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darthjonathan12

Power Efficiency help

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Hello all, 

 

I just purchased a small UPS (https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B01FWAZEIU/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00__o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

and it is working great, I have been tired of these constant power outages with the weird weather we have had since November. 

I have my router and modem with Unraid plugged into the UPS with no monitor or any other device connected. 

 

However according to Unraid, depending on what the server is doing I will range from 11 to 19 minutes of run time before the battery is depleted, I understand that upgrading would give me more time but I was hoping someone has some tips on making my server more power efficient.  It is mainly used as a Plex docker with Sonar, Radar, and SABnzd, as well as a steam storage and file storage for all my stuff. I have my VMs off by default and only turn them on when testing software or preforming certain tasks. 

 

This is my hardware. 

https://pcpartpicker.com/list/tQd4V6

 

 

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What's the typical reported UPS load in watts?

 

That UPS is around 20 minutes at 100W of load. Your server and router and modem could easily draw well over that when the server is working with all disks spun up. 

 

There is no simple way to make existing hardware more efficient to much extent. About all you can do is make sure the CPU is speed stepping and the fans are speed controlled based on the temperature of the devices they are cooling.

 

 

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11-19 minutes should be more than enough time to safely un-mount and shutdown the server. If you need more up-time during an outage, buy a generator (of the inverter variety preferably), because in reality that 11 to 19 minutes is more like 5 to 10 under actual load.

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Since I set it up I have seen the typical load range from 98 to 115 watts.   I've gone ahead and ordered a larger UPS because I've decided to use this smaller one for something else.  The two main reasons for my question is first off that of the many power outages I have had over the past two years, only one or two lasted for longer than 30 minutes so I wanted to find a UPS that can provide that level of power to last throughout the short outages and safely shutdown for the longer ones, and secondly that after installing the UPS I am becoming more conscious about how much power I am using (and paying for) even when the server is doing nothing.  

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OK, I can give you a comparison -

 

--UnRaid server has an i7-8700 (stock cooler/fan) with 32G of DDR4 on a GigaByte Z370XP, 15 spinning hard drives (8TBx10, 6TBx3, 5TBx1, 4TBx1), 2 SSDs, 2 HBAs, 1 expander, a 10G NIC (which probably draws 10W by itself doing nothing...), 6 80mm Noctua fans and an 850W 80+ Gold PSU

 

--Firewall - SuperServer 5018A-MLTN4 ATOM C2550, 16G DDR3, SSD, 200W PSU (running pfSense)

--24 port managed switch with 4 10G SFP+

--8 port POE switch powering 2 wireless APs and a security camera

--KVM Console with a 17" LCD

--VOIP bridge

--Lutron Caseta bridge

--Energy Detective station

--Wireless phone base station

-- 4 ventilation fans for the rack

 

There's probably a few other miscellaneous things in there I'm forgetting, but all that is running right now and it's currently showing a load of 189 watts with 11 drives spun up and idle (during parity check, it'll climb up to around 220 watts). Right now my 1500VA/1350W UPS (CyberPower PR1500LCDRT2U) says it'll keep the power on for 68 minutes

 

 

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23 hours ago, darthjonathan12 said:

The two main reasons for my question is first off that of the many power outages I have had over the past two years, only one or two lasted for longer than 30 minutes so I wanted to find a UPS that can provide that level of power to last throughout the short outages and safely shutdown for the longer ones,

Normal consumer UPS use sealed lead acid batteries, which get unhappy when you discharge them below about 50%. So, if you feel you need to keep running for 30 minutes before triggering a shutdown, you need to get one that is happy running your load for an hour or more so you don't discharge it too deeply and hurt the battery permanently.

 

This is going to be a rather expensive UPS, and not particularly power efficient in and of itself.

 

I strongly recommend reconsidering your end goal, and instead focus on how long it takes to cleanly shut down a fully active system, and work backwards from that figure. Say it takes 10 minutes to shutdown with all your VM's up and doing things. I know you said you don't leave them running, but power outages don't respond to averages, they tend to hit when it's least convenient. If you start the shutdown process at 5 minutes into the outage, you need 15 minutes of full power from the UPS, so it needs to be sized at a minimum of 30 minutes runtime to avoid deeply discharging the batteries.

 

Also remember, that after a discharge event, it takes MUCH longer to recharge the batteries, depending on the model possibly 10 times or more. So if you discharge to 50% in 15 minutes, it's not going to be ready for another event for 3 hours. Around here, the power company has a bad habit of restoring power ASAP, then taking it back down to complete the repair rather soon after the event. It stays up just long enough to convince you it's back for the long term, and then it goes right back down.

 

If you run the UPS down to 5%, you can't safely turn the server back on for HOURS after the power has returned.

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