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(The Register)   Leave it to Texas to deep fry anything. Like rack-mount servers. Mmmm, tasty, tasty servers   (theregister.co.uk) divider line 33
    More: Cool, Texas, deep fryers, General Teaching Council, air conditioning units, high-performance computing, Green Revolution, University of Texas  
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4874 clicks; posted to Geek » on 26 May 2012 at 3:34 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-05-26 03:43:37 PM  
That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.
 
2012-05-26 03:46:49 PM  

delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.


never mind the mess that's made by scotsmen with mars bars.
 
2012-05-26 03:48:47 PM  
the bytes are better that way
 
2012-05-26 03:49:59 PM  

delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.


I wonder if you would have the hard drives outside of the oil
 
2012-05-26 03:53:47 PM  

delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.


Tongs.
 
2012-05-26 03:55:04 PM  

hurdboy: Tongs.


would you like scsi with that
 
2012-05-26 03:57:25 PM  
*facepalm* The old mineral oil is the future gag? This shiat has been around for decades and will never catch on.
 
2012-05-26 04:19:07 PM  

styckx: *facepalm* The old mineral oil is the future gag? This shiat has been around for decades and will never catch on.


Indeed. It works for things like electrical transformers on power poles, but is kind of impractical and messy for something that needs to be serviced from time to time. I can also see the oil finding its way into the hard drives eventually.
 
2012-05-26 04:20:57 PM  

styckx: *facepalm* The old mineral oil is the future gag? This shiat has been around for decades and will never catch on.


I understand it as a gimmick for computer enthusiasts, but it must be a nightmare in an enterprise environment. I can't imagine the mess whenever you have to replace dead hardware or perform upgrades.
 
2012-05-26 04:29:48 PM  

uttertosh: delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.

never mind the mess that's made by scotsmen with mars bars.


Loses all rigidity on warm days, eh?
 
2012-05-26 04:36:18 PM  
Only place I see this as maybe being useful would be some environment where using air cooling introduces unwanted hazards, ie the military setting up a DC in the middle of a desert or something, and then you're paying for the weight penalty and hassle of all that oil. I'd expect to see more widespread use of easy install water/liquid cooling adoption before full immersion cooling.

/I swear someone "comes up" with this idea every 5 years or so
 
2012-05-26 04:41:24 PM  
You can get an idea of how messy and difficult it is to work with in this video.
 
2012-05-26 04:49:08 PM  
Remember looking at mineral oil years ago, then decided way too much effort and mess.

Could see it being useful in a server environment that stacks huge quantities of small, low cost servers wherein if one dies you literally just swap the whole server out, other than that screw having to swap a single component out.

Although I guess that can be combatted if it's purpose built, drains in the floors and special outfits.
 
2012-05-26 05:01:39 PM  
Okay, so the arguement is the savings in cooling and what not, but wouldn't you need more floor space since they can't be stacked? So this turns into and arguement of what costs more, real estate or electricity. My money is on real estate.
 
2012-05-26 05:16:23 PM  
Looks like it works great to reduce the noise of those shiatty SuperMicro 1U chassis.
 
2012-05-26 05:17:38 PM  
why not just circulate cooling fluid thru the heat sinks?
 
2012-05-26 05:33:31 PM  

Gunny Walker: Okay, so the arguement is the savings in cooling and what not, but wouldn't you need more floor space since they can't be stacked? So this turns into and arguement of what costs more, real estate or electricity. My money is on real estate.


Land and construction is a one time cost. Electricity is a forever cost.
 
2012-05-26 05:55:36 PM  
whatever happened to that 3m fluid that you could immerse electronics in and pull them out and they stayed dry?
 
2012-05-26 06:21:23 PM  

dyhchong: Could see it being useful in a server environment that stacks huge quantities of small, low cost servers wherein if one dies you literally just swap the whole server out, other than that screw having to swap a single component out.


That's what I'd think. I'm thinking the server stacks of the future will be glorified GPUs with a relatively small bit of NVRAM attached, a network port, and no other peripherals. Those kinds of racks would be ideal for this.

albuquerquehalsey: why not just circulate cooling fluid thru the heat sinks?


Because that won't get the energy savings. One big pump circulating has much lower loss than lots of little pumps, and a big optimized heat sink is more effective than lots of little heat sinks (meaning you need to circulate less fluid overall).
 
