Mar 11, 2015
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Universal Tool-Less Rack Rails?

Are you familiar with universal tool-less rack rails? Have you recently been introduced to these and have a few questions regarding their usability and benefits? If you want to know more about the equipment your business utilizes then you need the information here.  Some of the most common questions about these racks and rack solutions are highlighted here.

How is the server mounted to the rack? 

The majority of units will come with the necessary rails. There are two basic types of racks: the round hole and the square hole. While there are a number of racks that are assembled with screws, the one that is easiest to use is the universal tool-less rack rails that are able to be assembled quickly. Any server you purchase from a major manufacturer will come with the mounting instructions.

Universal Tool-less Rack Rails

What is the PDU and do you need one? 

PDU, or Power Distribution Unit, is essentially a glorified power strip. The PDUs are available in three basic options: switched, metered, and basic.

  • Basic PDU:

Located closest to the actual power strip. The one that end plugs into the receptacle for the actual input and the strip that offers a number of receptacles for plugging in all your gear.

  • Metered PDU:

Similar to the basic PDU with extra features allowing you to see the total power being drawn, usually reported to you in Amps.

  • Switched PDU:

Includes features of metered and basic PDU with additional features. You can connect this PDU with a web client or telnet to remotely cycle the power to the individual receptacle or outlet.

How do you get a mouse, keyboard or monitor into this rack? 

The very best solution for this is what is referred to as a 1U keyboard and monitor setup. This offers a rack solution that slides into the rack just like the rack mount server that is located above. It is usually mounted on the rails and will take up to 1U or 1.75 inches of total rack space. When it slides out, the monitor will help to lever up into the proper viewing position. When finished, you can easily slide this equipment back into the actual rack and it will collapse into the 1U space once again.

Is it a better idea to purchase a brand name server, or a cheaper option? 

The best answer to this question is to determine the rack solution that is best for your needs. There are both pros and cons to each of the brand names as well as the off-brand names. If this is your first universal tool-less rack rails equipment then it will likely be easier for you to work with a well-known brand name that received good ratings, since these are usually more standard and much easier to rack.

When it comes to purchasing this equipment it is essential to evaluate your needs prior to making a purchase. There are a number of tool-less rack rails to choose from, so take the time to determine which is best for you. There are no shortcuts to finding the right rack solutions, you have to put in due-diligence in order to see what it is you really need for your business and ultimate effectiveness and workability.

Katrina is a leader in the IT industry custom solution and innovative ideas as a product specialist for rack solutions.

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