I'll go you one better... We had a location in Tampa, Florida-- Queen city of the afternoon thunderstorm.

Every day about 4 PM the thunder would boom and the lights would flicker. And the UPS nobly did its job; our System/38 never noticed.

Until the afternoon when the thunder boomed and the lights flickered. And went out. And -stayed- out.

Well, the UPS tried. But couldn't hold the machine more than a few minutes. And the S/38 came crashing to a halt.

After the storm the local computer guy started the S/38 back up. And lo and behold the power failed. Seems the facilities guy was working with the UPS in the back room and switched to utility power, which glitched the power.

Oh, what fun! I worked out of our NJ headquarters, and my boss put me on a plane to fix things.

By the time I got to Tampa the local guy had things sorted out. It seems that the racks and racks of batteries for the UPS were on metal shelving-- the kind with the X brace across the back. With a screw through the center of the X to keep things from moving. And the batteries shoved to the back of the shelves with the screw puncturing one of the batteries. The electrolyte oozed out, down to the level of the screw, which left just enough battery to handle the daily flicker, but not a sustained outage.

I recommended that the local computer guy and the facilities guy needed to keep in touch when putting things back together.

And the S/38? Well, it had about 3 interrupted IPLs and an 'abnormal termination' to sort out. And it did-- it just took a while. No major complications.

Paul E Musselman



Larry "DrFranken" Bolhuis wrote (in part):
2) Consider if you want to run your UPS down to it's last Watt or
not. Think about what happens when the power comes back on, do you want
some battery left so that it's OK to start the system back up fairly
soon or not? Years ago my co-manager (who was in charge of hardware)
would let our S/36 run until the UPS was crying for mercy and then shut
it down. Then upon power restoration she literally hit the Power button
the second the UPS came on line. One day we lost power again within 15
minutes and she didn't even make it into the Computer room before the
UPS checked out. Ugh.


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