2012-05-26 06:37:10 PM  
This is a new spin on a old (and proven) design. Cray used fully immersive cooling in the T90 series, probably their most successful product up until that time. Cray used Flourinert (which we just called "nert"), which is insanely expensive. The T90 "chassis" was a huge bathtub full of Flourinert with all the boards completely immersed in the fluid.

If it was good enough for Cray, and these can make it work with mineral oil, more power to them.

Since a Cray CPU board was $750K (and a memory module was $1M), and Cray trusted immersive cooling with those...
 
2012-05-26 06:48:41 PM  
SSD drives or just boot from SAN and keep the storage arrays out of the liquid - I could see this working...
 
2012-05-26 07:58:01 PM  
When it comes to operating expenses, they calculate that a 20KW (42U) installation will save more than $100,000 in energy and infrastructure costs over a 10-year period.

So the savings is 10k per year per full rack? What is working on a grease covered server like?
 
2012-05-26 08:07:55 PM  
I was hoping to see a rack-mounted tasty server like this in the article.
xa3.xanga.com
 
2012-05-26 09:15:02 PM  

aerojockey: That's what I'd think. I'm thinking the server stacks of the future will be glorified GPUs with a relatively small bit of NVRAM attached, a network port, and no other peripherals. Those kinds of racks would be ideal for this.


I don't think that would work for a corporate Client/server set up like you have with a whole bunch of Sunrays. You still need a bunch of computing power AND high throughput. That's probably why Oracle's T4 demand is outpacing supply.
 
2012-05-27 12:19:01 AM  

SuperT: whatever happened to that 3m fluid that you could immerse electronics in and pull them out and they stayed dry?


Fluorinert?

I seem to remember reading about some overclocking project involving this stuff being circulated around the CPU after running through a liquid nitrogen cooling system. For some reason the name stuck.
 
2012-05-27 01:12:32 AM  
I guess they haven't heard of fresh air cooling...
 
2012-05-27 02:35:59 AM  

Uchiha_Cycliste: aerojockey: That's what I'd think. I'm thinking the server stacks of the future will be glorified GPUs with a relatively small bit of NVRAM attached, a network port, and no other peripherals. Those kinds of racks would be ideal for this.

I don't think that would work for a corporate Client/server set up like you have with a whole bunch of Sunrays. You still need a bunch of computing power AND high throughput. That's probably why Oracle's T4 demand is outpacing supply.


Ok. I was actually thinking more technical computing than database/cloud stuff. Massively-parallel FEA calculations don't need much thoroughput.
 
2012-05-27 04:19:14 AM  

IrateShadow: styckx: *facepalm* The old mineral oil is the future gag? This shiat has been around for decades and will never catch on.

I understand it as a gimmick for computer enthusiasts, but it must be a nightmare in an enterprise environment. I can't imagine the mess whenever you have to replace dead hardware or perform upgrades.


Just think of an auto mechanic.
 
2012-05-27 11:02:37 AM  
See, Drew. I told you not to try using beer to cool the server. :-)
 
2012-05-27 04:41:14 PM  

delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.


In all of my time in IT I have hot swapped exactly zero times when considerations like "and when can I do this and not bring users to a crashing halt I the tech nabs the wrong drive?" added up to far more time.
 
2012-05-27 11:16:06 PM  

Evil Twin Skippy: delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.

In all of my time in IT I have hot swapped exactly zero times when considerations like "and when can I do this and not bring users to a crashing halt I the tech nabs the wrong drive?" added up to far more time.


No kidding. It's always a pain in the ass to figure out which drive doesn't have a blinking red or orange light telling you it died.
 
2012-05-28 07:55:59 AM  

Evil Twin Skippy: delathi: That seems like changing a hot-swap hard drive might be a pain in the ass.

In all of my time in IT I have hot swapped exactly zero times when considerations like "and when can I do this and not bring users to a crashing halt I the tech nabs the wrong drive?" added up to far more time.


There are some processes and functions that simply can't wait for "downtime", either for reasons of safety, or legal/financial reasons..

It's not just hard drives either, in the world of mainframes hot swapping CPUs and ram is even doable
 
2012-05-29 01:41:23 AM  

SuperT: whatever happened to that 3m fluid that you could immerse electronics in and pull them out and they stayed dry?


Costs about $1000 a litre if I remember correctly.
 
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