Beginners Guide to Server Racks

What is a Server Rack?

A server rack is a rack specifically designed to hold and organize IT equipment. Many operations require more than one piece of hardware to perform their necessary functions. Stacking servers and other IT equipment in a rack helps keep thing organized and makes it easier to control airflow.

19 inch rack

42U Server Rack Cabinet from RackSolutions
A 42U Cabinet from RackSolutions

What is a Server Rack Cabinet?

A server rack cabinet holds IT equipment just as a normal rack does, but it is typically enclosed on all sides. This means that it has doors in the front and rear of the rack and walls on each side.

People choose to use enclosed racks for many reasons. Firstly, they add extra security against thieves or accidental damage. Second, it is sometimes easier to control airflow when both sides are covered, but this can be done on an open frame rack using side panels. Lastly, if the rack is going to be in a relatively public area, cabinets might offer better aesthetics.

What is a Server Rack Used For?

A server rack is used to house and organize IT equipment in a manner that is best for the optimization of the equipment and utilization of floor space.

 

What is a “U” Space?

A U space (sometimes called a Rack Unit or RU) is a means of measurement for IT equipment. One single U space is equivalent to 1.75 inches. Hole spacing for a standard 19” wide rack is cut in groups of three holes, this three-hole group is defined as a one U space.

Diagram explaining a rack unit

What is a Server?

A server is a device designed specifically to process requests from other programs and devices and deliver that data via the internet or local network. Servers provide many different functions including data sharing or making various computations for clients. In its most basic definition, a server is a high functioning, high powered machine that pulls and pushes data between the itself and clients.

What is a Rack-Mounted Server?

Most server chassis are designed to be able to mount on a rack. This is because many people need multiple pieces of IT equipment to operate and it’s easier to manage if condensed into a single space. Tower servers do exist but even they can be flipped on their side and still meet the 19″ width standard needed to be mounted in a server.

Summary
Beginners Guide to Server Racks
Article Name
Beginners Guide to Server Racks
Description
A server rack is a rack specifically designed to hold and organize IT equipment. The industry standard server rack has a 19” front panel and comes in three standard widths: 19”, 23”, 24”.
Author
Publisher Name
RackSolutions
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eia 19 standards