3 July 2006

Computers cry out for air conditioning

~ high temperatures frazzle files and strike servers, warns Ontrack; ten tips to avoid data loss ~

Untitled Document
3 July 2006

Computers cry out for air conditioning

~ high temperatures frazzle files and strike servers, warns Ontrack; ten tips to avoid data loss ~

Untitled Document

With reports of record temperatures in June, it’s not just office workers that are getting hot under the collar, but computers too.

Ontrack Data Recovery experienced a significant rise in data loss inquiries last month, coinciding with high temperatures and thunderstorms in the UK. The biggest risk to PCs and laptops is from power surges and blackouts if they become overheated by direct and indirect lightning strikes or the hot climate.

The data recovery specialist is warning that the predicted high temperatures this summer will affect all sizes of companies. From computers in small or home offices ( SOHO) to super servers in large corporations, measures must be taken to ensure they are kept cool.

To help computer users protect themselves against weather-related disasters, Ontrack has several tips that can help protect data:

  1. Keep computers in a cool, dry area to prevent overheating
  2. Avoid having too many computers running off one power supply, via an extension cable. If the power socket is affected by a power surge or lightning strike, all computers could experience damage
  3. Install a surge protector between the power socket and the computer’s power cable (spend the small amount more to get an actual surge protector, not just a power strip). Some brands offer guaranteed lightning protection, even on lower-priced models
  4. Small businesses with networks should get surge protectors that negate power spikes normally transmitted through network cables
  5. Check protection devices regularly. At least once a year, users should inspect power protection devices to make sure they are functioning properly. Most leading models will have a signalling light to confirm that they are operating
  6. Use dedicated circuits, if possible. Ensure IT equipment has its own power circuit, so it isn’t sharing the power with air conditioners, fans, and/or other ancillary devices. This greatly improves the power quality and insulates the computer equipment from power sags when other non-IT devices are turned on
  7. Turn off and disconnect the power cord during an electrical storm. This is a simple precaution that protects the system from possible problems during a thunderstorm
  8. Turn off power during a blackout. When power is restored after a blackout, the signal can initially be inconsistent, which can cause damage
  9. High voltages can enter the computer through a phone line connected to the modem. To protect your computer during electrical storms, unplug the telephone line from the modem jack or use a telephone line surge suppressor
  10. Businesses with network servers should invest in some form of uninterruptible power supply (UPS), which cleans the power supply and features backup batteries to keep servers running during power outages

“Severe weather can cause significant computer damage,” said Phil Bridge, business development manager, Ontrack Data Recovery. “We can’t stop the power of nature, but we can certainly take steps to safeguard our IT systems against imminent summer storms and high temperatures. Companies should be aware of weather-related issues like overheating, if they are to avoid a meltdown catastrophe.”

For more information about Ontrack Data Recovery, please visit www.ontrack.co.uk

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About Ontrack Data Recovery

Ontrack Data Recovery (www.ontrack.co.uk) is the largest, most experienced and technologically advanced provider of data recovery products and services worldwide. Ontrack is able to recover lost or corrupted data from virtually all operating systems and types of storage devices through its do-it-yourself, remote and in-lab capabilities, using its hundreds of proprietary tools and techniques. Ontrack Data Recovery is a brand name of Kroll Ontrack Inc., a technology services subsidiary of Kroll Inc., the global risk consulting company.

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