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Server Room Overheated

By pnfor ·
Server room overheated this weekend due to a faulty AC unit. I am unable to confirm the exact tempatures but I estimate that the room was over 100 degrees for about 24 hours. In the room is several servers, routers, firewall, switches, and SANs drive.

The only peice of equipment that complained about the heat was the SANS drive array. It reported that it had overheated and had taken corrective action (spinning down the disks). It had amber lights indicating trouble, I rebooted and all is good now. the other equipment did not have the ability to report.

My question: Although everything is still working perfectly I am paranoid about the invisible damage this has caused that I won't see but in random lockups and failing equipment over a period of time.

My company wants to know if we need to put together an assessment of the posssible damage/cost of replacement all the equipment for insurance purposes. I am unsure at this point if this is nessasary. I can see the reasoning behind this but at the same time I am hesitant to replace everything. Any comments would be appreciated.

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Damage assessment

by timwalsh In reply to Server Room Overheated

Unfortunately, in the situation you find yourself, where the heat did not cause outright failure of equipment, trying to conduct any sort of ACCURATE assessment is going to prove difficult. While it is an accepted fact that prolonged exposure to heat will at the very least affect a system's longevity, trying to determine how much effect the heat had is difficult to say the least. Start by digging through documentation for the various components to see what the quoted operating parameters are for temperature.

Unfortunately, there is no real way to ascertain that exposure to X degrees over and above the maximum operating temperature results in Y amount of damage. You know its useful lifespan is probably diminished, but you can't qauntify this in weeks/months/years. You might be able to get some help from the vendors, but they probably don't know exactly themselves.

Put together your list of replacement costs. If anything fails in the next 3-6 months (and it wasn't old already), it's LIKELY that heat helped hasten its demise. Trying to prove it (to an insurance company's satisfaction) might be difficult though. A lot might depend on whether the heat exposure was a little or a lot over the manufacturer's quoted maximum operating temperature.

Hope this helps.

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Thanks Tim

by pnfor In reply to Damage assessment

I agree with your comments and thank you for reaffirming what I already believe to be the situation.

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