Life of a Sysadmin

The occassional trials and tribulations of a jack of all tr ades sysadmin in a startup in Silicon Valley

January 2007

Big Red Button, or Must not touch

We are nearly through with building out a new server room; new racks, power, and HVAC. One of the last things completed was installation of a big red button.

That button will kill all of the outlets above the racks and will send a signal to the UPSes (Remote UPS Power Off Device) to have them turn off immediately. Soon it will be set-up such that the circuit will be trigged if the sprinkler system in the room goes off. The theory here being that it's better to deal with wet improperly turned off systems than wet, likely shorted out improperly turned off systems. Oh, and perhaps it makes an electrical fire less likely.

The button of course screams out to be pushed. I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to push it before we had all of our servers using the power it controls (very anticlimatic just turning off a fan and radio though) . Unfortunately, it was not installed in the best of locations. Well, at least it's in a plastic case and in a limited access room.

update 2007-08-15: a reader sent a link to STI as a source for all sorts of big buttons and such.

[2007/01/15 | /misc | permanent link]