I'm giving the name Data Center Games to the set of activities that people make up to have fun while killing large amounts of time while (typically working) in a data center. I have either watched or participated in a bunch of these, and the rest of them come from first-hand stories of the experiences of others. These games generally display an alarming lack of responsibility on the part of the participants, but may well, at the same time, amuse you.

Caution! Some of these activities are dangerous to your life, limb, or employment. These descriptions are presented for entertainment purposes only. Any loss incurred while engaging in these games can not be pinned on the author(s) of these nodes.


Floor puller
This is typically a hand-held aluminum frame with two large suction cups and a spring-loaded suction release valve mechanism. When slapped against a Floor Tile, the suction allows the user to lift the tile up and out of the raised gridwork in which it normally rests. This process gives the user access to the space under the floor. There are other designs, but the operational point is the same. Vent Tiles sometimes require a lifting tool that looks vaguely like a bent screwdriver because there is not enough flat surface on which to establish a suction.

Floor tile
These are commonly two foot square insulated tiles that fit in a raised grid of steel supports. The floor tile commonly rests 18-24 inches above the concrete underfloor. There are flat tiles which are the norm and vent tiles which direct cool air into certain parts of the data center. In my experience, Floor Tiles weigh between about 15 and 40 pounds

Ladder rack
Ladder Rack can be placed either below a raised floor or above the racks, but below the ceiling. These racks take many different shapes, but essentially route cables and allow the mounting of equipment in various positions.

Patch Panel
This is a panel of some number of ports used to connect data cables. 48-port RJ-45 panels are very common but there are literally thousands of possible panel configurations. Patch Panels may be racked up en masse at a telecommunications hub or appear alone in a rack full of servers.

Plenum/Raised floor
The Plenum is the area under the Raised Floor through which cold air is circulated to control the temperature in the data center. The plenum also commonly contains cables of all types and purposes as well as plumbing, Ladder Racks, ducts, machinery, security equipment, etc. It is generally frowned on to store odds and ends in the plenum.

Tile lifter
This is the same as the Floor Puller.

Vent tile
The Vent Tiles are also two foot square tiles resting in the raised grid, but these have perforations that allow the cold air in the plenum to penetrate into the data center above. Many vent tiles have adjustable valves that vary the amount of flow-through allowed. The temperature of the data center can be carefully and minutely adjusted using a well designed system of vent tiles.

The Games