server in hot environment 100F+ degrees - garage - AVS Forum
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Think it would be possible to build a server that could operate safely in a 100+ degree environment. I'd like to build a 20 drive server solution and put it in my garage. Possible? There are days in the summer where it gets very hot where I live. It doesn't need to be fast, just reliable with no data loss.

Thanks
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:18 AM
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IMO, your bigger problem is the temperature fluctuation.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:30 AM
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I wouldn't do that. You are going to be over 20 F above room temperature during those days. Your system will not be able to cool itself down to typical temperatures. It might work, but I wouldn't trust it with my data.

I just went through a server cooling project a week ago. http://www.avsforum.com/t/1465130/server-closet-cooling

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Old 04-01-2013, 11:53 AM
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The only way I see this as feasible is having an insane amount of fans blowing air through the server, essentially keeping everything inside at ambient temperature

Quality Assurance Manager, Ceton Corporation
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:24 PM
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GEOTHERMAL WATERCOOLING

It will be cheaper to just put it in the house where it belongs.
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Old 04-01-2013, 12:50 PM
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Placing it in the garage not only exposes it to extreme temperatures but also more dirt and dust than it would see indoors. That is simply too hostile of an environment for a server. You'll probably end up replacing a lot of drives on a regular basis.
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:05 PM
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Not a reliable idea unless everything was exchanging heat to somewhere cooler than the garage http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/124677-how-to-cool-a-pc-with-toilet-water
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:32 PM
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Just focusing on temperature, you may want to look at Dell's 12th Gen servers and their Fresh Air Cooling initiative.

http://en.community.dell.com/dell-groups/small-business/b/smb/archive/2012/05/08/fresh-air-technology-with-dell-poweredge-12th-generation-servers-infographic.aspx

The servers are certified to operate up to a max temperature of 113 degrees F. Personally, I have experience pushing their much older PowerEdge 1750 and 1850 servers with much hotter temperature in a former work situation. I took a temperature measurement at the back of the racks and got a reading of around 130+ degrees F. The servers were running 24/7/365 and only one server developed a failure in one of its power supplies. Other than that, everything kept running.
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Old 04-01-2013, 10:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mo0sic View Post

Think it would be possible to build a server that could operate safely in a 100+ degree environment. I'd like to build a 20 drive server solution and put it in my garage. Possible? There are days in the summer where it gets very hot where I live. It doesn't need to be fast, just reliable with no data loss.

Thanks

Keeping the drives cool enough is going to be the problem, with 20 spindles active you have to consider how to get rid of all this waste heat.
Consumer desktop and most enterprise nearline drives are validated/tested to 60C ambient only (140F).

I suggest starting with a smaller array of 3-4 drives and see how hot it gets in the garage and how much effort it would be to cool it to below 60C
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tong Chia View Post

Keeping the drives cool enough is going to be the problem, with 20 spindles active you have to consider how to get rid of all this waste heat.
Consumer desktop and most enterprise nearline drives are validated/tested to 60C ambient only (140F).

I suggest starting with a smaller array of 3-4 drives and see how hot it gets in the garage and how much effort it would be to cool it to below 60C

It's not going to be as bad as you think. I have three servers running in my server room along with a bunch of network equipment. I would guess that I have about 30 hard drives running and the heat output isn't too bad.
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Old 04-02-2013, 06:12 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tong Chia View Post

Keeping the drives cool enough is going to be the problem, with 20 spindles active you have to consider how to get rid of all this waste heat.
Consumer desktop and most enterprise nearline drives are validated/tested to 60C ambient only (140F).

I suggest starting with a smaller array of 3-4 drives and see how hot it gets in the garage and how much effort it would be to cool it to below 60C

I think his 100 degrees is F, meaning he still has 20F headroom. I would still caution against it...hard drives can get hot if they are used a lot.
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