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The Voice of the DBA

Steve Jones is the editor of and visits a wide variety of data related topics in his daily editorial. Steve has spent years working as a DBA and general purpose Windows administrator, primarily working with SQL Server since it was ported from Sybase in 1990. You can follow Steve on Twitter at

New Server

Surprisingly the DELL server showed up late Friday afternoon last week when I was expecting more of a Wed-Thur delivery this week. It was a pretty small box, only about 2/3 or so of the length I expected. Since I'd grabbed an LCD monitor as well I wasn't actually sure if I'd gotten a monitor or server and had to open the box.

It's a PowerEdge 750, which is a small 1u server, designed for web farm type environments. We got it from the Dell Outlet for a great price. US$1444 for the server, 2.4GHz, 2GB RAM, RAID 1 (2x36GB). A good deal as the cheapest servers there this week are over $2k! After checking that this was the right box, I put it in the car, planning on going Mon morning. As usual I got delayed, and that was ok since the monitor showed up the morning and I took both over yesterday afternoon.

I opened the boxes, made some room on my shelf and put the monitor in there. There's a crash cart in the data center with a monitor and keyboard, but last time I was there it was in use and I couldn't work. That's annoying, so it's why I grabbed an LCD monitor. So that went in easy and then I opened the server box and grabbed the rails, checking to be sure I had right on the right side and same for left. And ...

I figured out relatively quickly that square connectors don't fit into round holes :(

They'd come with the server and I never checked to see about the rails. DELL servers and racks are square hole by default, while I think most of the rest of the world is round. No huge deal as I have a couple servers rack mounted, so I put it on top of one of those. I hooked up power and was ready for KVM when I realized that I didn't have any more KVM cables. A few years back when my startup failed I'd lucked into an 8 port KVM and 4  cables that had been sitting in my basement until we got this site up and running.  We've grown to 5 servers now and I was out of cable. No worries, I took the ones from the KVM and used them, booting the server and starting setup. Then I was off to Microcenter for 2 new KVM cables.

I didn't get back last night, but today I hooked things up, called the firewall guy to get the new server connected, and I'm getting ready for IIS configuration as I type this.


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