I often hear from our remote system administrators that they will 'swap the chassis' on our Linux boxes. But I'm not familiar with this phrase. Anyone has a clue on what it means? We have a Raid array on those boxes.

3 Answers 3


This means they are changing everything but the hard drives. This usually happens if there is an issue they can't explain with a software cause, and it is faster to just change the motherboard/RAM than troubleshoot the issue.

  • Hmm, is that possible without any downtime involved? They seem to be able to do that without turning off our databases. Commented Aug 2, 2009 at 1:07
  • If you have hot-hot redundancy going on your databases (at least two machines), then there wouldn't be downtime. But if they are changing the motherboard and there isn't a failover available, there will be downtime.
    – Adam Brand
    Commented Aug 2, 2009 at 1:14

well, I presume this means the entire server will be replaced, with only the HDDs left maybe. Basically the server chassis is the box, with no parts inside, but as I said, the expression should mean replacing a full chassis, not just the dumb box


I'd imagine they mean they'll move the data onto a similar set of hardware, presumably due to there being a hardware issue with the current system.

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