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Matt Brunk
Matt Brunk is the Director of IT for a south Florida health care firm. He has worked in past roles...
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Matt Brunk | November 12, 2012 |

 
   

Zapped! Sing this Tune

Zapped! Sing this Tune Power protection tips and folk songs on a campus deployment.

Power protection tips and folk songs on a campus deployment.

One payoff that you can count on to net you savings is whole-panel (electrical) power protection. These devices come in many models, but the core specification of UL's requirements for Surge Protection Devices (SPDs) is under UL 1449 3rd Generation that I wrote about in Hardening Your Infrastructure.

Recently, one of our campus sites installed 3-phase Leviton SPDs on all the school's electrical subpanels. Protecting the whole panel against surges and transients is the battle against the 70% of all root causes of power damage from internal infrastructure.

According to APC:

"The majority of all power disruptions originate from within your facility during the course of normal, everyday operation. Because these internally generated surges are typically smaller in magnitude than external events such as lightning and utility problems, they often go undetected."

When we originally installed an IP-PBX in 2000, a whole-panel protector in the computer lab was already installed, and this is why we think that 12-year-old PBX is still in operation today.

Anything outside the computer lab was seemingly fair game, since the subpanels serving all the other devices didn't have SPDs.

Now, a whole-panel SPD doesn't negate the need for the UPS or SPDs. We use rack-mounted SPDs from ITW Linx for another layer of filtering at the equipment side.

Losses due to lightning aren't always preventable, however losses due to the 70% of power issues being dirty power supplies and transients caused by internal gear is something worth considering.

Unsolicited, one of the school's students, Samantha, came up with an adaption to a children's folk song, Mrs. Murphy's Chowder. The updated song, entitled, "Mrs. Durfee's Power" nails down the issues. Mrs. Durfee is the computer lab instructor and was at the school when we installed the first IP-PBX.

Mrs. Durfee's Power

Won't you bring back,
Won't you bring back,
Mrs. Durfee's power!

It was raining.
Power fading.
Every half an hour.

Now computers won't turn on.

 Server's toast, our system's gone.
Thunder knocked out
Mrs. Durfee's power!

There was lightning flashing
Servers crashing
Routers, switches
Failing all around.

Modems broadband
Cables can't stand
Sudden surges
Power strips unground.
Data transfer rate
Can't communicate
E-mail, IM
Messages unfound.
Packets firewall
Yes we've lost them all
Lightning struck, the power down!

Won't you bring back,
Won't you bring back,
Mrs. Durfee's power!
It was raining.
Power fading.
Every half an hour.

Teachers can't read their e-mail
Try to call to no avail.
Cause the storm's cut
Mrs. Durfee's power!



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