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krispy89

Workplace Comms Rooms

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I've been at my current place of employment for close to a year now, and when I got there, the place was an absolute mess.

 

I'm talking about really dangerous conditions, OH&S type stuff.

 

Monitors on the floor, unpacked toner cartridges, desktops/laptops server systems/blades etc.

 

Now while I have made a considerable effort to make a start on it, my position has required the better part of my attention for some time now.

 

The past two weeks or so have signaled that something needs to be done. So my manager and the networking guys have been working on and off to get this room to an acceptable standard.

 

When I got wind that the guys were coming in tomorrow morning, I made a dash for it and worked my arse off from 3:30 to 7pm tonight.

And here's the proof of my efforts:

 

Posted Image

 

This was from 90 minutes work in the comms room itself, removing drives from server blade systems (Thank fuck I had a mini electric drill nearby).

 

But it wasn't over, because we have a corner not far from my desk that is just used for storage space, desktops, faulty/dead laptops etc. and as a requirement, we are to remove all HD's and properly ensure their destruction.

 

This was from 2 hours work tonight from 5-7pm.

Posted Image

 

To sum up, the way that this was managed before I came shocked me, I seriously thought in some cases that I would trip, fall and break a non-specified part of my anatomy.

 

So I put it to the Atomicans out there:

 

What's your comms room like?

 

Pristine and organised like this?

Posted Image

 

Or a horror show like this?

Posted Image

 

 

Time to spill the beans. GO!

 

POTM thread for March 2012 :)

Edited by krispy89

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Mine is more like the first... Everything has its place, and that's where it is. All the fibres are neatly laid out in trays keeping them tidy, copper is kept to a minimum...

 

 

 

But... it isn't used very often, really... I'm in there most days, sure... but the amount of ongoing work in there is minimal.

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Mine is organized it was a disaster when I took it over. No labeled ports, patching was disgusting and people were using the room for storage which was not on.

 

Coms rooms at no point should be used for storage or even a work space its an environment that works best when left along after its running with minimal access. Its good though that you've got a bit of initiative to get in there and clean it up though just dont let yourself become the guy who always cleans up after everyone else. I had a habit of cleaning up the teams work space because I couldn't stand the mess and the fact that there was no room to work in a massive room with shit everywhere.

 

Do yourself a favor and don't let it happen again.

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Mine is organized it was a disaster when I took it over. No labeled ports, patching was disgusting and people were using the room for storage which was not on.

I think that mine becoming a change room for another team was the tipping point when our Regional CFO came in one day.

 

There was a used towel hanging on the open server cabinet door for fuck sake!

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Or a horror show like this?

Posted Image

OH JESUS CHRIST...noooo...

 

Try to find a faulty port / cable in that. No colour identification.

 

I'll post some pics.

Edited by Genders

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I think that mine becoming a change room for another team was the tipping point when our Regional CFO came in one day.

 

There was a used towel hanging on the open server cabinet door for fuck sake!

Or a couple of the staff where bonking each other in their and the towel was to "clean up"?

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Here we go.

 

Primary comms rack

Posted Image

 

Cabling rules

Posted Image

 

Level 2 comms rack - This needs serious work, it's run out of ties between the switches and the old 110 frame. Hence the cables hanging between the wall and rack.

Posted Image

 

We have a storage room just off the service desk work area which we can close. It's jammed floor to ceiling with stuff. We just close the door when HR comes down. It's only us that go into the room, so we know how to navigate it and avoid injury.

Edited by Genders

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Ours is quite tidy, except for a box of old cables on the floor.

 

I might spend a half hour today sorting through them and throwing out the unneeded.

 

We have a shitload of cat5 cable that came out of our library's comms room, and I frankly don't want to roll them up to store them, as we use cat6 in here now..

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I don't use the comms room for general storage, and I discourage anyone else from doing it too. If they want to store stuff in the Comms room, at least make sure it's all on trolleys, so we can wheel it out if we need to.

 

My workroom on the other hand, is always a complete mess, I've always been meaning to tidy up, honest.

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Mine was a nightmare when i got here.

 

It's still a nightmare but at least we have a sort of colour sceme:

 

Red = External network

Orange = VPN network

Green = LAN (Server backbone)

Purple = iSCSI

 

The main issue is that for every server on rails there is another 3 without stacked on top.

 

So that means when a server is replaced it's just turned off an another is added to the stack.

 

Poor planning and data center organisation makes baby jesus cry.

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All our cables are blue ... FUN times (OK, a random grey, yellow and red one)

Edited by Jeruselem

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Had the removalists come in today, they managed to take about 80% of our current mess.

