Running hot

Discussion in 'DIY Server and Workstation Builds' started by T_Minus, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. T_Minus

    T_Minus Moderator

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    Anyone run their rack / servers hot in their garage and/or mini-data center? I know the trend is in this direction, just curious what people here are running at, how long, how it's going etc...

    I've been dragging feet with my mini-data center room but have the building material, a small AC I've had to 'get started', etc...

    However, I have a couple systems in this office space currently not cooled and I use them until 11-1pm depending on the day before retreating to my AC office in the house. The other day it was 86*F and the servers were chugging along just fine... right now I'm using an E3 Xeon as my desktop + another doing misc stuff in this space. The temp swings from low 60s at night, maybe even upper 50s (fan cooled the room all night) to pushing near 90 on hot days... the fans will go loud when almost 90 ambient but system stability/etc 100% fine.

    I told my wife I'm just going to delay the server deploy in the 'server room' that needs finished until winter so I don't have to worry about cooling (except with fans) for another 6-8 months... ;) gives me some time to finish my build, but also will save $$ not cooling for the tail-end of summer on hardware that's not paying for itself yet, seemed like a win-win to me... (except it not making $ yet ha ha).

    I should note that while I use them until it's too hot, they do run 24/7.

    Anyway, that's my story and revised plan to save a few bucks :p

    How hot are you running your gear?
     
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  2. PigLover

    PigLover Moderator

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    Running in an un-insulated garage in the East Bay of SF. Summer temps outside exceed 100F for several days/summer (thought lot less frequently than where you are at).

    I have the environmental sensors sensor on my APC UPS. Garage temps have come up as high as 94f. Sensor is sitting at top-rear of rack, so pretty much worst case. No real problem keeping the servers themselves in good operating ranges (60-65c max). Even the small rack of Pi's are OK. The only thing that is somewhat worrysome are disk temps that can wander up to 40C during the hot times. Don't really have any any history of faults in the 3.5" drives, but my failure rate on the cheap 2.5" 4tb Seagates seems to be higher than reported by others.

    It doesn't get humid here and our longest heatwave is rarely longer than 5-7 days. Not feeling any need to make any changes regarding cooling, etc. (though power bills are a PITA with PG&E's "eco-punitive" rate structure - looking into Solar soon).
     
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  3. T_Minus

    T_Minus Moderator

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    @PigLover that's my concern too (3.5" spinny disks) I'm starting to think my idea of 24x 4TB WD RE in a 846 may be MUCH better suited as 2x 12 drives in 2x 846 spaced apart to get better air flow.

    Very likely for me with small # of servers required 24/7 now I think the small AC could supplement and keep things within check/safe temps during our long heat waves.

    This year was killer with nearly 2 weeks at 100*F in early June! I heard even hot down there too. Usually we have only 2-3 weeks above 90 due to our elevation, and trees/forest around us... we don't have central AC in the house, and even in my office I rarely use it... and when I do it's still from 11AM onward.

    I did just custom install some really great air moving in my house, we put in a 3300CFM whole house fan, and I've put in so far 1x 8" 800CFM intake fan (filtered intake), I have a 2nd 8" 800cfm I'm adding. This way the whole house fan doesn't have to pull hard, and we can keep the CFM up very high. I don't want it to get stupid expensive to run all night (we do) but eventually I think a second whole house fan would put the CFM to allow more intake locations. IE: Not opening downstairs bathroom window the bathroom may be 72*F in the AM where-as the main area is down to 62*F so having air move in 'all rooms' is still very important. I'm going to try splitting the 8" (second one) into 2x 6" floor ducts for intake, and put them in different rooms see how that works to cool down. We also found some AC Filters that fit our upstairs windows near perfectly, after some adjusting I'll be able to open upstairs windows (where it's hot anyway) and run the whole house fan mid day for 1-2hrs which should keep structure cooler, and after 2-3 days of this will drop ambient indoor temp 1-2 very likely. Another thing I've been experimenting with is the radiant/reflective barriers, WOAH they are insane and work awesome! I'm going to install that in the attic at some point in the near future and same for my other office/shop space attic too. You can get enough to do your entire attic on amazon for around 150$ if you don't have a 3k/sqft+ house with a big attic.
     
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  4. Diavuno

    Diavuno Active Member

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    I have a handful of dual x8 systems running in my basement, all shoved into an opIen post 1/2 rack.

    Temps are never an issue (I live in Vallejo) but again, its in my basement.

    In a previous house I had the same stack running in the garage and they protested all summer ramping up the fans.
    They where in a full rack with a 0.5" plywood box around it, at the top was a typical household box fan, on the front door (sealed with automotive door gasket) was a house heater filter. It was flawless.

    Using an IT Watchdog I was able to setup 3 simple relays.
    1: box fan on low (at 70 If i recall correct, it always ran when the servers were powered up)
    2:box fan on hi (at 85 it hit this sometimes during mid day in the peak of summer,)
    3: If temp 2 (external probe that ran outside) was > 10 cooler outside turn on fan to vent garage.
     
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  5. JustinH

    JustinH Active Member

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    I'm running in a small closet in tropical Singapore. Only fans for exhaust. Ambient outdoor temps stay around 32-34C.

    I have a Old Dell R510, and Intel 4 node H2213 (with 2 nodes powered on all the time), a 24 x 2.5" diskshelf and a Cisco Nexus 5010 Switch than runs HOT!

