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UK heatwave strains servers

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The heat wave under which the UK is wilting could have an adverse effect on network and server equipment.

Hosting firm Interxion - who we congratulate on being the first IT firm to get a news angle out of Britain's red hot, hot summer - is warning that unwelcome outages will result if equipment is allowed to overheat.

An obvious point, perhaps, but one worth making again as the UK basks in unprecedently high temperatures. Sunday witnessed the highest recorded UK temperatures 38.1°C (100.6°F). For British sysadmins this represents uncharted territory.

Interxion is advising firms to check that the ambient temperature around server cabinets does not exceed 22°C, otherwise they risk major malfunctions due to overheating and high humidity.

Manufacturers always advise of the maximum temperature at which their equipment can run. However, Interxion has found that equipment performance can deteriorate even before this temperature is reached. Above a certain threshold, network and server life can even decrease by as much as 50 per cent for every 2°C temperature rise.

"Much like people, IT equipment suffers fatigue as the temperature begins to rise," said Interxion's MD, Anthony Foy. "To prevent their networks from slowing down - or even falling over - businesses need to continually monitor and control the temperature of their IT cabinets."

As well as monitoring the temperature of servers, Interxion is advising that businesses implement back-up cooling systems in case primary systems become overloaded and fail. ®

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Whew! What a scorcher!

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