The machine room is laid out in terms of rack positions. Faculty and other machine room users can rent rack positions as specified in the department's recharge policy. Each rack position comes with an allocation of resources. This includes the physical space, 7.5KVA of 208 volt power, 1 copper gigabit network connection and suitable cooling to match the power provided. The room and the resources are managed by the Chief Technology Officer.
Rack positions are available to any faculty member of the department. Unused space may also be made available to outside groups to recoup expenses and to be good neighbors in the campus community. Priority will be given to CSE faculty. There are 68 rack positions available for research use. Less than half of those positions will be occupied at the time the room is opened. At some point in time, the room will get full. At that point, the department chair and the computing committee will prioritize needs and decide how the racks will be reorganized. For example, if there is a rack that contains mostly dead or obsolete computers that are no longer being used for research, the rack position for that rack has a high probability of being reassigned.
Racks may need to be relocated within the room for a variety of reasons. Such relocations will be done at the discretion of the Chief Technology Officer. Suitable notice will be provided so that the disruption to research, due to the necessary downtime, will be minimized.
All racks moving into the room must fit through the doors in their upright position. This means that all racks should be no taller than 83”. Legacy racks that were in the department's machine room prior to the move to this building are excluded from this rule.
Rack positions are designed for 24” wide racks. If necessary, you may use racks up to 27” in width. However, you will be charged for additional rack space as space becomes tight in the room or you may be required to switch to 24” racks.
All resources (rack position, power outlets, network connections, etc.) will be allocated by the Chief Technology Officer. It is not appropriate to use resources not allocated to your rack. All racks must be labeled to indicate which group is responsible for the rack. All computers, within the racks, must be labeled with their host name. The department's computing support staff can assist with the labeling. A log book will be maintained indicating which racks are in the room, the emergency contacts for each rack, emergency instructions for each rack and resources allocated to each rack.
The machine room is not a storage room. Anything left outside a designated rack position will be disposed of promptly. For example, no monitors sitting on boxes in the aisles are allowed. You must keep your monitors in your racks (slide out LCD panels are excellent choices) or you may use the provided monitor “crash carts” on a temporary basis. You must keep all items connected to your racks within the three dimensional bounds of your rack. If you feel that you need to place something somewhere outside of your rack, discuss the issue with the Chief Technology Officer prior to installing the item in question. He will discuss alternative options with you and initiate the exception process if an exception to the machine room policy is necessary for your item.