I was looking into getting a few shiny rack servers for my home based business. During this, I realized I would need a server rack (so that it looks neat and tidy at the least). The only problem? Even small 15U racks start at $500, and that's just for the crappy ones!

For the price of a small rack, I could buy an extra server!

Any ideas for small office/home office racks?

closed as off topic by John Gardeniers, pauska, Rob Moir, jscott, Shane Madden Jun 30 '11 at 14:48

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    I don't care what the currency is, you can't buy a real server for $500. – John Gardeniers Jun 30 '11 at 11:11
  • @JohnGardeniers The local recycler always has used rack/cabinets for ~$100. They're usually older and not in the best conditions, missing a part or two... but they're dirt cheap and entirely acceptable for a home rack. – Chris S Jan 11 '12 at 0:44

If you don't want to spend all that money into a rack, buy tower servers instead.

But if you're still wanting to get a cheap rack, this is a 40USD one.

Ikea tables have been used for some time in hackerspaces for cheap replacements. More informations on eth0 hackerspace wiki.

Here is the "enterprise" edition from revspace, a dutch hackerspace :

enter image description here

(notice the club mate bottle)

Edit: Here is a side picture of my home lab rack. See my answer for more pros and cons about it.


  • ah, the LackRack setup. Interesting idea. – tombull89 Jun 30 '11 at 10:39
  • IKEA Lack serie, right? :-) – 3molo Jun 30 '11 at 12:09
  • @3molo: indeed, hence the name LackRack ;) – petrus Jun 30 '11 at 18:08

For the price of a small rack, I could buy an extra server!

But a more mordern machine. My small servers cost around 2000 USD - that is 16gb memory, desktop chip, 8 disks.

The only problem? Even small 15U racks start at $500,

Try looking at the prices for office furniture ;) THEN you get shocks.

Seriously, 1000 USD for a rack is not a lot of money. Things do not come for free in our society.

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    Couldn't agree more, this is serverfault.com, it's not homecheaponetworking.com, this site is for professionals, who usually have budgets for the right tools. – Chopper3 Jun 30 '11 at 8:59
  • Thabnks. I thought it may sound harsh.. The poster always can put up a 20 USD cheap rack from wallmart ;) – TomTom Jun 30 '11 at 9:20
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    Harsh? from you? ;) – Chopper3 Jun 30 '11 at 9:32

I know little about US rack manufacturers, but at least here overseas (Europe), we have a couple of manufacturers serving the "low end" segment. You also always could buy an open frame (the LackRack would also fall under this definition) if you do not need the physical access restrictions of a cabinet - they are significantly cheaper than the rack cabinet models.


For my servers I went to one of my local stores and purchased some of the wire shelving units similar to the following: http://www.metro.com/commercial/shelving/wire/

They are perfect if you are looking to hold a variety of case sizes. Most of my network cables are neatly velcro wrapped to the vertical poles. I've been using this for the last 4 years and it's been a great investment for my computer lab at home.

Currently in my rack
(2) UPSs
(2) PDUs
(1) Netscreen SSG20
(1) Raritan KSX-II
(2) Mini Tower systems
(1) 8 Port procurve (zip tied to hang from one of the racks)
(2) Shuttle KPCs

If I want to I can probably add two more Shuttles if I shift the racks around, and if I used the top shelf I could add two or three more mini towers. The rack I have it about 16"x24".

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