What are these Stage 1, Stage 2, and Stage 3 power alerts, anyway?
Lately, we have been experiencing lots of power alerts.
Here are some things you can do when you receive email messages from
Sally Grant or Vege Clarisse informing you of a Stage 2 or 3 power alert:
- Turn off any unnecessary lights or electrical appliances in your
office or at home.
- Turn off any space heaters in your office. If you have
a thermostat, set it to 68 degrees or lower (in winter) or 74 degrees or
higher (in summer).
- Try to avoid working on the computers during peak demand times. In our
latest series of power alerts, peak demand has occurred between 4 and 8pm.
- If you have long programs to run that would have to be started from
scratch if the power failed while they were running, postpone running them
to another day if possible.
- Log out when you leave for the day.
- If you don't want to log out, don't leave files open in applications such
as editors. Leaving files open can result in damage to the files if
a blackout occurs. Don't leave programs such as Netscape, iraf, or IDL
running when you leave.
- Turn off your monitor when you leave. Don't shut down your computer,
unless you normally do so.
All the suggestions under Stage 2 apply to Stage 3 power alerts as well.
- Save your work often! You should be doing this anyway, whether or not
there is a power alert...
- Don't leave files open in applications such as editors for any longer
than necessary. Don't leave programs such as Netscape, iraf, or IDL running
any longer than necessary, even while you are at your desk.
- Use the printers and copiers sparingly. If you have to print a large
collection of files, do them all at once, so the printer can spend as much
time as possible in powersave mode.
- Don't ride in the elevators unless absolutely necessary. I can't think
of too many things worse than being stuck in a dark elevator for "not longer
than two hours".
If the power goes out:
Obviously, you won't be able to read this when the power is out. But take
a look at it, and prepare for a power outage. Be aware that power outages
with or without power alerts are not unknown here:
Don't Panic(in large, reassuring letters for Hitchhikers'
Guide to the Galaxy fans)
- If you have an unmanaged host on a UPS, and you have the root password
for it, shut it down gently. If you have a managed host on a UPS, call
NICS. We will try to shut it down, although our first priority is getting
the servers shut down as gently as possible.
- If your computer has already gone down, turn off its power switch if
you can. (If you don't know where the power switch is on your computer, this
is probably not the time to go looking for it) Short blackouts and power
spikes are possible while power is being restored. Also, your computer is
not likely to be happy if it boots up when the power comes back and can't
find the NIS master or the fileserver because they aren't up yet.
- Emergency generators should keep some lights on in the hallways. Go to
a lighted hallway, chat with your floormates, and wait for the power to
come back on.
- Avoid the elevators for 5 minutes after the power comes back on.
It may fluctuate or go out again shortly after coming on.
- Turn your computer back on 10 minutes after the power comes back,
unless told otherwise by NICS. This gives us time to get the servers
up and running, and ensures that your computer will boot up correctly.