How to Monitor Server Room Temperature

How are you monitoring the temperature in your server rooms? Does the level of protection you're providing for your servers reflect the investment you made them? You have thousands or millions of dollars on your server racks, and poor temperature monitoring will let it all go up in smoke. If you're building a new data center, don't fall into this trap - deploy a top-quality data center monitoring system right from the start.

But as expensive as your servers are, there's even more at stake here. How much is your uptime worth to you? When your servers are down, how much money are you losing every minute? Again, a good quality monitoring device will pay for itself many times over by protecting you from just one server room disaster.

As an example, let's take a look at the TempDefender IT. This compact unit will monitor critical environmental levels that can threaten your server room or data center.

8 discrete inputs can be used to accept binary "on or off" data from motion sensors, UPS systems, smoke detectors, flood sensors, AC power failed sensors, door entry sensors, and other similar sensors.

The TempDefender IT can also monitor analog sensors. One build option includes eight traditional analog inputs that accept either 0-5 VDC or 4-20 milliamps (mA). Another includes just four of these analog inputs and includes four additional "digital sensor inputs." These are a more advanced interface, commonly known as "one wire" sensor ports, that have seen widespread use in server room temperature monitoring applications.

But don't make the mistake of thinking that you're limited to four sensors on the four digital sensor inputs. In fact, you can support over a dozen sensors from these four ports by daisy chaining several sensors together. These new digital sensors are auto-databased into the TempDefender, making set up fast and easy. Data center monitoring will only occur after your monitoring system is actually set up, so this auto-databasing function can be a big help.

Sensor values, including server room temperature, can be visually trended across time to satisfy detailed reporting and/or root cause analysis requirements. This visual display is contained within the TempDefender IT's built-in web interface, making it in easy way to monitor all of the important environmental and equipment variables in your server room.

The TempDefender IT can also perform advanced function that typically performed only by much larger systems: it can actually load HTTP web pages to see if they are served correctly from your server room. This is useful both for public Internet websites and for internal intranet sites. You can set up automatic notification if a word or phrase on the page fails to load or, in a worst-case scenario, a 404 error is received.

This type of HTTP page loading is a much better monitoring solution than simple ICMP pinging. How many times has your server been totally capable of responding to a simple ping, even though your server can't load a single web page?

Data Center Cooling Monitoring Practices

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