trap because the HP ProCurve 2910al-48G-PoE+ is actually too deep to fit in the cabinet so I had to remove the back cover so that it would fit. The heat trap was caused by the power strip (there’s 2) that is mounted on the rear supports so the ProCurve 2910al was effectively resting on the RB3011 and the power strip. So I lowered the RB3011 down by one cage nut to allow the heat to vent. This also allows the cabling to then go in between making it much tidier.

So as can be seen from the above picture the right hand side cabling is much more organised than it was. The mAP Lite that’s dangling from the switch was stuck on the Cisco 1841 rack ear, but there’s an issue with them when stuck on a metal surface there’s some interaction between an inductor and the magnetic field from the small magnets inside the case, this results in the ethernet not being able to negotiate the full speed of 100mb but only managing a 10mb connection with lots of errors. So having it hang like this, away from being stuck directly to a metal surface its operating as expected.

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Trump Memes

Here’s a few memes of the defeated Donald Trump…

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Home Network Redesign

So after many years (almost ten) of having all my networking hardware sitting on top of my old IBM eServer, it was finally time to tidy it up and reduce some ambient fan noise in the room. So the motivation for this was really the latter part, as there’s a few things in my computer/radio room that have fans running. The loudest one was from the HP 2524 ProCurve switch that has been the backbone of my home network until I recently retired it and replaced it with a fanless TP-Link 24 port managed switch. The benefit of the new switch is its speed (1Gb/100Mb/10Mb) where the HP is slower at only 100Mb/10Mb.

So here’s what I have so far (top to bottom) 24 port patch pannel, TP-Link 24 port managed switch, HP 2524 ProCurve (retired) Various Raspberry Pi’s, power board and 5v PSU and an original OpenSpot.

Eventually I’ll around to feeding the remainder of the house (ongoing 15 year round to it job!)

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Welcome Midnight

It’s been almost a month since we adopted Midnight from Ten Lives Cat Shelter. She’s an adorable little girl (1 year old) who loves cuddles and to play with her toys. She is a very gentle natured cat that has that cheeky side where she will tap you with a paw (no claws though) or double bat you cheeks if you get down low to her.

One of the main differences we are doing with Midnight is that she is an indoor only cat. We do not want a repeat of whatever happened to Maisie to ever happen again.

So no doubt there will be many posts to come about Midnight and the us hoomins (humans) 😉

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Typical Neglect!

Well I’m not real good with keeping things updated on this blog these days, it’s one of those things that you can fully immerse yourself into or neglect it (I seem to do the latter) When I started this blog on January 1st 2009 it was more of a learning platform for me to gain a better understanding of how to configure everything from installing Linux, the initial installation was using Ubuntu server edition configured as a LAMP service (Linux, Apache, Mysql & PHP)

I started to tinker with all this after I had a brief stay in hospital for a course of antibiotics (staphylococcus infection) and Clare had bought me a Linux Magazine that had a feature on WordPress. After reading the article over a few times (I was in hospital for a week) I thought to myself that I could setup something like this for myself. I had plenty of old computers suited for the task. So once I was home I set to task sorting the old hardware to build the best out of what was available. What I had was by no means great (I forget the exact specifications) but it worked.

My employer was in the process of replacing the main server along with several computers used through out and once this was completed the old IBM eServer 220 was offered to me as it was only going to e-waste for recycling. Naturally I took it thinking that this is just what I needed for running my own blog. I wasn’t happy with the PC I’d made up so this server would be ideal. Once I got the server home and disassembled it to get rid of years of dust bunny build up! I noticed that it was capable of supporting two CPU’s and there was a spare hard drive bay available.

So we skip forward to now, and what has changed? I no longer host the server here at home (saves $99 per quarter on electricity) the server is still sitting in the corner! But only gets powered up to source the configuration or similar. I don’t have to make sure that the host software is updated or worry if/when the hardware is going to fail. I miss that part, but it’s much cheaper outsourcing that side of things.

Anyway that’s where things are at…

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Time to face facts

As much as I don’t want to admit defeat, reality is slapping me hard in the face. It’s been three months since our much loved little girl Maisie didn’t come home.

Your disappearance has had such a devastating impact on all of us (Clare, Nicholas & myself) I miss you Maisie, I love you even more than ever, and I’ll never stop looking for you…

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42 Days

As I’ve previously posted on here that our much loved moggie Maisie is missing, I can’t believe that it’s been 42 days since I last cuddled her and told her how much I love her and that she’s my best friend, whilst giving her a pat and kisses on her head (and listening to her purr)

Yes there’s a massive void in my life that will take time to adjust too. There’s not a moment that goes by that I’m thinking of you. I’ve gone through pretty much all the process of grief, but I still feel there’s hope that you will turn up like nothing has happened! (wishful thinking I know)

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Still Nothing of Maisie 😢

It’s now been 16 days since Maisie disappeared. We’ve done two letterbox drops of the street and I’ve been searching the local tracks close to our house and I’ve found nothing. No clumps of fur on the ground, no blood trails, it’s just like she vanished.

Although I will never stop looking for Maisie, it’s obvious that something or someone has taken or trapped her. As hard as it is to admit, I don’t believe that Maisie is going to return…

Maisie will certainly be missed and I don’t believe that I’ll ever have such a strong bond with another cat…

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Maisie is Missing 😢

6am Tuesday morning Maisie was let outside and has not returned home. This is very unusual behaviour as she usually is back inside no later than 12pm. For food and a sleep. I’m devastated that she’s not come home.

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