Re: [ccd-newastro] Re: Outdoor dome PC vs laptop durability
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Joe Mize www.cav-sfo.com
Chiefland Astronomy Village, Fla.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Wodaski - Yahoo" <yahoo@...>
Sent: Thursday, February 04, 2010 1:47 PM
Subject: Re: [ccd-newastro] Re: Outdoor dome PC vs laptop durability
It's very true that typical PCs are not meant to handle the conditions we
put them in. Not at all!
You can buy computers that have the ability to tolerate a much wider range
of environmental conditions, but they are very expensive - on the order of
$3,000 to $5,000. They are meant for conditions where very high reliability
is important, where simply replacing a cheap computer is not a good option.
For example, perhaps a computer that is outside at an oil refinery.
But we can simply buy another $400 computer to replace one that goes bad...
On Feb 4, 2010, at 10:14 AM, JLUTKIN wrote:
> I copy some specs from a well know PC provider which I think covers the
> question. Most consumer devices are designed to run in our home or office.
> 10º to 35ºC (50º to 95ºF)
> NOTE: At 35°C (95°F), the maximum operating altitude is 914 m (3000 ft).
> –40º to 65ºC (–40º to 149ºF)
> Relative humidity
> 20% to 80% (noncondensing)
> What to do about it is the problem. In the UK I feel that high humidity
> damp is the enemy in the South it does not usually get cold enough to
> the hard discs to a stand still. I have has some success with modest
> horticultural heater pads which are set to keep a 45degF level.
> I also find that the air con is a bit ineffective with the roof open, but
> that might be an English characteristic!
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- I have a dome and control room in upstate NY. I keep the control room
unheated unless I am there (operate remotely usually). I built a box
for computer and UPS (can't freeze its battery at all). The UPS has an
temp monitor that emails me if temp gets below 40 degrees in box. Also,
have light bulbs inside box with a plug based thermostat (Home Depot or
Lowes, I forget which) so if temp falls below 35 they go on and provide
emergency heat. But usually during cold months I leave computer
on...which keeps the box in the high 40s or 50s degrees. I also keep
powered hubs and switches in the box as well, since I have had problems
if temp in room/dome is below 30 degrees and they are exposed.
Summer, I leave computer off and restart remotely. Remote restart
options are very useful to spec in to a new computer purchase.
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From: Rick [mailto:rickwiggins@...]
Sent: Monday, February 08, 2010 6:09 PM
Subject: [ccd-newastro] Re: Outdoor dome PC vs laptop durability
I leave my observatory desktops runnning anytime the temperature is
below 90 degrees F. I typically shut them down if the dome temp goes
higher than 90. That basically means that in the summer months, I shut
them down about 8AM and restart around 7PM. They will last longer if you
just leave them on unless it gets too hot.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org
<mailto:ccd-newastro%40yahoogroups.com> , Wodaski - Yahoo <yahoo@...>
>the temperature difference might even make reading the hard drive at
> We leave ours on as well. It gets cold enough up in the mountains that
boot problematic - stuff shrinks in the cold. <g>
>shut down between sessions?
> I just would not want to try to boot a computer at -5F.
> not to mention:heat keeps things dry.
> Ron W
> On Feb 3, 2010, at 4:31 PM, csand_83709 wrote:
> > A slight subject change.
> > Do folks leave their desktops/laptops running all the time or do you
> >that's just my guess.
> > I leave mine on...feeling it moderates the cold/humidity cycles. But
> ><mailto:ccd-newastro%40yahoogroups.com> , Wodaski - Yahoo <yahoo@>
> > Thanks, Cal
> > --- In email@example.com
> >>year. Seems to be the way it is. However, I think with aggressive
> >> We have nine or ten computers in our observatories. We lose 1-2 a
maintenance you can prevent some things, like dust ruining fan bearings.
But the hot/cold cycles do take their toll on the electronics.
> >>[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
> >> Ron W
> > ------------------------------------