Choosing how you want to secure and mount your telecom and computer equipment can be quite a challenge if you are not familiar with the terminology used within the industry.
There are three basic types of rack systems used today. The Open Rack System, the Floor Enclosure and the Wall Mount Enclosure. Each has it’s benefits and limitations.
The open rack system is just what it says. There are completely open and generally consist of either two or four posts mounted to a base. The base mounts to the floor for stability or you can also choose from models that will mount to a wall. The advantage to this type of server rack is that it is completely open and makes access to wiring and equipment very easy. It also allows for a variety of shelving types including double sided shelves for maximum use of space. This type of system is generally used in rooms that are secured so that only authorized persons can access the equipment.
Floor enclosures are similar as to the fact that they are floor mounted, but that’s where the similarities end. Floor Mount Enclosures have ventilation fans built in to the cabinet, have lockable access doors and panels, punch outs for wiring, and the capability of using different types of shelving and mouse trays for equipment. Now access to equipment is not nearly as convenient as an open rack system, but if you don’t have available a secure room for an open rack system, Floor Enclosures are a great option.
If security is still an issue but you don’t need a large enclosure for your equipment then a Wall Mount Enclosure would make a great choice. Many models offer not only a lockable front access door, but also lockable removable side panels. Some models even offer a hinged back panel that allows you to swing the entire cabinet away from the wall for easy access to wires and equipment. Wall Mount Cabinets are great for locations that need to secure smaller amounts of equipment while offering you an easy way to secure access to the equipment.
All Rack Mount styles are in the industry standard 19 inch format for inside width and all shelves and accessories are measured in units or what is generally referred to as “U’s”(1U = 1.75 inches). Cabinets or Open Rack Systems will be displayed as the number of units or “U’s” in reference to their capacity. Each shelf or accessory added to these Rack Systems has a “U” value as well which refers to the amount of space they use. This standard allows end users to determine what size cabinet they will require with their equipment and necessary shelving to house that equipment.