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Physical Relocation of midrange servers

Posted on 2004-08-18
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
My department has been commanded to move a bunch of mid-range servers and ancillary devices, a few at a time, typically between 1 and 3U, to a new server room a couple of miles away.  This command comes without a budget, i.e. we can't hire IBM to move them all for us.

I am not a mover, nor am I a "hardware guy."  I'm a programmer turned PM who needs help figuring out how to safely move these from point a to point b.  The good news is we have transport, so it looks like just a matter of packaging.  A 1U machine is about 24"x40"x2" so that rules out going to Sam Ash to buy a bunch of gig cases, but a sturdy, foam-lined case seems to be along the lines of what we need, I just don't know how or where to find these.

I need some creative ideas on with what/from where and how to pack these things up, preferably from people who have done this sort of thing on the cheap.  By cheap, I mean somewhere between cardboard with foam peanuts and hiring IBM.

This is a wacky request for this audience, and I appreciate your time.  I'll happily award points outside of this question if I get ideas from a few different people.
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Question by:CleffedUp
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7 Comments
 
LVL 36

Assisted Solution

by:grblades
grblades earned 400 total points
ID: 11835563
Hi CleffedUp,
I would just buy a few sheets of foam or a large roll of bubble wrap and hire a van. They wont move if you drive carefully and if it is only a couple of miles it wont take long.
If you really want a case then a large suitcase would probably be a suitable size.
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LVL 10

Accepted Solution

by:
Dynamic1 earned 1200 total points
ID: 11836121
I highly reccoment these pellican cases i have used them before and sun Micro sends me drives in these cases
http://www.all-pelican-cases-4-less.com/detail_pelican_1600.html
Lool around they have a similar one on sale for 40 something dollars foam filled virtually indestructable water proof and can be used again and again Worth looking into. Let me know what you think I also use them on my boat LOL but they are mad to be indestructable and protect what is inside from virtually everything. Thanks ,Joe
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LVL 10

Assisted Solution

by:Dynamic1
Dynamic1 earned 1200 total points
ID: 11836151
http://www.all-pelican-cases-4-less.com/detail_pelican_1620.html here is another larger one. BTW the foam can be taken out to fit in sections and reinstalled look around they have about 30 different sizes.
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LVL 7

Assisted Solution

by:LimeSMJ
LimeSMJ earned 400 total points
ID: 11837758
Just my 2 cents...

I did a move like this a while back with some huge free standing Sun servers and 3U IBM boxes.  A couple of co-workers and I just rented a U-Haul and lined the entire van with really firm pillows and blankets.  We opted for pillows and blankets cause we couldn't find foam and the bubble wrap just popped under the weight of the servers.... Your 1U servers should be good with bubble wrap but those 3U'rs are gonna be heavy.  Make sure that you don't stack the machines as some rack mount server cases have very thin tops that can collapse.

Drive slow - let them honk behind you...
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:CleffedUp
ID: 11881267
Thanks for your comments, all.  As it happens, the footprints are actually up to 30"x30".  So far no luck, including those pelican cases, but I do appreciate the comments thus far.  Perhaps with the pelican info, I may have found a couple of keywords to help my search.  Any other ideas?
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:CleffedUp
ID: 12063619
Thanks for your help, all.  The products at the pelican site put me most in the right direction in finding what I needed.  Eventually searches for "bulk containers" and "packing foam" which was cut to size got me what I needed.
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LVL 7

Expert Comment

by:LimeSMJ
ID: 12066445
Hope your move went well.
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