 

Got more in store for them tomorrow.

 

At least I can now see some space available for more crap to pile up in the future :P

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Nice work buddy. You should come work for HP need people who are proactive here.

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What's your comms room like?

No idea. That's the IT department's problem! :P

 

Rob.

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Removal guys came back today to finish off the room.

The guy that was there yesterday, told me that they had taken over 1.3 tonnes of equipment from our office.

 

I'll get some pics of the clean comms room on Monday. Was in a mad dash to catch up with colleagues tonight at the local pub (which is the closest too, just two doors down)

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Nice work buddy. You should come work for HP need people who are proactive here.

Im doing my work experience at the HP datacenter in a month or 2

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Getting the removalists in for the final time today (Hopefully) they've already taken roughly 1.7 tonnes of equipment since last Thursday, this load will tip the 2 tonne mark, with hard drives/office printers etc.

 

The room is in a MUCH better state than when I first started, I'm actually quite proud of myself for getting the job started and finishing it today.

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@krispy89 are the removalists contracted to sanitise/destroy any media, or did you do that before-hand?

 

 

 

Our DCs are very tidy, built and maintained to standards. Structured cabling helps a lot. Comms rooms and branch sites vary, but mostly pretty good.

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Wiring at my work is not the greatest. I can only dream of racks and patch panels lol

 

This building was not designed in any way with wiring in mind, so there's no patch panels in the server room and no wall sockets at the users end, just wires poking out of holes in walls.

Pretty much was like this when I started. Has basically stayed the same since re doing it properly would be a lot of time effort down time and money.

 

As you can see I've labelled all the cables I can, that took some time working out. I've also used green for Gbit cables that link to other on site switches and yellow (ran out of green) for the Gbit connection between the two switches there.

 

I've drawn up and maintain a network topology diagram though too so that also helps manage the chaos.

 

Posted Image

 

Edit:

Those 8-port dlink switches are Gbit ones. I recently purchased a 24-port Gbit switch to replace those with. Should mean faster, more stable connections I guess (not that it was an issue) but also mainly to tidy up some of that mess and give expansion room.

Edited by mark84

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@krispy89 are the removalists contracted to sanitise/destroy any media, or did you do that before-hand?

They get done by the same company, they are legally obligated to destroy all data on the hard drives.

 

The project is now officially finished, signed off on the last pickup this afternoon.

 

The comms room is nice and tidy, as well as the basement where there is now nothing on the floor.

 

I'm really proud of myself for getting this done, helping out, signing off and seeing through the project.

It's been a long time coming 6 months+, but we can finally move around in that space we now call a comms room. (Upgraded from being a dumping ground)

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POTM thread for March 2012 :)

 

I'll probably post pics or a vid early to mid next week, that's when nobody else is in the office :)

 

Fun Trivia: One of our users needed some data off his old laptop, a Fujitsu Lifebook circa 2000.

 

Trouble was, there were thirty or so laptops of the same model, and I had already removed all the drives.

 

So I had to go back and check ALL the drives with this fellow:

USB to SATA/IDE Combo Kit

 

The drives were due to be taken away on that day, so this user doesn't realise how lucky he was.

Edited by krispy89

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For the purpose of this thread, none of these pictures are mine. They are not of my workplace. They were not taken by me. They were all found on Google Image Search. Everything I say is hypothetical and I'm lying if I say any different.

 

Starting from the basement...

 

Basement MDF. I have personally run and rerun every single one of those jumpers at least 5 times.

 

Posted Image

 

My baby. Ericsson MD110. Upgraded to run MX software. Replacement cost ~500k. Cisco replacement cost ~1.4m

 

Posted Image

 

Ground floor comms. All outlets loop through Krone blocks, so if we need to splice anything in, its easier (and prettier) than a patch panel splitter.

 

Posted Image

 

Ground Floor Data. Smallest rack in the building. I only repatched everything just before Christmas, so its still semi-pretty.

 

Posted Image

 

1st Floor Krone. Again, its all Sockets > Krone > Patch Panel

 

Posted Image

 

1st Floor Data. Most traffic in the building is on 1st, so this is probably the busiest rack in the building.

 

Posted Image

 

2nd Floor is almost a carbon copy of 1st, so its not really worth showing identical photos...

 

 

Server Room. There are 2 rows identical to this, the things I'm allowed to touch in here amount to about 10% of the total of what is going on.

 

Posted Image

 

Rear of the clusterfuck of cables behind all this.

 

Posted Image

 

Someone elses lovely fibre patch job. This has been like this for at least 2 years, so I'm going to assume whoever did it was pleased with their work.

 

Posted Image

 

 

'

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