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Myke

APC PowerChute & Smart-UPS

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Due to a recent and unfortunate event (the building's cleaning crew accidently tripped our breaker and all power to the server room was lost; sadly I watched everything die before I could figure out what exactly happened and none of the servers were properlly shut down), we have been investigating the best software to use to power down our servers in the event of a power failure.

 

We have 4 seperate Smart-UPS's and have installed the APC software (PowerChute Business Edition) on one server for each UPS, which is connected via serial. However, we have multiple servers connected to a single UPS and want each server to be properly shut down, not just the server with PowerChute. APC claims that you can load an agent on the other servers which will be shut down by the PowerChute Server which communicates with the UPS. However, when you go to install the agent on the other servers, it demands that the agent be able to communicate with the UPS, but there is only one serial port (and no USB ports) on the UPS!

 

How are we supposed to get the other servers to properlly shut down in the event of a power failure? If it happens at 2 a.m., no one would be able to respond in time to manually take care of it. APC has offered no help with this and they're FAQs seem to avoid this question. Anyone experienced with this software and/or situation to help me out? Essentially, we want all of our servers to safetly shut down when there is a power failure. Thanks in advance.

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I've looked into Network Shutdown, but it requires that each UPS unit have a NIC installed. We're trying to avoid that.

 

The way I see it, it makes sense to have a few servers plugged into the UPS and have one of those servers act as the PowerChute server, which will communicate with the UPS. All other servers plugged into the UPS would have an agent installed on them, and those agents only communicate with the appropriate PowerChute server. If the PowerChute server detects a power failure and needs to shut down, it will shut down the agents associated with that particular UPS.

 

Maybe I'm wishing for too much.

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