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Not all racks are created equal . . . and not all servers will fit in all racks (why?)

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Tool-less shelf Install

May 14th, 2014

Here is the installation of a tool-less sliding shelf into a 4Post square hole rack:

The shelf used for this install can be found at RackSolutions.


Ask Katrina- 2Post Universal Rails

April 30th, 2014

In this segment of Ask Katrina, she answers FAQ about 2Post Universal Rails:

Question 1: I ordered the 3UKIT-009 and I received 2 boxes. I don’t understand what the box with the black pieces is for?

Answer: Here is our 3UKIT-009. The black pieces that the customer is referring to are our Conversion brackets that come with our 2U and 3U size options, to support the extra weight. First, install the conversion bracket pieces to the same side to both of the rack uprights. For Flush Mount install both on the back of the 2Post Rack. For Center Mount install both on the front of the 2Post Rack. Then install the rails into the conversion brackets and rack just as if this was a 4Post rack.

3UKIT-009 http://www.racksolutions.com/2-post-rack-rails.html

Question 2: I have a Dell Poweredge R200 and I want to center mount it into a 2Post Rack but I don’t have a rail kit. Do you have a rail kit for this situation?

Answer: Our universal rails work will all rack mountable equipment. This is a 1U server so you would mount this with our 1UKIT-009.

1UKIT-009 http://www.racksolutions.com/2-post-rack-rails.html

Question 3: I have a 4U server that I want to center mount into my 2Post rack. Do you have any options for a server that large?

Answer: As long as your 4U server does not exceed 200 lbs, our 3UKIT-009 will work. The choices of different rail kits are mainly based on how much your server weighs. Our 1U has a 45lb weight capacity, 2U has a 75lb weight capacity and our 3U has a 200lb weight capacity.

3UKIT-009 http://www.racksolutions.com/2-post-rack-rails.html

If you have any technical questions like the ones Katrina has answered today please let us know. You can call send us an email (info@server-racks.com) or use technical support chat at racksolutions.com. All of the items that have been discussed today can be found at racksolutions.com.


Cage nut Installation

April 16th, 2014

Here is the installation of a cage nut into a square hole rack:

For more info about cage nuts see Define:Cagenut? The tool used for the installation is the Cage Nut Tool from RackSolutions.

Ask Katrina- Adapter Brackets

April 9th, 2014

In this segment of Ask Katrina, she answers FAQ about Adapter Brackets:

Question 1 My rails won’t work in my 4Post rack because the rails are too short. Do you have anything that would allow them to work?

Answer: For demonstration we have a 2UBRK-200-FULL. We do offer several different depths of brackets that will work depending on your situation. In this particular case we can use the 2.00” bracket to fill the space between the back of the rail and the back of the rack.

2UBRK-200-FULL http://www.racksolutions.com/2u-adapter-brackets.html

Question 2 The rails that came with my server don’t work because my rack has threaded holes and my rails require a square hole. Do you have any options?

Answer: For this problem you can use our 2UBRK-059-FULL. The reason that we use this bracket is because the depth of our rack is correct but we need to convert our holes from threaded to square. For this situation we can use our smallest bracket. Using this bracket will NOT add extra depth to your rack making your rails stick out of back.

2UBRK-059-FULL http://www.racksolutions.com/2u-adapter-brackets.html

Question 3 The rails that I am using are to long for this rack. Do you have anything to extend my rails?

Answer: Let’s say that your rail is 2 inches to long. Again we would use the 2UBRK-200-FULL with our 2U rail kit. This part allows your rail kit to function properly by providing the extra length for your rack.

2UBRK-200-FULL http://www.racksolutions.com/2u-adapter-brackets.html

If you have any technical questions like the ones Katrina has answered today please let us know. You can call send us an email or use technical support chat at racksolutions.com. All of the items that have been discussed today can be found at racksolutions.com.

Dell Optiplex 790 SFF and Optiplex 9010 SFF Wall Mount

March 14th, 2014

Server-Racks was asked if there are any wall mounting options for the Dell Optiplex 790 SFF and Optiplex 9010 SFF? Rack Solutions has wall mount products for this purpose. The part numbers are 104-2324 (for tilting monitor) and 104-2323 (for fixed monitor). Below is a video showing the installation.

