I’ve had a computer rack of one kind or another (at home) for over a decade.

In the past, it was out in the garage, so heat and noise weren’t an issue. Recently, its moved into my office and things needed to change. I wanted an office that was still plesant to be in, that I could have phone calls in, and wasn’t 90°F+.

Cabinet

I’ve been a fan of APC cabinets for a while. They’re well built, and have been designed to “slot in” accessories that are useful (cable management, PDUs, etc). They also have a line of accessories that fit nicely into their racks/cabinets. They care about keeping things tidy and organized, which I think is important (probably obvious when you look at the pictures of the insides of my cabinets below). The netshelter

PDUs

Each cabinet has a APC 7902 (Switched PDU). It provides 16 switched outlets in addition to showing power load for each breaker (1 breaker for a bank of 8 outlets). The PDUs are thicker than what APC ships with, and you have to do a custom mount for them. I opted to use 4 zip ties (2 on top, 2 on bottom). Its plenty secure.

(Smart) UPS

Each cabinet has a SmartUPS SMX3000XL. Each cabinet has at least one (1) additional battery pack (We have lots of thunderstorms and frequently the power is out for 30-60m. Having to cleanup from servers that are not gracefully shutdown is annoying).

AirConsole

Nice cheap serial console that gives me 4-12 ports (currently using 4 ports: 2x for EX4200s, 2x for SRX). Offers both WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. Means I don’t have to go take a laptop and plug in to the switch or firewall if something bad happens. There is one of these in each cabinet.


Footnotes and References