A) 19″ Living Rack

Project developed by Léa Pereyre

19” Living Rack is an open source variation around the standardized 19” computer server rack (or cabinet). Dedicated to be distributed in domestic environments for personal or for small size community uses, the modular base of the standard rack is getting combined with additional functions, to address this renewed small office/home office context.

In making clear reference to the famous Ch. Eames toy, the modular House of Cards project, the 19” Living Rack comes in one technical “Base” that can then be combined and customized into three different types: “Office”, “Home”, and “Garden”, to set up personal and somehow undersized data centers.

For each configuration, air flows have been taken into consideration and act as design and functional factors: the air in the front part of the rack remains temperate before entering the rack and cooling the servers, while the back and top air flows are getting warmed up and dried due to the computers heating process. “Office” functions comes therefore mainly in the front part of the rack, “Home” on the back where elements can be tempered or dried, while “Garden” comes on the top, equipped with moistened plants to clean, re-humidify, perfume and cool down the air.

Access the 19″ Living Rack cookbook containing links to all necessary manuals, “recipes” and blueprints to produce it on your own.



Quick recipe:

1° Download and read the manual. Define how many servers you’ll need to install (this might have an effect on the number of racks you’ll have to assemble).

2° Download the 19” Living Rack full pack (ZIP), choose the configuration you are interested in (“Base” alone, or “Base” + “Office”, “Base” + “Home”, “Base” + “Garden”).

3° Check the files and then CNC the elements you’ll need in the chosen plywood (18mm) that you’ll have previously ordered.

4° Acquire the necessary additional material (straps, plants, etc.)

5° Would you like to configure the “Base” + “Garden” extension, please choose from the following green plants to further equip the rack: peace lily, florist chrysanthemum, spider plant, bamboo palm or red-edged dracaena that will all better clean the air (according to NASA’s studies). Note that the side effect of this “air cleaning” factor is that their leaves are all toxic to eat for cats, dogs and … humans too!

6° Assemble the entire rack base and extension by following the instructions in the manual. Keep the resulting assembly strongly tight together with 5cm straps.

7° Equip your rack with additional 2.5cm straps to hold your choice of servers, computers, screens and other material.



19″ Living Rack – “Base” serves as the main element for the assembly of DIY domestic or personal racks. It is composed of a set of plywood elements that can be interchanged to meet different needs.



19″ Living Rack – “Office” extension allows to extend the “Base” configuration towards small offices needs. A table extends the front of the rack, where air is supposed to remain more “fresh” (before entering the rack to cool the servers therefore). Woodboards of different sorts help customize the assembly.



19″ Living Rack – “Home” extension let extend the “Base” configuration towards some domestic needs, by taking into account the “warming” and “drying” factors of cloud processing and servers activity. At the back of the rack, where the air is hot and dry, can be installed parts to hang or keep elements that would take benefit of the climatic particularities. These could be wood or aromatic plants to dry, or maybe towels. It could also be pyjamas or slippers to warm before wearing, etc.



19″ Living Rack – “Garden” extension allows to transform and extend the “Base” configuration into some kind of “winter garden”. To do so, the new configuration tries to moderate the warming and drying effects of the computing machines by introducing moisturized and air-cleaning plants. Coming at the top of the rack, where the air is the hottest, these green plants serve the purpose of cleaning, re-humidifying and perfuming the air. It can then re-enter a new cycle.

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