XServe 5G Power Supply Repair – Delta DPS-400Gb-1 (614-0264)

I have two XServe G5 servers that I haven’t used as web/database servers in a long time, but I do use them for other stuff (backup destination, historical monitoring of other hardware, etc.)

I haven’t had any problems with them in the 11 years that I’ve had them, except now both died within a week of each other (specifically, both power supplies died). Which I guess says something about manufacturing consistency to have both die at the same time. ūüôā

I had a new spare because way back in the day I bought the XServe service parts kit (included spare motherboard, power supply, fans, etc.), so getting one of them back online was no big deal. Searching around to buy another one, and the power supplies are like $400. Yeah, no thanks… not for a machine that probably isn’t even worth that much as a whole.

So instead of spending $400, let’s see how nerdy I can be and just replace all the capacitors in the power supply for closer to $10 in parts and see what happens… You could actually get the parts for $1-2 if you are okay with getting junky capacitors, but probably a good idea to replace capacitors in a server power supply with good ones. ūüôā

These are the capacitors I need:

1uF 50V
10uF 25V
22uF 25V
47uF 16V
47uF 50V
100uF 25V x2
100uF 35V x2
1000uF 16V x2
2200uF 16V x2

The place I got my capacitors didn’t have the 1uF or 10uF radial ones I needed, so I ended up getting a tantalum capacitor for the 1uF one and then a radial 10uF 50V instead of the 25V (you can use a higher voltage as long as the microfarad rating is the same).

C10: 47uF 50V
C103: 2200uF 16V
C104: 2200uF 16V
C111: 1000uF 16V
C112: 1000uF 16V
C350: 1uF 50V
C353: 100uF 25V
C900: 100uF 25V
C901: 100uF 35V
C903: 47uF 16V
C905: 10uF 25V
C907: 100uF 35V
C909: 22uF 25V

Long story short is that both power supplies work now after replacing the capacitors in them. ūüôā

My CloudFlare Wishlist

First off, let me say that I love CloudFlare… and coming from me, that probably means something because there aren’t a lot of third party services that I think are great. But CloudFlare is one of those.

That being said, I still have a list of things I wish CloudFlare did (or did differently):

  • Have a “failover host” option for individual DNS records. ¬†For example route to host X, but if host X is down, route to host Y. ¬†Yes, I know you can do DNS management with the CloudFlare API, and I built a system that monitors servers and switches them if needed via DNS API. ¬†Just would be simpler if we had a “failover host” option.
  • Allow wildcard domain records to route through CloudFlare. ¬†This would be way more convenient.
  • Make the Authy two-factor code last longer (like 30 days for that computer?). ¬†It’s obnoxious that you have to generate a new two-factor code while being on the same computer every other day.
  • Geotargeting granularity. ¬†It would be nice if CloudFlare could geotarget more than the country… like long/lat/city level would be nice.
  • WebSockets support. ¬†Yes, I know it supports WebSockets for Enterprise users… and while I’m on a paid plan, I’m not on the Enterprise tier. ¬†Update:¬†from the comments on this blog post, it looks like it might be coming. ¬†Yay!
  • Prepayment. ¬†For paid plans, I don’t know what happens if your monthly payment doesn’t go through for some reason, but I don’t want to find out. It would be nice if you could just be like, “I want to prepay for the next year so there’s no service interruption”.
  • Use HTTP/2 To Origin. ¬†Cloudflare doesn’t use SPDY or HTTP/2 to the origin server even when available. See: this tweet
  • Sync Data Centers. ¬†Cloudflare data center caching is great, but as more and more data centers come online, the benefit diminishes. Right now there are 74 Cloudflare data centers, which means a resource is requested 74 times (once per data center) for caching.
  • Email¬†routing. ¬†It would be nice if you didn’t have to expose your server’s true IP addresses when sending an email (or just from your SPF records in your DNS). ¬†Having a service that lets your mail servers relay email through and erase the originating IP from the email header in the process would be super fantastic. ¬†Probably would be problematic because of potential spam implications, but it sure would be nice to have truly¬†hidden server IPs without needing to get separate servers in a separate location for email.

CloudFlare is super rad and if you own a website without using it (even their free plan), you are doing it wrong. ¬†ūüôā

Whirlpool Smart Washer & Drier

Connecting To Network

…skip to the end of this post if you are just trying to figure out how to connect these appliances to the network/Internet (that was the whole reason I wrote it, but it became kind of long-winded… hah).

My drier died recently, so it was time to buy a new washer and drier set. I ended up getting the new Whirlpool “smart” washer and drier with their “6th Sense Live” or whatever you want to call it. Basically they allow you to manage and view energy usage, have a companion mobile app, allow you to schedule the best times to run (based on electricity rates in your area), etc. For reference, the washer is model: WFL98HEBU, and the drier is model: WEL98HEBU.

The electricity saving stuff wasn’t a huge deal for me since I’m on solar and generate more electricity than I use. But being a stats nerd and a nerd in general, the other stuff sounded straight pimpin’.

Got them installed without any issues… fired them up and after poking around in the menus, I couldn’t find anywhere where you could configure it’s network connectivity (which I know they have/need). Opened up the manuals even (lol, wut???), and not a single word or mention of how to get these things on the network. If you don’t believe, me you can look at the manual online over here.

There was no “separate manual”, no nothing for connecting these things.

Finally, after mucking with the interface to no avail for about an hour, I opened up the door to get the model number so I could Google about how to set it up. Also nothing… WTF? Is this thing a scam? Does it not really even have connectivity?

Low and behold, I when opening the door, I noticed something… a sticker with some info… the Mac address, SSID and SAID. So I’m thinking to myself, “Why does this thing have an SSID? Does it have a wifi base station?” Sure enough, after grabbing my iPhone, and looking for wifi networks, there were 2 new wifi networks near me… one for the washer and one for the drier. If you try to log into them, they require a password… which just happens to work with the SAID on that sticker. Open up a web browser and you are given nothing but an option but to connect to the real wifi network (and you can enter a password for it). Rinse and repeat for the drier, and we are online! Sure would have been nice for them to mention that in the manuals.

Here’s the short version of this story… if you don’t know how to get your WFL98HEBU washer or WEL98HEBU drier connected to the Internet, they have their own networks you need to log into in order to configure their connectivity.

That being said, it’s a pretty cool washer/drier pair even if the manual sucks.