An Inside Look At TTZ

This is the home of The TechZone and TTZ Media Network – the colo data center at NetNation Communication, located on the second floor of the Bentall 5, in downtown Vancouver.

Colo room

Below is the cage that houses the servers that powers TTZ and three other technology based sites. We’ll start at the top and move down.

TTZ Servers

There are three Dell 1850 servers in total. Each server runs dual Xeon 2.8GHz CPUs with 4 Gigs of DDR2 RAM, and two 10,000 RPM Ultra 320 SCSI drives in RAID 1. The servers also feature dual power supply in case one fails. Cost? $4,000 each.

The very top server is the ad server. It serves ads to the TTZ Media Network sites and nothing else. Below that is the Apache server that powers the front end of The TechZone.

Below the Apache server is a custom made 2U server that powers Auphan Online and Auphan Software. I do not know the specs of this server. Auphan is the company that designed the software that powers the TTZ Media advertising engine.

Moving down we see what looks to be a very powerful Dell 2650 2U server. However, that’s not the case. It’s really a custom 1U Intel server with dual Xeon 2.8 and 2Gigs of DDR RAM, two 7200RPM SATA drives in RAID 1. This server is used to power Futurelooks.com, a TTZ Media Network affiliate. We found the Dell 2650 faceplate laying around at the server room and decided to put it on so Futurelooks can feel cool. I call it the Rice Server.

Below the Rice Server is TTZ database server. This Dell 1850 has the same specs as the other two 1850 except this unit use faster 15,000 RPM SCSI drives, also in RAID 1. Below the DB servers is a Silverstone case housing the only Windows box. We use this box as a game server.

Below the game server is a 2U server that powers HardCoreWare.net, another TTZ Media Network affiliate. His server is a P4 with 2 Gigs of RAM and 74Gig 10K SATA Raptor. He also has a 250 Gig 7200RPM drive for back up. Since that photo was taken, HardCoreWare has upgraded their server to a 1U Dell 850.

Hidden from the picture is a very expensive Cisco Enterprise level 24 port switch that connects all the servers to the internet. As you can see, the cage is pretty full. Any future expansion will require that I order up another cage. However, most likely we will dump the game server before doing that.


9 thoughts on “An Inside Look At TTZ”

  1. Nathaniel says:

    I have heard from NetNation, where I as well have a cage, that they are getting out of the colocation business.

    I recommend checking out Peer1. They appear to be the #1 company for bandwidth, and colocation.

  2. John says:

    Wow John, that’s a pretty clean colo. I wish my colo area was that clean. Every time I visit my rack, someone has stuffed another server and created a even greater cable mess. Are you buying bandwidth by the GB or do you have an unlimited 10 or 100 connection?

  3. John Chow says:

    Nathaniel – My rep never talked once about NetNation getting out of the colo business. I will ask him when I meet him at the Tech Vibes Massive event next Tuesday. Yes I have heard of Peer 1 and have friends who have space there. They tell me it’s great, but expensive.

    John – My bandwidth is sponsored, I only pay for the cage rental.

  4. Carl says:

    I have since changed the game server box to a 1U custom box. I had to chop off the audio output ports with a knife to get the desktop motherboard to fit into the 1U case!

    The 2U server is still there, powering my other sites like WidescreenGamer.com and BuildSilentPC.com. The Dell 850 is dedicated to powering my main site, hardCOREware.net.

    Both servers are using Pentium Extreme Editions. The 2U server has a 3.46 GHz with 2MB L3 cache, and the Dell 1U has a 3.73 GHz with 2MB L2 cache.

  5. Kiltak says:

    Is all that material property of TTZ or is it rented? How are you satisfied overall of your Dell Servers?

    I’ve heard alot of people grumbling about Dell Hardware and service in the past few years, but personally, I’ve never really had any problems with them, and when I did, the service was lightning fast and of top notch quality.

    I’m sure that yearly Cisco Maintenance subscribtion must be almost as expensive as one of your server by itself.. 😉

  6. Jane says:

    Very clean looking…I see that organization or yours applies to TTZ as well.

  7. Alex Becker says:

    I never seen a colo before but it looks very cool. Im guessing this blog is on one of those servers as well?

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