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Private Colo - 1/3 racks, and what does 1/4 rack actually mean?

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  • Private Colo - 1/3 racks, and what does 1/4 rack actually mean?

    I've been looking at colocation around UK, US, and EU. Everyone offers U space, 1/4 rack, 1/2 rack, and full racks. only seen one place selling 1/3 racks. either they're mad or smart.

    P20130606-100349-7585.jpg

    I like the idea of your own private space. others do it too, but not 1/3 racks. are locked/private spaces and unescorted access a new trend? all the DCs I've visited before were just open racks

    interesting to see how people count. to me a full rack = 42U. been like that for 30 years that I know of (well, since I started doing work in racks that is). so 1/4 rack = 10U. others give 12, which is nice, but some are 9 and I've even seen 8. OK 1U is only 1.75", but to some people an extra inch is a big deal.

    I looked at the colocker concept and initially thought it was great, until I saw how wide the space was. or should I say, how narrow. I think they missed a trick there. not pioneer of locker based colo. just pioneer of SQUARE lockers. if only they were wider

  • #2
    1/3 rack seems quite cool to me, but as with everything these days it seems more about power than space.
    Admin for Webhostchat.co.uk

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    • #3
      Due to pricing alot of people seem to go from a 1/4 to a full rack rather than take a half in between due to the hasstle of moving kit and the cost difference but others may see the opposite trend
      Simon Gunton
      The views expressed in the above post are mine alone and not necessarily those of anyone else

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      • #4
        I've seen one or two rack vendors that make 1/3 racks, but I don't think I've ever seen anyone in the UK offering lockable rack space from them. That said, I've got a feeling that Karl from KDA might have used them back in their Commercial Colocation days.

        To me, a 1/4 rack should be 10U or 11U, but it's always worth double checking the exact number, just to be sure.

        A full rack should be at least 42U, but these days most places seem to be using 48U, which is nice if you're using horizontal PDUs.
        GoDaddy are abusing WHC with shill advertising

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Bruce View Post
          I've been looking at colocation around UK, US, and EU. Everyone offers U space, 1/4 rack, 1/2 rack, and full racks. only seen one place selling 1/3 racks. either they're mad or smart.

          [ATTACH=CONFIG]975[/ATTACH]

          I like the idea of your own private space. others do it too, but not 1/3 racks. are locked/private spaces and unescorted access a new trend? all the DCs I've visited before were just open racks
          Very Odd. I suspect just about every colo operator on here have 1/4s and 1/2 as well as full racks available. Granted I am aware of at least one local colo op who still uses open frame racks but they wouldn't be my choice. Even in a shared rack where you are accompanied and attended at all times (or the server is removed to a build room to work on) I would want doors, not least to ensure accidents don't happen (caught a cable in the passing server rail under your arm for example).

          Rack dependent, 1/4 and 1/2 sectioned racks are usually 48U high so by the time you allow for the dividing section you still get 10/11U usable. All that said power is as Neil rightly points out more the issue. Customers can still easily use 10 amps in a quarter and not everyone (or every rack) is well equipped to cool a potential 10Kw per rack footprint, especially in sectional racks where airflow management is often poorer
          Peter Knapp - CCS Leeds Ltd - www.ccsleeds.co.uk
          Coal Road, Leeds. LS14 2AQ / Co. reg: 03507910 / VAT reg: GB 698 2027 05 / Tel: 0113 294 66 99
          UK Leased Lines | Hosted VoIP & SIP Trunks | EFM - Ethernet First Mile
          Free Install and Cisco Router on Fully Managed EFM at up to 20Mb/s only £300 per month

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          • #6
            power density keeps increasing. does that mean older DCs need to be refitted? presumably those in the business of selling stuff will say yes you do.

            I wonder what can you really do with 0.5A per 1/4 rack not a realistic power budget for a typical colo user

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Bruce View Post
              I wonder what can you really do with 0.5A per 1/4 rack not a realistic power budget for a typical colo user
              Where on this planet do you only get 0.5a with a quarter?
              Peter Knapp - CCS Leeds Ltd - www.ccsleeds.co.uk
              Coal Road, Leeds. LS14 2AQ / Co. reg: 03507910 / VAT reg: GB 698 2027 05 / Tel: 0113 294 66 99
              UK Leased Lines | Hosted VoIP & SIP Trunks | EFM - Ethernet First Mile
              Free Install and Cisco Router on Fully Managed EFM at up to 20Mb/s only £300 per month

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              • #8
                Originally posted by pete-ccs View Post
                where on this planet do you only get 0.5a with a quarter?
                th?

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                • #9
                  Private cells enable customers to have the security of their own rack without having the have a large empty rack.

