Friday, January 18, 2013

Where's the DVR?

Have you ever walked on to a crime scene to retrieve video evidence, only to find a server room full of gear. Where's the DVR? To which one of those components do you connect to retrieve your data? What do you document?

According to Anthony Caputo, The standardized rack-mounted form factor can be open – simply a few rails and a floor panel; it can be partially enclosed; or it can be fully enclosed within a cabinet under lock and key for additional security. A fully enclosed lockable rack, securely fastened to the floor and/or walls, severely restricts physical access by unauthorized personnel.

Standard rack-mounted computing implementations can be custom designed and built using various types and configurations and/or multiples of 1-U components. The standard 1-U unit is 19″ (482.6 mm) wide and 1.75″ (44.45 mm) tall. The most common rack-mounted computing form factor platform is based around a 42-U configuration, which means that a 42-U rack is capable of housing a maximum of 42 individual 1-U units.

There are many types of 1-U devices including network accessed storage (NAS), switches and routers, firewalls, power strips, uninterrupted power supplies (UPS), or even an LCD monitor and keyboard that neatly fold away. The multiple 1-U computers (servers and archivers) can be accessed using a keyboard, video, and monitor (KVM) switch, which allows access to each computer with the click of a button or a couple of keystrokes.

Additional rack-mounted options include lockable sliding rails, which allow a variety of equipment to slide in and out of sight without disconnecting it from the system. Rack-mounted equipment also provides easy access to the rear of the units, which may include inputs and outputs, power, and hardwired connectivity.

You're often better off asking for assistance from the tech that maintains the equipment. They might not know how to retrieve the data, but they should know which computer does what.

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