Hot weather and power outages continue

Sean Donelan sean at
Mon Jul 24 12:26:34 UTC 2006

On Mon, 24 Jul 2006, Richard A Steenbergen wrote:
> I'm surprised nobody said anything about the (apparently regional) utility
> outage in NoVA on Saturday.

There have been several around the country.  Secaucus, NJ, various
cities near Los Angeles and the SF Bay Area, not to mention the power
quality goes to hell when the grid gets very hot.  I've been a bit
surprised we haven't heard about more equipment failures.

> Equinix Ashburn was running on generator for
> several hours, but apparently the SAVVIS facility down the road a few
> miles in Sterling (old Exodus facility) didn't fare so well. The latest
> story I heard was that they lost 14 out of 16 chillers and customers had
> to send techs in in shifts because it reached over 130F inside.

I've always been a fan of being able to force 100% economizer and chiller
loop bypass emergency operation; it won't keep you "cool" but will help
keep your data center from turning into an Easy-Bake Oven(tm). But that
failure operating mode is rarely part of the standard HVAC programming.
You are probably still going to need to replace some toasted disks
and chips afterwards.  There is a reason why NEBS equipment costs more.

> Come on Sean, this "very few disruptions" stuff is below your usual
> standards. The least you can do to help us pass the time in this damn heat
> is to recount a few good stories about routers you could scramble eggs on.
> :)

I remember back in the old days, when all we had were AGS+ routers in
wiring closets without any air conditioning .... We had to carry them
uphill, both ways.

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