What is a Data Center Rack?

Data center relocation
Data center relocation

“How much do server racks cost?” is a common question for many companies that would rather try and keep their costs down. When considering making such investments, it pays to consider their benefits and what might happen if you didn’t get them installed.

The answer to this question is that without server racks, your equipment is more likely to become damaged, is more prone to theft, and maintenance can be more difficult than it needs to be. This might make you wonder how racks work in a data center, and this article takes a look at the answer.

How Racks Work In Data Center

A data center rack is a type of framework that is usually made from steel and houses your servers, cables, and other equipment. Your servers can fit neatly into the framework, helping to keep them organized and safely off the floor. A data center rack can also benefit you in other ways, including:

  •         Airflow

Airflow is perhaps one of the most important aspects of how racks work in a data center. A data center rack will provide sufficient air to flow between servers and other equipment. This helps to keep the servers cool, preventing damage that might otherwise be caused by extreme temperatures, and also helps to keep the servers running at optimal speeds.

  •         Wire Organization

Keeping your hardware organized neatly in a data rack will make it easier to keep wiring organized. Wires can be tidied neatly and uniformly, helping technicians to find the appropriate wire when needed. Tangles can also be avoided which might otherwise cause damage, and the wires are less likely to be damaged by accidents.

  •         Access

How many racks are included in a data center can also depend on how much access you need to servers. Data center racks help to keep everything neat and tidy. Not only is this more aesthetically pleasing but it also makes for easier access to servers when needed. It becomes a lot easier for technicians to reach individual servers, when needed, without having to climb over other equipment. It is also much easier to physically remove and replace individual servers when needed.

  •         Security

Servers will often contain highly sensitive data that is the target of potential thieves. Each server can be securely attached to a data rack, however, making it a lot harder for them to be removed. It also reduces the likelihood of potential damage should a person or object accidentally knock into the servers.

How many racks are in a data center can vary according to their dimensions, and racks are also usually flexible in terms of configurations. This makes it easier for you to have your servers ideally placed next to other servers in a tidy manner and with sufficient room for airflow. This flexibility is particularly useful when it comes to using equipment of different shapes and sizes.

Data Center racks can also be fitted with different components, including:

  • Blanking Panels: Blanking panels are used to close openings in server racks to make it easier to regulate temperature, while they also add aesthetic appeal.
  • Cable Management Bars: As the name suggests, cable management bars make it easier to manage cables and wires. This further helps to keep them safe from damage and make maintenance and repair easier.
  • Rails: When rails are installed into server racks, the servers can then easily slide in and out to provide easy access when needed. This helps to make maintenance, repairs and upgrades a lot easier and quicker.

What Is A Data Server Cabinet?

How racks work in a data center is very similar to how server cabinets work, but there are a few key differences. The main difference between racks and cabinets is that cabinets are closed. This offers a number of advantages over a data center rack, including:

  •         Enhanced Temperature Control

Keeping servers in an enclosed cabinet will give you greater control of temperature. This will help you to ensure they are performing at their optimal speed, while also giving better protection against damage from extreme temperatures.

  •         Enhanced Security

Server cabinets provide more security than data center racks do. The cabinets can be securely locked, making sure that nobody is able to access them at all without the appropriate clearance. Server cabinets also provide further protection against accidental damage than data center racks do.

How many racks are in a data center depends on a number of factors, such as the size and style of the racks and how many servers you have? Regardless, they help to keep everything organized so access becomes easier when it’s needed. The servers are also better protected from theft and accidental damage, and make it easier to control the temperature. Data racks also help to make the workplace a tidier and more aesthetically pleasing place to be.

If you’re still wondering “how much are server racks?”, you should bear in mind that the potential downside of not having them can cost a lot more than having them installed. Considering the benefits above, having them installed will be a very worthwhile investment.

We have over 20 years of experience in the data center business and would love to help you pick out your data center server racks, don’t hesitate to call us at 832-663-6028. Or if you’d prefer to let the pros handle it, we offer fully managed colocation with our Colo+ service, alongside standard Houston colocation, which includes migration, rack and stack, and free remote hands on, so you never have to touch your gear again.