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Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move

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Paul Brear_1

Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move

Hi Guys,

i would like some input regarding what you have done or seen regarding labelling servers and more importantly ports (fc , GbE cards etc) on the back of servers prior to a move.
we are moving our data centre and are toying with a few different ideas. The labels on the servers will preferably match the labels on the cables. Prob is theres not a lot of room for labels on servers (mix of rp3410,8400,7420 etc). at the moments its looking like digrams in visio and label the cable?
any thoughts appreciated.

Honored Contributor

Re: Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move

In your case I would document in visio and on the diagram I would go and stick the sam label as on the cables with just a number for the slot so that means very small labels, on the cables you can add a more informative label elsewhere just so you find the right cable for the right boxe with the correct label/number ...

I did some moveing during a week-end a month ago and had difficulties in rebooting and fing disks on san etc...
So I would add document all your boxes by printing for each of them a ioscan, the lan config and to which interface it is connected behind the box and be sure there is nothing else (on the new site, we forgot to configure the VLANS...).
The disks controllers if on san get vg_maps ready in case of need ( I was plugged in the new site on a new brocade switch...).

Good luck
A. Clay Stephenson
Acclaimed Contributor

Re: Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move

Your question is a little disturbing because you should already have visio (or equivalent) diagrams in place indicating SCSI cabling, network cabling, serial/modem cabling, power cabling, etc. This is really part of good Data Center Management.

In addition, every disk drive in my DataCenter (except for those PC things which are not my responsibility) has a label on it indicating the device, slot, SCSI address, and serial number.

If it ain't broke, I can fix that.
Robert Bennett_3
Respected Contributor

Re: Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move

I just recently moved a data center and here are some simple things that were done that saved us a lot of grief.

Get yourself some colored electrical tape. They usually come in a pack of five colors.

It's as easy as putting the same color tape on the ports that are connected, be they scsi,fiber,lan...It becomes an easy exercise of connecting red to red, blue to blue.....

I have to run - but this doesn't negate visios, a good copy of an ioscan and so on. As a note of precaution - the biggest gotcha we had was setting up the networking. Make sure that the ports that you are plugging into in the new data center are set-up exactly as they are in the old one. Good luck.
"All there is to thinking is seeing something noticeable which makes you see something you weren't noticing which makes you see something that isn't even visible." - Norman Maclean
Victor Fridyev
Honored Contributor

Re: Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move


Before we moved our data centre, we've marked all network cables and created a DB for all LANs. As a last stage, all switch ports were configured according to the existing status and new patch panels have been documented. After all this, when the computers were on their places, we had to connect marked cables according to the document to new patch panels. If your lans configured with different speeds, look at the attached script, it will give you list of configured lans with their speeds.
Re SCSI, so we almost did not have troubles with them, because we moved computers and their disk storages rack mounted, but in any case storages and SCSI cables were marked as well. Visio and all such things should help.

Good luck
Entities are not to be multiplied beyond necessity - RTFM
Paul Brear_1

Re: Best Practice for Labelling servers prior to move

Thanks guys, I am only contracting here and was as socked as others to see no clear documents regarding the server setups.
i will use a mixture of visio diagrams and labels and hope that HP get it right when they move the servers...
Cheers again