Prepping the Law Center

Today our team descended on the Angelos Law Center to prepare for several installations next week. We installed 16 switches today in the law center. Fortunately we had a trendy Honda Element at our disposal to move them from our super secret location to the law center.

unloading boxesThis type of work is called pre-staging. Obviously that term is not unique to networking. In our world, it means mounting the new switch while keeping the active switch live. Pre-staging cannot happen in every network closet because there’s no room for another switch. The benefit of pre-staging is minimizing outage time to swap the switches. It’s a matter of moving cables from one switch to the same spot in the new switch. Here’s one of the law center closets after it was pre-staged. Under each switch with yellow cables coming out, you can see there’s an empty switch ready for action on Monday.

network closet pre staged
If we cannot pre-stage, the outage is longer. We have to disconnect the active switch and dismount it from the rack before we can put the new switch in place. Pre-staging versus not is kind of like being able to make a breakfast casserole the night before to pop in the oven the next morning before your guests arrive versus making pancakes, sausage, and eggs for a party of 8 while everyone is waiting for their food.

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