Replacement parts

Do you guys keep backup parts for your main servers, like motherboards, power supplies, etc?  Or do you just buy an exact duplicate and keep it in reserve?
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Thomas GrassiSystems AdministratorCommented:
We use to keep supplies but they always get outdated too fast.

Then and now we have duplicate Servers  in place.

We are planning to move toward setting up VM in the cloud for our backup and disaster recovery.

Have duplicate hardware is costly and takes up space.

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Cliff GaliherCommented:
None of the above. First, if the data is important, white-box servers is an invitation for trouble. You just can't get the level of testing that Dell, HP, Lenovo, Fujitsu, and on and on, nor the stringency of requirements that they mist pass tl earn windows server or redhat Linux certification.

And all lf those come with great warranties. I can get a replacement power supply drop shipped, usually same day. And I'm in a rural part of the U.S.

In larger environments or environments where HA is important, I'll set up a cluster. And sure, that technically falls under the "duplicate server" concept. But they aren't being kept in reserved. They are actively being used and providing compute capacity. And if one fails, the other nodes can take the load, at reduced performance levels, for the amount of time it takes to get the replacement part in the failed node.

I've been able to build a reliable cluster for less than I've seen a single large virtualized white-box server go for due to economies of scale and extra labor that white-box ended up costing to overcome unexpected incompatibilities in selected hardware I only wee white-box in shops trying to (exploitatively) keep margins high, or in *very* large datacenters where they have standardized their custom platform (a la Facebook) which really doesn't even fit the white-box description anymore.
i would say there is no general answer for this, you really have to create a business continuity plan with your CEO, CIO or whoever can speak in behalf of the money making business.

i mean, do you only have 1 server type or have 1 ibm server, 2 hp etc... are these old server where you really need to have that spare part because the timeline till a new one get delivered is high etc etc...

so much questions, what happens if someting is failing, what reaction time does business need, what have you to do to solve the problem in that timeline and based on that you can decide if you keep spareparts or not.

surely if the business tells you they need a really really high available solution and not even a hour of downtime is acceptable because so much money gets lost then you really should maybe keep some spareparts or even think of a redundant datacenter on a different location...

for me i don't like to have spareparts laying around, dead money and is just wasting space, i know i can provide a solution in the needed timeframe and thats fine.
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Windows Server 2008

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