Equipment Placement in Rack



  • is there a standard for what goes where in a rack?
    Especially smaller wall mounted ones?



  • This was asked in "Anything Goes" but is a real, serious question so I forked it out.



  • @hobbit666 said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    is there a standard for what goes where in a rack?

    Yes, so much so that it is covered on the Server+ exam.

    The most important thing for traditional racks is that heavy equipment (like UPS units) goes all the way on the bottom and you fill bottom to top heaviest to lightest. So generally networking gear goes up top, servers go in the middle, and power and batteries on the bottom. Storage is generally below servers.



  • @hobbit666 said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    Especially smaller wall mounted ones?

    Not so much as weight is generally the biggest factor. You still want heavier stuff towards the bottom to distribute weight on the wall mounts, though.



  • I find it pretty typical to have firewall on top and switches either next or in the middle. Are you putting servers in this? Or only networking gear?



  • @scottalanmiller said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    This was asked in "Anything Goes" but is a real, serious question so I forked it out.

    Did wonder if to make separate topic šŸ™‚



  • @scottalanmiller said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    I find it pretty typical to have firewall on top and switches either next or in the middle. Are you putting servers in this? Or only networking gear?

    In most of our sites No. They generally have just Patch panel, switch, router (not rack mountable/doesn't come as one) maybe 2.

    Some sites may have something special, like a phone system.



  • I did this for a client recently. We mounted the UPS vertically instead of in the rack, put less strain on the rack. We don't have any servers.

    Top down
    Patch panels
    switch
    firewall
    shelf for NAS



  • So if we take as any example a site i visited yesterday as they need a clean up. Currently in the cab is

    Patch Panel
    Switch
    Avaya IP Office
    2 routers loose on the bottom. Draytek 2860 and a Cisco 887



  • @scottalanmiller said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    The most important thing for traditional racks is that heavy equipment (like UPS units) goes all the way on the bottom and you fill bottom to top heaviest to lightest. So generally networking gear goes up top, servers go in the middle, and power and batteries on the bottom. Storage is generally below servers.

    This is how i've always done "full" racks that have big equipment in



  • Most 4 post racks are stable and stationary and it doesn't really matter where you put stuff as long as you don't go crazy. Most servers aren't that heavy unless you get into 4U servers with dozen of 3.5" drives then all bets are off.

    This is from APC 42U rack users manual:

    WARNING
    TIP HAZARD
    ā€¢ This cabinet is easily tipped. Make sure you have secured the cabinet to the floor before installing equipment.
    ā€¢ Install the heaviest equipment first and toward the bottom of the cabinet to prevent the cabinet from becoming top-heavy.
    ā€¢ Do not extend equipment on sliding rails until you have installed 158 kg (350 lb) of equipment into the bottom of the cabinet for stability or until you have installed the stabilizer plate or bolt-down brackets. Do not extend more than one piece of equipment on sliding rails at a time.
    Failure to follow these instructions can result in death, serious injury, or equipment damage.



  • Besides tipping risk, what will matter though is more of a practical matter.

    • Like how cables should be routed.
    • If you need to read displays on servers you have to be able to see them.
    • If you have something you want to access regularly you want it at a practical height and not have to use a step ladder or crawl on the floor.
    • Where cables are coming from (bottom, top of rack or somewhere else).
    • Heat generation and air flow.
    • Possibility of mounting heavy equipment. Unless you have a lift, it's easier to mount them low.


  • @Dashrender said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    I did this for a client recently. We mounted the UPS vertically instead of in the rack, put less strain on the rack. We don't have any servers.

    Top down
    Patch panels
    switch
    firewall
    shelf for NAS

    If you have room. I like the:

    • patch
    • space
    • switch
    • space
    • patch

    Arrangement. Gives room for some cable management tooling. Also if you have the room an oversized rack makes cable management so much easier.



  • @coliver said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    @Dashrender said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    I did this for a client recently. We mounted the UPS vertically instead of in the rack, put less strain on the rack. We don't have any servers.

    Top down
    Patch panels
    switch
    firewall
    shelf for NAS

    If you have room. I like the:

    • patch
    • space
    • switch
    • space
    • patch

    Arrangement. Gives room for some cable management tooling. Also if you have the room an oversized rack makes cable management so much easier.

    I prefer this:

    • 24 Port Patch Panel
    • 48 Port Switch
    • 24 Port Patch Panel
    • 24 Port Patch Panel
    • 48 Port Switch
    • 24 Port Patch Panel

    This is extremely clean patch cabling



  • top 24 port patch plugs into the top 24 ports of the switch, bottom does the same on the bottom of the switch. Cabling company forgot to patch like 38 ports at this specific site which is why the patch panels aren't the correct number.
    2.jpg

    I also do this with the ISP equipment (below). I didn't happen to have my UPS installed yet so ignore the cables going along the wall for the verizon tech.

    1.jpg



  • @coliver said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    @Dashrender said in Equipment Placement in Rack:

    I did this for a client recently. We mounted the UPS vertically instead of in the rack, put less strain on the rack. We don't have any servers.

    Top down
    Patch panels
    switch
    firewall
    shelf for NAS

    If you have room. I like the:

    • patch
    • space
    • switch
    • space
    • patch

    Arrangement. Gives room for some cable management tooling. Also if you have the room an oversized rack makes cable management so much easier.

    There's only one patch and one switch, so it does mimic your desire.



  • This is what i was dealing with:-

    Apart from needed a shelf at the bottom for the two routers. Maybe shorter cables from Patch to Switch?
    The 4 RJ45 parts on the side will be removed, these are old PSTN lines that are no longer needed.

    What about power? Mount a surge strip underneath the cab? or leave it loose on the bottom towards the back?

    IMG_20191022_133144.jpg



  • @hobbit666

    Two switches but looks like there is space for everything in the top switch?

    Anyway, it's tricky to make it nice when you have to use what you have.

    But different length patch cables make a big difference. Same color unless it's color coded for some reason.

    I suggest the thin patch cables that someone from here recommended to me. They are awesome and a lot thinner than what it looks like. You can fit about three times as many cables in the same space.

    https://www.fs.com/c/28awg-slim-patch-cables-613

    And yes, put 19" power strip on the bottom. Something like:
    https://www.fs.com/products/29452.html

    I'd probably forgo the horizontal cable management and go directly from patch panel to switch. Perhaps even move them together. If you have vlans, reconfigure the switch so you cable it neatly.
    patchpanel_switch_cabling.jpg


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