This is the Dell Optiplex Small Form Factor wall mount from RackSolutions. This wall mount is compatible with several Dell Small Form Factor units, which are listed below.

The monitor mount is compatible with most VESA hole patterned monitors, a standard Dell monitor, and is sold with the option of having the monitor tilt up and down, designed to best meet your needs.
Installation of the Dell OptiPlex SFF Wall Mount is quick and easy with 4 screw mounting points and drywall anchors. All required mounting hardware is included.

Compatible PCs
Optiplex 7010SFF
Optiplex 9010SFF
Optiplex 3010SFF
Optiplex 3020SFF
Optiplex 7020SFF
Optiplex 9020SFF
Optiplex 3010SFF
Optiplex 790SFF

Ask Katrina-Reducer Brackets,2POST-2UKIT,Sliding Keyboard and Dell R720 Rails

February 27th, 2014

We have a NEW way of answering some FAQ. Below is a segment called Ask Katrina:

Question: I have a 2 post rack and we are trying to install a UPS that already has the ears to attach to the rack. The problem that I have is this 2 post rack is 23″ wide. I am looking for some way to make the existing ears that I have work with my rack. Do you have anything that would work like that?

Answer: A standard 2 post rack is 19” in width. Like the one I have here today. However, there are 2 post racks that are either 23 or 24 inches wide. Since this is a problem that we have been faced with several times we developed a reducer bracket display part number on screen 2UBRK-23J-PAIR to solve this problem. These brackets will allow 19” equipment to mount in a 23” or 24” width rack. You can find this part is at racksolutions.com.
2UBRK-23J-PAIR http://www.racksolutions.com/reducer-brackets.html

Question: I want a sliding keyboard tray for my 2 Post rack. Do you have anything like that?

Answer: We do offer a solution for this situation and it will require 2 part numbers. The first part would be our 2POST-2UKIT. This will convert your 2post rack into a 4 post rack. Then, you will be
able to use your 2 post rack like a 4 post rack. Then simply attach our sliding keyboard display part number on screen 1UKYB-126 as if it were being installed into a 4 post rack.

1UKYB-126 http://www.racksolutions.com/rack-mount-keyboard-tray.html
2POST-2UKIT http://www.racksolutions.com/2post-center-mount-brackets.html

Question: I am having a problem mounting a Dell PowerEdge R720 in a non-Dell Rack?

Answer: Rack Solutions has designed a 3rd party sliding rail kit for the R720.This rail kit works in any hole type and has an adjustable mounting depth. Our rail kit works in a 2 Post or 4 post rack. For demonstration we have center mounted our rail kit to show its versatility. The part number on our website is 122-2580 and this comes with all the hardware needed to mount this rail kit.

122-2580 http://www.racksolutions.com/dell-r720-slide-rails.html

If you have any technical questions like the ones Katrina has answered today please let us know. You can call send us an email or use technical support chat at racksolutions.com. All of the items that have been discussed today can be found at racksolutions.com.

What To Consider When Purchasing Data Center Racks & Cabinets

November 27th, 2013

Rack Solutions is often asked by our customers, from small office IT departments to large data centers, what they should consider when purchasing racks and cabinets. Katrina sat down with Rodger Baldwin, Executive Account Manager at Rack Solutions to ask him some questions on this topic.

Q: What are the most important features buyers need to look for when purchasing new data center racks and cabinets?

A: There are several features that buyers should look for when purchasing new data center racks and cabinets. The most important include size of the cabinet/rack and airflow. Buyers should take into consideration the height, depth and width of the cabinet before making a purchase. Spending a little time researching this information can save tremendous expense down the road when adding servers and other equipment to a data center facility.

Airflow capability of a rack/cabinet is also a key factor to take into consideration. Whether or not you are using hot/cold aisles, the cabinets should always meet or exceed the requirements of the equipment being installed.

Q: What are some of the most common mistakes buyers make?

A: A common mistake buyers can make when procuring cabinets for a DC, is failing to adequately layout out the floor plan to determine the size of the cabinets required. If planned accordingly, buyers can maximize the square footage per rack by reviewing the floor plan layout prior to purchase, and choosing cabinets that have just the right width and length to maximize space and efficiency.

