A client recently asked if we could add another server to their network without having to add another UPS — they had a UPS with plenty of surplus capacity, but the serial cable from the UPS went to a Windows Server 2003 to provide for the (essential!) soft shutdown. However, I would be installing a Linux server. How to get the two to get along?
One solution is using the Network UPS Tools or NUT for short. On this page Jeremy Herr explains how he set up one Linux machine and two Windows machines off a single UPS. One machine connects to the UPS and monitors the UPS status. NUT is set up as a couple of modules: the server (daemon) monitors the UPS, client software talks to the server. Normally, the client software is on the same machine as the server, but multiple machines can run the client software and communicate over a network to the server, provided each of the components is configured properly. Cool architecture!