One of the great things about being a network contractor is the frequent change of employers and the different networks and infrastructure that I am introduced to. I recently was introduced to the oldest datacentre I have seen to date.
Deep inside an old looking concrete office building down winding corridors I was led into a time capsule from the 1970’s. The data hall was a dazzling shade of beige with comforting dark stain wooden panelling and beneath my feet, carpeted tiles. The room I was stood in was where the servers were kept and adjacent room the otherside of a long glass window was the workstation room. Sadly all of the old Sun Microsystems kit had long since left the room, the last piece of UNIX iron was a HP Superdome which I had missed by a few months.
Looking around the perimeter of the room were several odd addtions I had not seen before. Mechanical circular paper charts for recording temperature and humidity (Clearspan M105 hygrometers) , were all in different states disfunction, all frozen in time with the ink from the styluses leeching across the charts. ‘Redring’ wall mounted heaters; a device for raising the temperate of a datacentre? Madness! Some metal stands about 7 foot tall with mirrors on the top, I couldn’t work out what they were for. Then on the wall next to the workstation room and poster with some images and symbols I recognised.