Q: What newer trends should buyers look for?

A: One of the trends we are seeing in DC Cabinet requests is the need for a wider, deeper cabinet. We have clients asking for 30″ wide and 48″ deep cabinets. As the market turns to a cloud based data center, there is more of a need for wider cabinets to accommodate the growing size of servers as well as the need for extra cable and airflow management. The wider cabinets allow for better airflow for the equipment that is mounted in the cabinet.

Please visit http://www.racksolutions.com/server-racks to see our wide selection of server rack products. To get information on the Rack Solutions line of Data Center Racks, call 1-888-903-7225.

Rack Solutions 16U Office Cabinet featured in Processor magazine

November 12th, 2013

Rack Solutions latest server rack product, the 16U Office Cabinet, is featured in the latest issue of Processor magazine as one of the featured products.  Below is the excerpt from the magazine:

“Small businesses and branch offices with in-house IT departments but no dedicated data center space or network closet often face unique problems. Among them is the need to find cabinets that can securely house servers and other equipment, yet fit in with an office environment.

RackSolutions had those needs in mind when it developed its new 16U Office Cabinet, said Rodger Baldwin, executive account manager. “Small businesses need a cabinet that provides full security, but they do not necessarily have room for a full size data center cabinet,” he says.

The compact 16U size means the cabinet can fit into small spaces, but it doesn’t sacrifice quality or features. It has front and rear lockable doors with large perforation to optimize air flow. In addition, while the doors on many cabinets only open 90 degrees, the doors on the 16U Office Cabinet swing to a full 180 degrees, making it much simpler to install or remove equipment, especially in tight spaces. Baldwin explained.

The cabinet’s construction includes security features that exceed the requirements of larger data center cabinets including secure cabinet side panels, and a latch with a key lock. Other standard features include vertical cable management bars and casters for easy portability.

As with all racks and cabinets from RackSolutions, the 16U Office Cabinet is extremely versatile with a weight capacity of 1200lbs and square holes for rack mounting, Baldwin confirmed. Additional options include added security in the form of a combination or biometric lock, add-on shelves, rails, drawers and KVMs. The 16U Office Cabinet is a practical solution that provides just enough cabinet to get the job done in small office environments!”

To learn more about the 16U cabinet, click on http://www.racksolutions.com/office-cabinet.html

The Processor talks about Rack Solutions – Innovation meets Design

February 6th, 2013
Texas-based manufacturer Rack Solutions has once again come up with an innovative rack design that will undoubtedly have an influence on the infrastructure of data centers. The company recently released what may be its most auspicious rack to date. The popRack provides a secure, selfcontained means to connect up to four tenants to their respective telecommunications
carriers. This cutting-edge enclosure protects the tenants’ infrastructures from unauthorized access by isolating each tenant’s distribution panels and cabling in a single compartment.
Clever Features:
Rack Solutions integrated this unique cabinet with a number of clever features, the most distinctive of which are the segregated cable channels (located in front and back) within each compartment that prevent access from any place else within the cabinet. The front channel’s function is to isolate the cables that connect the tenant to the respective carrier or carriers. The rear channel’s purpose is to isolate the cables that connect to the tenant’s network.
This cabinet was created specifically for use in Point of Presence (POP) rooms. These telecom connection areas, also
known as “meet me rooms” (MMRs) are prevalent in colocation centers, allowing companies such as AT&T, Sprint, Level 3, CenturyLink, or Inteliquent to physically connect to tenants providing transit service or Internet access.
Prior to the popRack, connecting a company with a telecom carrier typically required that an entire rack be dedicated
to one customer, and in most instances, this rack was significantly underutilized.
Because security is essential in a “meet me room” environment, an entire lockable cabinet, containing only a few distribution panels, devoted to a single client, certainly seems less than optimal. Given that data center floor space is
indispensable, such inefficiencies are difficult for data center managers to justify.
popRack designer Whit Wilson says the idea for the popRack originated the same way most of Rack Solutions’ new products do. “We had a customer who needed a custom solution to mitigate data center inefficiencies for a large-scale project. So we developed one.”
And like many of the rack manufacturer’s developments, it became a solution that is now being adopted by others in the data center space. “It’s just one of those things that users don’t realize they need until they see how well it’s working for someone else. Then naturally, they want it, too,” Wilson says.
Other Rack Specialties:
Rack Solutions has become most widely known for its four-post, open-frame racks available in heights from 24U to 58U. “The 58U is ideal for high-density deployments, including cloud and virtualization environments,” says Dennis Feeney, vice president of Rack Solutions. These open frame racks are very competitively priced, starting at
just $429.99. The company also makes 18U to 42U cabinet enclosures and mounting rails for servers and other equipment from all the leading OEMs. No matter what rack-based problems you may encounter, it’s likely that
Rack Solutions either has a product that will help, or its team can design and build one that will meet your needs and your budget. “I think the most noteworthy advantages that distinguish us from many other
rack companies are that we generate designs quickly, we produce mass volumes right here in our U.S. factory, and
we ship on time,” says Feeney. “We can handle lots of requests that others can’t or that wouldn’t make financial sense for them to even consider. We have the luxury of managing all aspects of the business from design to delivery.” Rack Solutions also manufactures rails, shelves, KVMs, two-post conversion products, and other items designed to resolve
issues and help companies overcome rackmounting obstacles.
(888) 903-7225 | www.racksolutions.com