    Inlet temps are around high 30's to mid 40's and outlet temps are low 50's to mid 50's. (this is in Celsius)

    Initially I had problems with fan failures on the Cisco and Intel Chassis but things have been good for months now.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  6. realtomatoes

    realtomatoes Active Member

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    @T_Minus got a link to those type of fans? would you know if those things consume more than window type ACs?
     
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  7. pricklypunter

    pricklypunter Well-Known Member

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    My pile of crap hit 55 celsius during last week on account of the extra warm weather, it didn't miss a beat though. Normal for me in summer is mid 40's. It sits in a room that gets the sun most of the day, but I expect that to fall quite a bit once I finally get it all into the basement :)
     
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  8. Evan

    Evan Well-Known Member

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    @JustinH your using graphana for that data ?
    Hi from a fellow Singapore based guy :)
     
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  9. JustinH

    JustinH Active Member

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    @Evan: nope. Zabbix pulling the temps via IPMI (for the servers) or SNMP for the switch


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  10. CookiesLikeWhoa

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    Live here in Sunnyvale and those couple of weeks where it was 100F everyday where rough, but nothing missed a beat. Servers never went above 65C. A Ubiquiti US-48-500W climbed to 81C, but that thing idles at 79C, so while high, didn't cause any problems and no warnings either. Only thing that happened that was troublesome was all HDD's in the NAS's climbed to about 41-43C. Hard to keep them below 40C when the living room is 35C as is. SSD's and NVMe drives all stayed below 38C.

    Keep a couple of switches and a Xeon-D in the garage. Even when it was 40C in the garage the server never got above 63C. Granted it is lightly loaded, it still stayed cool.

    Nothing failed, never got any warnings (other than drive temps from FreeNAS), and it didn't miss a beat. The only thing I was worried about was the HDDs.
     
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  11. saivert

    saivert Member

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    I used to have a single 2U server in the garage a couple of years ago for 1 year here in south of Norway due to noise. The biggest issue was cold during winters because the disks were going subzero °C which may not be optimal. I ended up constricting the airflow during the coldest weeks to maintain temperature around 0° C otherwise disks would have been cooled to -10° C or lower.

    I didn't have a problem with frost buildup either as there is always low humidity during winters here.
    I wouldn't recommend it on a permanent basis. Eventually replaced the server with a tower server that I can keep in doors.
     
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  12. talsit

    talsit Member

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    I've got four of ten servers running in the basement now. An Intel 2224 2u running 100% two home built E3's (one full tilt, one about 10%) and an L5620 node on a SM four node server and a full SGI SE3016.

    Ambient is 87F at the top of the rack. No issues. When it breaks 90 I shutdown the SM node.

    Last time I checked disk temps they were 38-41. Max temp on a 44,000 hour disk is 44, no complaints from any alarm.
     
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  13. T_Minus

    T_Minus Moderator

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    I think one company makes these and a couple sell them.
    I have the TerraBloom 8" 735CFM fan:
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06WGPJ2MQ/ref=twister_B01L0D0UAU?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

    Power usage is within 5w of their spec. The speed control is useless.

    They make very cheap versions that move <half the air, I have some of them for other needs, way less power draw too, so may be useful in some applications.

    I can't find the other model I got but it's the "silent" version it's made out of metal, about 2x physically as large, about half the CFM and 2x the $$ but it's VERY VERY QUIET, as-in I've used it at LAN parties to move air from the room and no one even noticed / mentioned the 'fan sound', it was quieter than the box fan we were using in another location too.

    There's more parts depending on your plan... I got ducting, back-draft damper (good one with gasket that goes inside, about 2x $ cheaper, but worth it), and floor register quick install kit. I also got filters so the air I'm in taking from outside wont' be dirty/dusty. They're popular for 'grows' so they also sell filters/carbon filters if you want to use those as pollen/dirt filters too they work just a lot more $$$ to replace / keep updated... may be useful to use them in combo of a MERV rated filter so if you're in a smokey area you can still intake fresh air in your house.

    We have 2 of these: Amazon.com: Lasko #2155A Electrically Reversible Window Fan, 16 Inches: Home & Kitchen
    I've used every night (except the really hot ones) all summer, every year since 2011, still working.

    I use one, with the above 8", and they remove any/all restrictions from the whole house fan :) It was 61 inside this AM and 60 outside so it cooled entire house to ambient outdoor last night, and now today it's already almost 85 and inside it's still 65 :) cooling your structure gives you a TON of thermal mass to get through hot day(s) with no AC :) The temp inside today should peak around 70 or 71 depending on what we do in the house, how many people are here, and how many times we go in/out, etc... Cooking makes a huge difference.
     
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  14. mackle

    mackle Active Member

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    Just make sure you have a good, responsive, monitoring set up as you'll have less leeway to react during high temps if you lose a fan or something cooling related. That was my experience over-clocking in a garage.
     
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  15. briandm81

    briandm81 Active Member

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    I have my rack in a room I built in the garage. All but one wall is insultated, but the one that isn't is a brick wall facing the morning and noon sun. So in that room, even with a 14,000 BTU A/C, it still sits around 10 degrees below outside temp. So if its 103 outside (I'm in DFW), its about 93 or 94 in my server room. I'm in the process of swapping all of my cases to Supermicro cases just to make sure everything has proper airflow. I look forward to winter...
     
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