CAI Managed IT Blog
How to Reduce the Noise from Your Servers
One IT problem that you may have heard about is server noise. A server unit is a noisy piece of equipment because it comes with multiple fans used to keep the machine cool. One big reason why servers are banished to their own room is because of all the noise they make. Here's what you can do to quiet your servers.
Noise-Isolating Server Racks
Server racks are a great solution to organize your server units and make them easily accessible. However, a standard server rack is not built with noise cancellation in mind. In fact, a typical server rack may even increase the decibel levels because it's nothing more than sheet metal welded into the shape of a box. Therefore, placing a noisy server unit inside of a metal rack is essentially like installing a megaphone to the back of your server unit.
One server noise-proofing measure you can take is to use a noise-isolating server rack (which is different than noise proofing). A noise-isolating rack utilizes foam-sealed front and back doors. In many cases, the noise difference between the foam-sealed doors being open and closed makes the difference if you can or can't make a phone call.
Noise-isolating server racks must have their own cooling and ventilation system, otherwise the sealed rack would essentially turn into an oven. Many noise-isolating racks use large AC fans mounted underneath the rear door which forces and filters airflow underneath the enclosure.
Don't Slow Down the Fans
In a typical noisy fan situation you would turn the fan setting down from "High" to "Low." You can do this with the fans in your own server unit, but this a very risky procedure because the fans are what's keeping your server from overheating, and an overheated server can cause serious damage to both the server's hardware and your data.
Noise Proof the Server Room
You can also renovate your server room with simple noise-proofing additions. Unless your server room was designed with noise canceling in mind, it likely has bare walls and a storage-room-feel which makes the noise worse. You can pad the walls with carpet or foam padding to absorb the sound. If nobody but the techs see the inside of your server closet, then you can even go the cheap route and attach egg cartons to the wall. One advantage that comes with soundproofing your server room is that you can advertise it as a recording studio when it comes time to sell the office building.
By decreasing the noise coming from your server room, you may find your office to be a less stressful work environment because everybody is yelling less at each other. If you would like help picking out a sound-isolating server rack for your business, or if you want to know how to remodel your server room to dampen the noise, then give CAI Managed IT a call at (800) 422-4782.