With a limited budget, I constructed a physical cabinet structure for housing rack-mount hardware. The cabinet has supported up to 6 servers at a time, and has operated with minimal downtime for many years (like: 4 or 5). It’s not obvious from the photos but the front of the cabinet is fully enclosed by a plexiglass pane. The pictures in this article don’t fully do the project justice. I eventually fitted a pretty serious air intake onto the top of the cabinet and increased the airflow capacity between the shelves.

During this project, I also worked intensively on Xenadu, which is a server management tool. Once I got Xenadu to a satisfying state, I moved all my servers “into the cloud” (whatever that means). I was moving into a smaller apartment too, so this was really the only way it was going to work out.

  • based dimensions on industry standards
  • created original schematic based on experience with woodworking
  • personally constructed cabinet using simple woodworking tools
  • researched and purchased all materials
  • debugged airflow problems, wire routing issues, and labeling
  • successfully protects sensitive equipment from dust and high temperatures

This article was originally written June 1, 2013.