                  Community space doesn't make sense if you have more than 2-3 servers and are mindful of your security.
                  Why do you want to pay out on Colo for better uptime then risk it all when your neighbour accidentally unplugs you server while working on theirs.

                  While space isn't the premium, it is still a factor (DC's don't want half empty racks using 1/3 of the design power)

                  We sell 1/4 (11U), 1/3 (15U) and 1/2 (22U), we have more 1/2's than 1/'4s and only a few 1/3's

                  DC's do need retrofitting as power increases (look at TH) but they also need retrofitting every 10-12 years to maintain operational viability, 10 year old CRAC's tend to cost more to run than replace both in energy and parts / downtime.

                  We replaced one of our UPS's (8 years old) cost of replacement was paid for in energy savings in 9 months. (Going from 78% efficient to 95% with the same load)
                  Gary Coates - ServerHouse Ltd
                  Established Colocation provider, Running Two Tier II & Two III data centres from two diverse sites in Hampshire. Bespoke complex managed hosting, 24x7 IT and resilient business connectivity from 100Mbs
                  Tel: 01329 800911 - www.serverhouse.co.uk

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SteveWright View Post
                    th?
                    Well yeah.. That said if all you are rocking is a small pop 0.5A is just about useful..
                    Peter Knapp - CCS Leeds Ltd - www.ccsleeds.co.uk
                    Coal Road, Leeds. LS14 2AQ / Co. reg: 03507910 / VAT reg: GB 698 2027 05 / Tel: 0113 294 66 99
                    UK Leased Lines | Hosted VoIP & SIP Trunks | EFM - Ethernet First Mile
                    Free Install and Cisco Router on Fully Managed EFM at up to 20Mb/s only £300 per month

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                    • #11
                      Years ago we offered 1/3 and 1/5 and 1/8 racks in Amsterdam (all with 'own' doors front and rear) - the racks being 55u high overall.

                      Due to variations in what 'space' you get for 1/4 rack, we tend to describe them as private 11u racks as now as it's more specific
                      Rob Golding Astutium Ltd AS#29527 Company#08183381 Phone#020 3475 2555
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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by othelloRob View Post
                        Years ago we offered 1/3 and 1/5 and 1/8 racks in Amsterdam (all with 'own' doors front and rear) - the racks being 55u high overall.

                        Due to variations in what 'space' you get for 1/4 rack, we tend to describe them as private 11u racks as now as it's more specific
                        How on earth did you work and get gear into a 55u high rack?!
                        Peter Knapp - CCS Leeds Ltd - www.ccsleeds.co.uk
                        Coal Road, Leeds. LS14 2AQ / Co. reg: 03507910 / VAT reg: GB 698 2027 05 / Tel: 0113 294 66 99
                        UK Leased Lines | Hosted VoIP & SIP Trunks | EFM - Ethernet First Mile
                        Free Install and Cisco Router on Fully Managed EFM at up to 20Mb/s only £300 per month

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Pete-CCS View Post
                          How on earth did you work and get gear into a 55u high rack?!
                          Slighty easier than when doing the wiring for the 2u fan roof units after they were fitted taking them to 57.4u from floor to top !

                          Actually, same as 'little old me' does when working in the 48u racks we use in the UK - a ladderstep
                          Rob Golding Astutium Ltd AS#29527 Company#08183381 Phone#020 3475 2555
                          Domain Name Registration - uk domains just £5.55/2 years | DNS Services | Web Hosting from £2.95 | Minecraft Servers from £2.50
                          London Docklands Colocation 1u £49.95 | Virtual Private Servers from £4 | Virtual Dedicated Servers from £12 | Managed + Unmanaged Dedicated Servers from £69
                          Make more money from domains - Talk to me about our Domain Reseller Accounts and WHMCS modules

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                          • #14
                            I really wanted to overhaul the co-location at PoundHost as for me, even today, practices are really behind the times. 1/4 racks were usually just that, shares in 1/4 racks, not 10U/11U lockable ones, all with limited choice in power consumption.

                            I have have seen a few companies on here advertise co-location, splitting out space and selling power incrementally, which is I prefer to more rigid packages. I have not looked at Colocker in depth, but I do like the concept.

                            I am not aware though of any co-location service where you can co-locate say a 1U server in a secured section of a rack and pay for your actual power consumption. Data centres predict and pay for their power in advance, but it should be straight forward to offer far more flexible packages. We have seen such changes to the rest of hosting, so it would be good to see the same for co-location.
                            Michael Follett

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                            • #15
                              there are some colo providers that charge separately for space, power, IPs, and transit. submetering is a very nice way to go, rather than a simple "measure power at startup".

                              anyone in UK doing true submetering? not just monitoring power realtime, but actually charging on usage by kWh.

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