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Server won't start after a shower...

Dave Biby
Occasional Visitor

Server won't start after a shower...

I had a DL-380 server get a little wet during a roof leak last week. When I discovered it, it wasn't running.

I set the server upright on each end to attempt to get free moisture to run out... then placed the uncovered server in a large bag with several pounds of rice to try to pull the moisture out. I followed the same idea with the hard drives and the power supplies.

With my fingers crossed, I reassembled the server and gave it a try... No go... LEDs on the motherboard and an amber power light...

Pluggin in one power supply gives a high speed p/s fan... and nothing else... the other runs its fan slower... Neither seem to have connection to the power switch...

I even tried a p/s from our server which didn't seem to get more than superficially wet, but no go...

Any ideas on how to narrow down the exact problem, or should I just give up and call the insurance.

Hiren N Dave
Valued Contributor

Re: Server won't start after a shower...

Looks like your server is affected by water...

call HP support for hardware resolution....
I am an HP Employee

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Michael A. McKenney
Respected Contributor

Re: Server won't start after a shower...

You will have to disaseemble the server completely. Pull everything out of it. Blow dry the components and server board. check each board for damage. You might need to send the drives to On-Track for data recovery. I would contact your insurance company about placing a claim and get new server ordred. How much water was in the server. Were the drives wet? What RAID configuration?
Bernard Luksich
Occasional Advisor

Re: Server won't start after a shower...

Most likely the water from the roof contained contaminants that were conductive.

From your description, the server was powered on but when you found it the power was off. This would be a further indication the water/contaminants were conductive and shorted some circuits leading to either failing power or causing a shutdown.

At this point, there is probably some residue on the PCB or under the CPU or other chips on the board. You will need to clean the PCB board to remove the residues especially under components. In addition, any component on the system board that is open (like the DIP switches) need to be cleaned.

Be sure to remove the CMOS battery during the cleaning process.

If you have insurance it might be the best way to go since there may be some corrosion you will be unable to remove which will cause a failure later.

Hope that helps a bit.

Dave Biby
Occasional Visitor

Re: Server won't start after a shower...

Looking over the motherboard and calling HP support, they decided it wasn't worth pursuing... If it doesn't start right back up, there are problems... and those problems will become a money pit because as you solve one, other items may have become compromised as well.

(After speaking with them, I did more investigation and noticed little corrosion spots around some chips and wonder if some transistors deteriorated...)

I'm preparing a quote for an identical server and other equipment.

I may get their advice as well for the DL-380-G6 that was under this machine in the rack and never stopped running... (I don't want to turn it off "just in case")...

Thanks for all your advice!
Michael A. McKenney
Respected Contributor

Re: Server won't start after a shower...

I would contact On-Track about data recovery from those drives. On-Track is the best at disk recovery.

Do you have another active directory server? Rebuilding SIDs is not fun. You will also want to include an estimate for data recovery, downtime costs, professional services to get back up and running faster.