Rack Mounting NVRs Tutorial

By Ethan Ace, Published Mar 14, 2018, 11:56am EDT

Rack mounting recorders is common in professional systems, but manufacturers are making it difficult, with simple design failures causing multiple issues.

Rack Basics 

Most commonly, the term "rack" is used to refer to equipment with vertical mounting rails 19" apart and a standardized mounting hole pattern. This may be one of a variety of styles (open frame, closed, etc., discussed below), all of which are simply called racks in common usage.

Rack height and depth varies depending on how much and which equipment is to be mounted in it, with some deep enough only for patch panels and switches (~12-18") or others sized to accept even the largest servers (~30"+). 

Rack Units (RU)

Rack rails include a standardized hole pattern which is broken down into "rack units", a 1.75" division consisting of three mounting holes. These units are often marked on rack rails to make front/back mounting easier.

Rack unit is most often abbreviated to RU or simply U, which can be found on some equipment's spec sheets under dimensions, such as this NVR:

Open Frame Vs. Cabinet

Racks may be either open frame (2 or 4 post) or enclosed. Open frame racks are typically used in rooms which are secured and climate controlled, while cabinets are used in open office areas where the enclosure itself is secured and ventilated.

Both styles may be floor mount or wall mount, depending on space requirements, number of rack spaces needed, wall construction, etc. 

In this report, we look at rack mounting recorders, covering these topics:

  • Why rack mount?
  • Why not mount on desk, table or floor?
  • Recorders without mounts included
  • Recorders blocking adjacent spaces
  • Front only mounts cause device sag
  • Rack rails do not fit
  • Other rack components to consider

 

Why **** *****?

**** ******** ********* ** done *** ******* *******:

  • ************ ***********:******** ********* ** * central **** ****** ***** and ******* *********** ** be ************, ******* ** spread ** ********* *********, desktops, *******, ***.
  • ******** ********:**** ******** ********* ******** security ** *********, ** it *** ** ****** in * ******* *******, a **** ** * locked ****, ** ****** clearly ********** ** ********* only ********** ********* ****** access.
  • **********:******* **** *********** *********** and ***** *** ****** to ** ******* ******, racks ********* ******* ********** compared ** ******* ********* on ******* ** ********.

Why *** ***** ** ****, *****, ** *****?

*******, **** *********, ********** smaller ******, **** **** rubber ****, ******** **** manufacturers ****** **** ***** will ****** ***** ****/**** on ***** ** ******* or **** *** *****.

*******, ***** ************* *** simply *** ***********, ** cable ********** *** ******** are **** **** ********* to ****** **** ******* are ****** ****** ** these *****. **** ** shelf ****** *** ** improved ** ****** ******, ***** wire ********, ************* ***** supplies, ***., *** ***** additions ** ******** *** installation ***** ********* ****** reductions ** **** ****.

Rack ******** *********** **** ** ***** ************

** **** ***** ************, where * ******** ** the **** ********* ** be ********* *** *** connections **** ** ** made, ***** *** *** be *********, *** **** customers ****** ** ****** racks ** **** ** commercial *************. **** ** shelf ******** ********** ** often ********** **************.

Problem *: ** ****** ********

**** *** **** *** even *** ***** **** do *** ******* **** mounts. ** **** *****, they *** ** ******* as ** *** **, but ** **** ***** are ********** ***********. ***** should ******* **** ****** are ********* *** *** many ****** *** **** requires ****** ********.

*** ******** ********* **** a ******** ** *** rack ***** ** *** lack ** ******** ***** on *** ***** ** the ********, ***** ****:

** ***** **** ** be * ******* ** a ****** ** ********* manufacturers. **** ******* ********* and ****** ****** **** with **** ******. ***** recorders ******* ** *** on *****, ******* **********.

Problem *: ********* ******** ***** ******** ******

******, **** ********* ***** include **** ****** ******* more ***** **** ********* due ** **** ** the ****** ** *** case ** ****** ***** which ****** **** *** space *****, ******* *** NVR's **** ***** **** taking **** * ****** space.

*** *******, *** ******** below (******) ** *** tall ** *** **** a ****** ***** *** to ******** **** ** the ****** ** *** unit. 

**** ******* ** ****** space **** ******** ********* are ** ** ******* in * ****** ****, effectively ******* *** ***** available. ************, ** ****** cabinets, **** ***** ***** may ****** *********** ********, as ********** **** ******* blank ** **** ****** above ***/** ***** **** recorder ** ******** *******.

** ***** **** ********** to ** ** ***** on ****** ***** "**" recorder ** *******, ******* Hikvision, ******, *****, ** others. 

Problem *: ***** ****** ***

*** **** ******** ** embedded ********* *** ***** rack ****** **** ***** may ****** ** *** rear ** ***** *******. This ******** ********** *** may ********* **** ********* mounted ***** *** ********, making *********** **** ********* to ****** ** ******* pressure ** *** **** of ***** ********* *****.

**** ***** ** ****** in **** *********, ********* compact *** ********** *********** single **** ***** **** shown *****:

*** **** ** **** of ****** *+ **** space *********. ****** ***** rack ****** *** ****** and **** **********, *** increased ****** ** ***** larger ***** ***** ****** sag, ***** ****:

***** *** *** ******** solutions ** ****:

  • **** ******* *** ******* units:*** ******* *********, ************ rack ******* ****** ******* ****** support *** ********* **** sag.
  • *****/**** ***** *** ****** units:*** ****** ******** ********* and **** *******, ******* offer ***** ***** **** front ** **** ** the ****/*******, ******** ********* to ** ****** ** top *** *********. **** is ***** ***** **** the **** ** ******** shown *****.

