Caleb Tennis The EPO button: a vulnerable spot in the data center

November 15, 2010 by · 2 Comments 

When we started the design of Data Cave, one major concern was the EPO, or Emergency Power Off, button locations throughout the facility.  In traditional open floor plan colo models, all of the critical power and cooling equipment sits intermixed throughout the data center floor.  The electric code requires emergency power off buttons to be located in certain places so as to kill off this equipment in case of fire or other electrical issue.

The problem with this is, while it’s great for safety, it’s terrible for uptime and security.  Anybody has easy access to completely shutdown the whole data center with the whim of a button push.  While most of the time it’s not malicious intent, there are plenty of accidents each year involving data center shutdowns due to the EPO buttons.

Our design mitigates this, by separating equipment into different zones and having smaller areas, the EPO buttons in Data Cave are not customer facing, and as such, safe from accidental press.

However, it looks like changes to the upcoming electrical code may make provisions for not having to place the EPO buttons in as problematic locations for upcoming builds.  This is great news for the industry.

We’re always available to discuss our data center design philosophies and why Data Cave’s robust design offers peace of mind, with 99.995% uptime and no single points of failure.

Comments

2 Responses to “The EPO button: a vulnerable spot in the data center”
  1. Love your site man keep up the good work

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