[Beowulf] recommendation on crash cart for a cluster room: full cluster KVM is not an option I suppose?

Beat Rubischon beat at 0x1b.ch
Wed Sep 30 23:32:29 PDT 2009

Hi Mark!

Quoting <hahn at mcmaster.ca> (30.09.09 21:13):

>> I allready saw a lot of Beowulfs where the management network is so rarely
>> used that nobody detects errors. When an emergencie arrives, the operators
>> struggles over the screwed up switches and unplugged cables.
> I think that's insane (no offense intended).  same with the comment about
> crash carts being hard to maneuver.

You're absolutely right. And the fact that you regularly post to this list
is probably a sign that you keep your serverrooms clean :-)

During the last years I saw more then 100 datacenters - And I remember less
then 10 which were a good place to work. Empty boxes, rails and cables on
the floor, keyboards with PS2 plugs and USB only servers or even no monitor
at all. Broken double floor plates, leaking cooling pipes, cascaded
connector strips without free connectors. You remeber that cutted cables are
always too short? Once installed they are often not replaced by a longer one
which doesn't need to be spanned through the air. Ah yes, the clip on the
RJ-45 plugs could break. Even on uplinks of large servers.

As long as a single person or a motivated team handles a datacenter,
everything looks good. But when spare time operators or even worse several
groups are using a spare room in the basement, bad things are common. A
coworker brought the situation to the point: Entropy is a natural state and
it takes force to bring in order. And many people out there are not willing
or able to invest this piece of force.


     \|/                           Beat Rubischon <beat at 0x1b.ch>
   ( 0^0 )                             http://www.0x1b.ch/~beat/
Meine Erlebnisse, Gedanken und Traeume: http://www.0x1b.ch/blog/

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