What Is That Odd Buzzing Noise Coming From The Server Room?

Hint: It's not an animal....

This week we faced an odd issue with a server that was reaching out in a less than common manner. Even with sophisticated monitoring every five minutes, Backup reports and Security reports; sometimes the old ways are the fall back. The audible alarm.

In this case, a client made a call about a buzzing alarm and was unclear of its origin or why it was occurring. The server closet had many devices that could have been the source: Phone systems, battery systems, monitors, alarm systems. Our engineer came out to inspect (with open ears) to find the source and identify the issue. A simple fan failure (either partial or full) had created high temperatures that were visible to the hardware specific monitoring software which let us know what was happening beyond the “beep”. This server was facing high temperatures in the hard drive region of the computer and was not able to communicate these specific settings to the operating system (and consequently, the software early warning systems that were in place). Problems like this can be the hardest to find as temperatures change. Hardware can be susceptible at different times of day and under different loads, as well as the slowing down and speeding up of fans as they fail. In the end, this alert was not ignored by the customer or by us and before permanent damage was done, the part was replaced.

What do we suggest to do in a case like this?

Reach out to a remote enabled group like ours quickly. The physical alarm issues are typically the most pressing like low temperature or low voltage. Both conditions can result in rapid permanent damage to computer equipment.