Looking for advice on datacenter electrical/generator

David Lesher wb8foz at nrk.com
Thu Apr 3 15:57:35 UTC 2003

Speaking on Deep Background, the Press Secretary whispered:
> We have about 10-15 minutes of UPS capacity.

I.e. -- long enough to: 

a) get metal spinning 
b) realize "Oh SHIT" and start "sync sync sync halt" on every box.

> The important thing with a generator is to make sure you test it
> regularly.  Ours (a diesel at one POP and a natural gas at another)
> automatically run each week and alert us to any problems.  Then, to test
> the full system (transfer switch, etc.), we "pull the handle" (shut off
> utility power) once a month and make sure that everything works as it is
> supposed to.


You must test the things UNDER LOAD to be sure all is well. ISTM
the SOP is 30min to an hour, but that can be done less frequently
than starting and warmup.

Further gotcha's:

Diesel fuel is a Petri dish. Weird bugs grow in it. [Call Tom Ridge!]
If you don't have the right additives, your filters SHALL clog
on same when you most need same.

Cooling systems/maint -- please recall the NYC telehouse {was it
60 Hudson?} where post 9/11 the generator went down on overheat
because the radiator was clogged...

Most Diesels have a "day tank" with underground storage for the
real supply, and a transfer pump. It may sound trite, but be
sure that pump is itself an emergency load, otherwise..... [Any
inference that I may have in fact run into this issue myself on
Somebody's installation is unproven rumor.]

A host is a host from coast to coast.................wb8foz at nrk.com
& no one will talk to a host that's close........[v].(301) 56-LINUX
Unless the host (that isn't close).........................pob 1433
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