** **** ****** ******, we ******* ***** ****** in *********** ***** ************ and ***** ** ******** we ******, **** ****** connections **** **** ** the **** ** *** unit, ****** ********** ******.

Problem *: **** ***** **** *** ***

** **** *****, **** rails ******** **** ******* may *** *** * user's **** *** * number ** *******. 

  • ***** ******** *****: **** ***** *** ******** holes *** ******** *********, while ****** *** ****** holes ***** ****** * captive *** (****** **** nuts). ******** ***** *** typically ******** *** *** or *** *****, *** not **** ** ***** styles.

  • **** *** *******: ******, **** ***** *** be *** ******* ** mount ****** *****, ***** are ********* *" ** more ****** **** *** server ******.
  • **** ***** ** *** Way: *******, *** ************ ** some ***** *** *** allow *** **** ** pass. **** ** ******** in ***** **** "*" shaped ***** ** ******* to "*" ***** (*** our ********** **** ******** **** *** ********).

***** **** ** ****** due ** ****** ************* intending ********* ** ** mounted ** ******** ***** (generally **** **** *** with ****** **** *****), with ** ****** *** attaching ** ******** ***** or ********** ** ********* racks.

*************, *** ******* ******** to *** ***** ****** is ** *** ***** to **** **** ***** as ********* ***** **** embedded *********, ** ***** are *** ***** *******. In **** ***** ***** racks *** ****** *** short, ********/********* *** ** used (*****), *** ***** components *** ****, ****** aesthetics, *** *** * point ** ******* ***** may ****** ***/** **** over ****.

Other **** **************

**** **** ***** **** recorders ** ** **** mounted, ***** ****** ********* consider **** ***** ********* might ** ******** ** the **** ****** ** the **** ** ************ or ** *** ******. Components **** **********, *******,*******,*** *******, ***** ******, ***** managers, *** ****** ****** all ** ********* ***, in ***** ** ******** size **** ****** *** depth, ***********, *** *****/******* backup ************.

*** ***** ** ***** results ** ***-** ********* being ******* *********, ********* additional *****, *******, *** other **************, ** ******** equipment ** ** ******* and *********** ** * larger ****, ****** ****.

Comments (8)

One other thing i find extremely irritating when i have encountered it, is the quality of the rail kits. I have a few sites running senneca servers and found when having to pull the nvr out to de-rack it for service the release tabs for the rails fails to release and in some cases comes apart. I know its a minor thing but it makes you really appreciate good quality hardware when poor quality hardware sucks up time on a menial task.

Agree: 2
Disagree
Informative: 1
Unhelpful
Funny

I agree with you, and I work at Seneca (Arrow Intelligent Systems really).

A few years ago, one of our chassis ODMs was sending  really chintzy rails with their unit.  They were failing just like you described...pull the unit out and the bearings would fall out or the rail came out of the slot.   I brought them in and showed them this and they redesigned the rails.

It would be helpful to know if this was an 'older' chassis or even a different ODM than the one I already chastised.

Post here if you wish to remain UD.   Even better would be to call in to our service department and voice the complaint. 1-800-227-3432  (Option 5)

Agree
Disagree
Informative: 5
Unhelpful
Funny

I dont mean to disparage your company name. I just found it peculiar for such a low quality kit to accompany a higher quality NVR. Im not sure what the server model was. Id have to dig a little to find out. The last one i personally encountered we had purchsed it maybe 7 months ago. It was 64 tb so the rail kit failing to operate correctly was extremely disappointing. That said, i like everything else about senneca.

Agree
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Informative
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Funny

We definitely don't want that to be the situation..ie the LQ rails on HQ NVR. 

In the time frame you mention we have two chassis partners.

Help us to help you and others by letting us know the particulars you encountered.   That way we can prevent future issues.

All the ways to reach out to us in an official fashion are here:

Seneca Support page

 

Agree
Disagree
Informative
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Funny

I totally agree with this. The first Bosch BVMS system with a management server and a NETAPP that in installed I was stunned. The management server which is HP had the usual high quality rail kits but the $20,000 NETAPP had really cheap rail kits that were a pain to install into the rack and the slide mechanism was just metal on metal and a simple thumb screw and nut. Would have expected more from this part of the product. Actually I ended up not using the slides and just secured it to the rack wit the screws and it rested on the other equipment. Other than that all was well though. One would think with how much you typically spend on NVR's they would come with rail kits at no charge and be of good quality.

Agree: 2
Disagree
Informative
Unhelpful: 1
Funny

We actually have a Hik Vision encoders with the typical rack mount sag.. This encoder is single handedly the worst piece of rack mount equipment I have ever worked with.. Between bent rack ears and screws not lining up it was not a fun time mounting this hardware..

Agree
Disagree
Informative: 2
Unhelpful
Funny: 1

The new Hik (I know) 1U NVR is heavy, especially toward the back.  But the puny rack ears have holes that are too big, and it's impossible to tighten the screws enough to keep the unit from sagging.  At least on a 2U there's more leverage.

Agree
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Informative: 3
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Funny

The new Dahua NVRs don't include the rack-mount holes either. An optional PFH101 snap-in rack-mount adapter tray makes it rack-mountable, but the 1U the becomes larger than 1U, which defeats the purpose of organizing multiple NVRs into a rack neatly.

Agree
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Informative: 2
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Funny
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