As you try to setup and configure your office network, it is a good idea to look into the different server rack and cabinet options available to you. These are simply different ways to store the hardware associated with the network, so looking over what an open rack and a cabinet enclosure is able to do for you is very important. Each has its own set of pros and cons, you just need to determine what set of pros and cons is more important to your own business.
An open rack looks exactly as it sounds. The rack is either made up of two connecting bars or four connecting bars. Although the number of bars can vary, the general method for holding up the server racks is going to be the same. It allows for the most amount of exposure to the hardware, which in itself has its own pros and cons.
On the pro side, it is easy to access all of the cables and connections on both side of the networking hardware, yet on the con side of the spectrum, if it is in a heavy traffic area it is easier to accidentally disconnect and bump some of the cables.
The open rack is less expensive than a closed cabinet, and it is also easier to cool. The temperature of the hardware is very important and you need to have the networking equipment kept at a cool temperature, in order to avoid any sort of overheating. If you have a smaller network, one of the best rack solutions is to go with an open rack and have it located in a temperature controlled room.
With the cabinet enclosure, the rear of the cabinet is still open, but the walls are made up of a solid material and the door to the cabinets is usually a metal grating. All of this is going to provide you with exceptional protection.
The protection a full 42u server rack cabinet is able to provide you is unlike anything else an open rack is able to give you. Beyond this, the 42u server rack cabinet is also a nice option if you run a larger network and need more than just one cabinet. You do need to make sure you are in a properly cooled room though, as the cabinets do reduce the air flow circulating around the hardware, which means the core temperature of the equipment can increase and remain high.
Instead, you need to focus in on how you are cooling the room. Many server and networking rooms have specially designed air circulation systems so the air pushes directly through the back end of the rack cabinet in order to cool off the hardware. Beyond it all, the rack cabinet enclosure is going to be more expensive than the other options out there, so this is just something you need to keep in mind when you decide which is going to be the best for you.
Both open racks and cabinet enclosures are excellent options for your networking needs, you just need to decide which one works better for you. Understand your specific needs prior to making your purchase.