The APC Calculator is a good tool to get an idea of server run times for specifying a UPS: UPS Selector Sizing Applications
We'd like to purchase a UPS for our servers. We have two of these, both HP Proliant ML-310 (Spec sheets here)
According to that page, I think they are rated at 410W each.
We'd like a UPS that would allow us enough time for some sort of automated shut-down (so we'd also need the relevant software).
Anyone recommend anything?
swpmre (9th September 2010)
No problem glad I could help.
Forget exactly which model we're running, but our Proliants run three to a single 1500VA UPS and get about 7 or 8 minutes of time before they shut down. The software that comes with the APC UPS we use lets us do a graceful shutdown as well - there's a USB cable that goes from the UPS to one of the servers, a program runs on that server that monitors the UPS, and when there's a certain amount of time left it initiates a full shutdown of the other two servers before downing itself. It also sends e-mails out as soon as the power wobbles which has saved me no end of times
Try Eaton Ellipse UPS - seem good value.
We have three servers connected to a UPS but only one of them talks directly to the UPS and in order to get the others to shutdown it sends a command over the network. Problem is, some of the switches aren't connected to a UPS yet, so this isn't really any good. There must be some software out there that can talk to all three servers and send a message down the cable which goes to each?
APC and PowerWare UPS Systems I have used in the past and have not had any issues, the software they both come with as probably most is useful for gracefully shutting down the servers. you can set it up also so if you say have 3 power outages through the night and it gets to a point where there won't be enough power in the battery to shut them down again it will just shut them down.
I know NET-CTRL http://www.net-ctrl.co.uk have a range of UPS Systems they have on the cards, might be worth talking to them as they look pretty good kit and reasonable prices when spoke to them at BETT 2011.
You can either fit a network card into the ups but your switch needs to be on it. You can also get a card with 2 serial ports or a serial expander.
The expander ports only seem to support 940-0020 simple signalling, from what I understand from the documentation on there? At the moment the software is set to smart signalling which could explain why...?
Interface Expander with 2 UPS Communication Cables SmartSlot Card
UPS For Server Cupboard
I went for a bunch of APC Smart-UPS 2200VA at £589.00 (6 months ago) as those were the best value and easiest to install - not rack-mounted so you don't have to mess around with rack rails, you can just plonk them on a shelf and (just about) light enough to lug up a set of stairs by yourself (would recommend a stair-climbing sack-truck, mind). Anything larger you tend to have to get installed and grounded, etc, by an electrician, which is just extra messing around.
Our switch is on a different ring to the servers in our server room so the software just runs on one server, and at a certain battery-remaining mark, it runs a cmd file that just has lines like
for each of the other servers plugged into that UPS, then a couple of minutes after that is run, it starts shutting itself down.Code:START "" shutdown -s -f -m \\SERVER -t 3
Probably not much help as an answer, I know. Sorry!
If they don't have a network card then presumably there is one cable which goes from the unit to a server and then does this server run software which can then be used to shutdown the other servers? Is this software free? And is it flexible enough to say "Initiate shutdown when UPS has 10 mins of charge left"?
Also, I assume that a unmanaged UPS (i.e. with no software or cable) won't let itself fully dischage and damage the Lead Acid battery?
UPS seems to be a whole field of it's own (which I have have neve really tocuhed before)!
We discovered load of old (dud) APC Smart-UPS 1400VA units (which are probably around 10 years old) which we determined just needed new batteries. So we plan purchase new batteries for these and perhaps use them for comms side, rather than servers (mainly because I am unsure of the auto shutdown), they have a serial connection, but not USB or Cat5.
Totally agree with your about floor standing verses rack mount.
Any advice/help much appreciated.
Last edited by Bruce123; 14th April 2011 at 02:25 PM.
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