Critical Section

Murphy and UPS

Thursday,  06/16/05  08:05 AM

Last night at 1:00AM we had a power failure.  Not a big one, just a blip; just enough for my alarm clock to make a funny noise, which woke me up, and to start blinking its display at me.  I looked around, realized what happened, hit snooze to reset the clock, and went back to sleep.

MGE Pulsar ES8Unbeknownst to me, this little teeny blip fried my UPS.  Upon walking into my [home] office this morning, all my servers and my network were down.  And my UPS had a flashing orange light, and was making a soft beeping noise.  I tried hitting reset - no good - then tried power-cycling - no good.  Finally I moved all the power cables directly to line and brought everything back up.  Fortunately everything did come right back up, no problems (thank you, Red Hat).

Now if I didn't have a UPS, this teeny little blip might have been ignored.  Then again, it might have crashed everything, but since everything comes back up when power is restored, maybe everything would have come back up.  It might have caused 5 minutes of downtime while the servers rebooted.  But since I did have a UPS, I was down for seven hours.  Ah, the wonders of technology (thank you, Murphy).

BTW, this isn't a knock on MGE, which made my UPS.  I've had this unit for six years, and it has been under load that whole time.  So it was probably due for replacement.

I just wonder how many hours of uptime have been saved by UPS units over the years, vs. how many hours have been lost.  Is it actually worth it to have a UPS?  I don't know.  Anyway I'm going to get a new one, this is a shopping opportunity!  (thank you, Fry's :)


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