The worst cable mess ever


  1. “Mess”, no, beyond “mess”. “Chaos”? No. It’s hardly stronger
    than a mess. “Nightmare”? Yes, that begins to capture it.
    Perhaps with a few more adjectives: Unbelievably outrageous nightmare
    That’s more like it.

  2. Obviously the yellow cables are inbound links, the lemon cables are DMZ and the gold cables are from the serial annex. Sheesh, its as if you guys have never had a gay network administrator before!

  3. I don’t see any cows, so why do we have straw bails in the middle of the data center? And would some one put the spooled up milking stool away before some one trips and breaks their neck!

  4. all I can say is
    “welcome to the jungle, gets worse here every day…”

    I really hope they have l3 switches that have decent management capability to show you what’s on what port….

    I also wonder how close they are to the 100m limit just getting across the server room 😛

  5. @brooce: wireless is nice for an end user but not a data centre. Trust me.

    And yes, I have heard of wireless fools. Seems like you are one of them.

  6. I agree, job security. Only the guy who wired it knows how it all works. Way to go, old school. Though it looks almost like that under my desk at home. Ah, old school.

  7. This is impossible, it can’t work.Don’t you see it? That yellow cable at the far end there is in the wrong place. Sheesh

  8. I hate to be the one to say this, but it isn’t as bad as it looks. It looks on close inspection that the cables were set in layers, and that sets of cables are tied together. It probably doesn’t happen very often that a single cable needs to be replaced — you likely swap out a whole crate when something goes wrong, and then troubleshoot the part of the crate offline, while the rest of the cluster is still online — wheel it back in mostly wired, and then add the longer cables in. But it sure does look crazy!

  9. Honestly, who designed this mess? There has GOT to be a better way. Although it does look pretty cool. Hope whoever hooked it up made no mistakes – debugging that would be a nightmare.

  10. I’ll bet it looked great when the guys who did the structured cabling walked out the door. Not so good two days after though…

  11. I worked there last summer as a temp Rack and Stack Engineer. It’s a very large datacenter in St. Louis, Missouri. I believe the guys there called it “the wall if despair” I actually did some cable tracing.

    That’s crazy I wanted to take a pic of it so bad, but if they even seen you with a cell phone in the Datacenter it was immediate termination.

  12. This picture is of Lehman Brothers World Financial Center 3 data center. Pre 9/11 it was the primary Data center, post 9/11 this site was breached by the dust and written off completely. Which was a good thing since there was no other way to fix that mess. Days were lost just trying to trace a single connection. There is a smaller gray version of this wall one of the NJ data centers thats still in use. 🙁

  13. name? you wanna name? Jimmy Hoffa! Howz that for name?..I’ll even tell you that he’s in still gotta find ‘im.

  14. Good lord.. if there are servers or network gear behind that mess, I wonder how hot they’re running? There’s 0 air flow!!!

  15. It seems like a joke (just made to take this wonderful photo) …
    because there is no cable mess in the racks standing deep in the room …
    If this is real production conditions there must be enormous cooling capacities to cool down anything behind this yellow wall (if there isn’t – these cables would be black in a photo … after fire) 🙂

  16. Eh, I’ve seen worse. Was asked to decode a hand – wired microprocessor in 1983 when I was a Mechanical Engineering Student at University of Wisconsin – Madison. Around this time, computer kits were your only option. Only slight regret I declined.

    Stuart E Fiedler, PE
    Fiedler Engineering / Consulting

  17. In response to aliuxx’s comment, there isn’t a mess like this on the racks in the background because those are the back sides of other several-U-thick equipment with what looks like only power cables connected on that side.

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