UPS changes
#29 Henry, Friday, 01 January 2010 2:35 PM (Category: Hardware)
(Tags: ups)

I have a number of UPSs in the house. In the server rack, I have an APC 1400VA 2u rackmount UPS unit. It's been great having this protecting the servers for the last few years, but batteries don't last forever. Last month, the load lights on the unit started flashing wildly, and it made me realise that a battery upgrade was required. But replacement batteries are about $370 for this model.

I didn't feel a sense of urgency about it, I did some research, I looked for cheap alternatives. The day before New Years Eve changed that. The light indicating that the batteries were bad and needed replacing finally lit up. And the unit started going into 5 minute beep frenzies every few hours. The first time it happened in the middle of the night and scared me considerably. Then it got boring. I needed a replacement ASAP.

While buying alcohol and food for the New Years Eve frenzy, I stopped at Office Max and Best Buy and checked out home-grade UPS units. I bought one and took it home - APC Back-UPS XS 1500. It's not a rackmount unit, but it's 1500VA, has enough slots for plugs in the back, and even has a nice display. I charged it up overnight, and on New Years Day when the alcohol level had subsided enough, I switched the servers to the new UPS. Nice.

The display on front is very nice. I can see that the unit is not overloaded, and that it will keep my servers running for 22 minutes before they turn off. I like that. Once I get the mail/web server upgraded, that will reduce the number of servers on it, and they will last even longer. I like this unit so much, I might get another one. I'll see if I can trade in the rackmount UPS and get another one for my desktop.

Once again, my computer room is silent, with no screaming alarms.

And if the alarms ever do go off, there is a button on this unit to mute them. Bliss.

APC UPS display showing 22 minutes