Networking

Setting Up a Small Business Server Room

Some small businesses may be wary of relying on third-party online service providers for their business data storage. It can be relatively simple for these organizations to set up their own server room instead.

Paul Mah writes, “Bringing IT in-house and setting up dedicated on-premises servers can be intimidating for a small business, especially given the recent focus on online services. Moreover, resources designed to help tend to assume a medium-sized or enterprise installation, which may not necessarily work well for setting up a small server room or even a closet for a branch office.

“With some understanding of the basics, though, setting up your own server room for your small business network need not be an arcane process. Here are some tips for getting started.

“Rack-mount equipment makes sense. It’s not uncommon for small businesses to begin operation by stacking server hardware and network appliances on a desk or shelf. Though such a deployment is inexpensive, the pile of equipment invariably expands into an unmanageable mess with the growth of the company. Exposed equipment is also completely open to physical tampering and is a ticking time bomb for accidents such as coffee spills, dust, or even workers tripping over wires.

“However, rack-mount equipment is designed specifically to properly house this type of hardware. While these tend to be pricier than their non-rack-mount equivalents, it’s arguable that being easier to manage far exceeds the cost premium. In addition, shelves and drawers designed for mounting onto the server rack are widely available; these let racks work with non-rack-mount appliances as necessary.”

Read on for more tips for setting up your own server room.