Not all racks were created equal

January 31st, 2013

What is “Standard”?

In days past we had standards on a lot of items.  If you wore a size 9 shoe, you bought a size 9 shoe.  Not all size 9’s are the same anymore.  We get the same thing in the Rack Solutions industry as well.

When dealing with server rack technical support, we hear the term “standard rack” all the time.  A customer will come to us with “I don”t know why my server won”t fit. I have a standard 19″ rack”. The problem lies in the fact that, although there is a document defining standardized 19″ racks, there are a lot of details left out of the specifications.

The standard is EIA-310.

What the EIA-310 Rack Standard does not include:

Here is a brief list of rack details not completely defined or addressed:

  • Does the rack have 2 posts, 4 posts, or even 6 posts?
  • How deep is the rack”s mounting depth?
  • What is the thread type of the rack?
  • Are the rack holes threaded, square or round?
  • What is the shape of the rack upright: “L”, “C”, or “?”
  • Are there obstructions between the front and rear posts?
  • How much space is between the front door and the front post?
  • How much space is between the rear door and the rear post?

Problem #1 – Rack Holes

Rack hole type is the number one reason for server and rack incompatibility. This is why we always recommend square hole racks. You can always add threads with a cage nut if you need them. Most modern server rails are designed for square holes. Only a few OEM rails are compatible with both round and square holes.

As an example:

  • Dell”s RapidRails only work in square holes.
  • Dell”s VersaRails work in round, non-threaded holes, but not threaded holes such as 10-32 or 12-24.
  • Dell now has a combo rail that can switch between Rapid and Versa, but still does not work with threaded holes.

The solution is often to find a third-party rail for the server or use a fixed rail kit.

Problem #2 – Uprights and Obstructions

The second most common type of server and rack incompatibility is rack obstructions. The EIA spec does not address what the rack manufacturer does between the front and rear mounting posts. There are often additional flanges or other mounting features. These obstructions are notorious for colliding with the OEM”s slide rail and preventing the installation.

Again, the solution is often to find a third-party rail for the server or to use a fixed rail kit.

Problem #3 – Rear Door Collision

If we only had a dollar for every time we heard, “The server fits fine, except the back door of the rack won”t close”. This problem is caused by competition among the OEMs to fit as much technology as possible into a 1U or 2U server. They cannot make the box wider or taller, but they can make them deeper. And every year, the servers get even deeper until racks can no longer hold them. In the 1990″s, a 36″ deep rack worked great. In the early 2000″s a 39.37″ (1 meter) rack was the standard. Now racks are being sold as deep as 42″ and 44″ deep.

The solutions to this problem are limited, but there are a few (If only we had invented a “Rack Stretcher”).

Options include:

More Information:

For more information or to try and stump our experts, visit Rack Solutions