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I just bought a 19" rack server for testing-purpose. Everything is fine except it's really noisy and i was planning to keep it in my office.

I've to find a cheap solution to keep it in my office without noise.

I'm thinking about a metal cupboard, but is it safe? Is it safe to keep the server on while I'm at home if I don't have any fire alarm system?

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

rackmount servers are noisy, noise levels are never a concern, when talking about systems that belong in a server room, and not under your desk.

When I had to install those in offices, I would usually find a suitable niche, make sure the central A/C has an extra tube I can push in there, so that cold air is always blown in, install the server in there, and put a thick wooden door on the front.

Another way is to go with an even more customised solution (the link shows a server cupboard I've made, with quiet fans at the back to pull air out, a set of a/c dust nets at the front, several UPS units and up to about 6-8 1U servers inside).

Server 2

Server 1

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i had the same idea, but is it just a normal cupboard? – user34098 Feb 8 '10 at 19:26
The one on the pics? Custom made, but not too expensive :) Definitely much much cheaper than a 24U Rack – dyasny Feb 8 '10 at 21:40

You server will have come with a safe-installation guide explaining how it needs to be kept, this will include clearances on all six sides, air-flow requirements etc. Do whatever it say in there, they don't write and distribute them with servers for the heck of it - so if you can put it in your cupboard and still adhere to those requirements then you'll be fine.

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For a test server to keep in the office I would always recommend buying a PC instead. Spec it up by all means, but remember that as a test server it doesn't need to be the full spec that a live one would have as it's not going to have many active users.

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actaully it's my old production server – user34098 Feb 8 '10 at 19:24
Well scratch that then. ;) – Le Comte du Merde-fou Feb 8 '10 at 19:51

I would have done as mh suggests and just use a PC. However,as you've already purchased the server I suggest that you find some other place to house it, where the noise won't be such an issue. In you garage perhaps. Noise reduction methods frequently bring about other problems, such as reduced air flow. Be extremely cautions and take Chopper3's advice and read the installation documents - properly.

You may also want to check that you have the correct drivers installed for your operating system. As a general rule that will result in the fans slowing down to only the speed that is required at any given time. Failure to have the correct drivers normally results in the fans spinning at full speed all the time.

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