One of greatest things about the evolution of the server industry is the (attempt at) engineering out mistakes. You can only go so far to remove the human element in systems administration, but HP’s doing a really good job with the latest release of their Gen8 server line.
The three features I like the most are the CPU Smart Socket Guide, the Do Not Remove light, and the iPDU system (Intelligent power distribution unit – iPDU).
The CPU Smart Socket guide was co-developed with Intel to remove the too common mishap of bending pins on the motherboard when installing a CPU. Here’s a picture of the CPU in the cradle.
The Do Not Remove light comes into effect when disks in a RAID set fail and removing the wrong drive from the server (as you can have many RAID sets) will result in data loss. You can see the indicator in all of it’s glorious action below.
The iPDU kit works best as a combination of 3 pieces – the special power supply in the server, the special iPDU and Insight Control. The whole system working together accurately measures power utilization, maps servers (Gen8 w/ Platinum power supplies) to PDU ports and verifies redundancy. No more outages because you accidentally plugged both power supplies into the same PDU.
Removing human error from the datacenter, especially the large datacenter, will cut down on outages, data loss, unnecessary parts replacements and hair loss. Well, maybe not hair loss (but we can hope).
The old saying is that ‘you can’t fix stupid’. Well, HP hasn’t exactly done that, but they’ve certainly put up bigger warning signs so you’d have to be stupid on purpose.
Full. From great conversations, vendor product information, BBQ and cakeballs. Tech Field Day 7 was quite the event. I was able to meet a few people whom I’ve either followed on twitter or read their blogs for a while who have been influential in my development as an infrastructure professional. I also met others I was not familiar with who have already informed my thinking, and I can only assume that they will continue to be a great resource of experience and knowledge.
Speaking of the delegates, I want to thank Stephen Fosket and Matt Simmons for gathering such a great and diverse group of infrastructure professionals. Also, as one of the younger delegates, both in terms of age and experience, I want to thank the delegates for listening and taking the time to explore topics that were new for me.
I’m fortunate to be able to head straight to vacation right after TFD. Rather than head back to the crazy of work, I’ll (hopefully) be able to better process what just happened in Austin. As I think back through the presentations and conversations, there’s a lot of processing to do.
Just got word Tuesday that I’ll have the honor to be a delegate for Gestalt IT’s Tech Field Day 7 focusing on Datacenter IT Infrastructure. The event seeks to bring together some of the industries great thinkers, authors, bloggers, influencers and vendors to engage each other. You can read more about the Tech Field Day at their site to get an idea of what these guys are about.
As excited as I am to get some pretty good face time with a few great vendors, I’m stoked about being able to meet some people in the IT community whom I’ve admired for quite a while. These are guys whose resources I’ve been reading for a while for a good deal of information as I’ve built up my knowledge and experience specifically in the virtualization and storage arenas. They are, in my mind, rock stars in the Datacenter IT world. I’m humbled to be brought in as a newer member of this event along side some veterans. The complete list of delegates is:
The event this time will be in Austin, Texas on August 11th and 12th. The sponsors are Dell (it’s Austin, after all), Veeam, SolarWinds and Symantec. All vendors that I either currently use or have used in the past. Looking forward to our discussions, hands on experience and feedback with them.
Thank you to Stephen Fosket
and Matt Simmons
for organizing this and to the vendors for their sponsorship and belief that this type of interaction with the community is worthwhile.