In the world of online business, server downtime is an unavoidable evil. Such downtime can wreak havoc on your online business, creating untold amounts of stress as you and your team scramble to do what you can to get the server back up and running as quickly as possible or, if you have no control over the downtime, you jump through hoops of fire to do what you can to mitigate the damage that the downtime is causing. If you think server downtime can be avoided, there are some things you need to take into consideration. While you can’t completely avoid server downtime, you can take measures to protect your business from the damage that extended downtime can create.
You Can’t Avoid Downtime Completely
If you think you have safeguarded your server as if it holds the launch codes for nuclear bombs and that downtime isn’t something you need to worry about, there are some things you need to understand. More than 70 percent of businesses have had some form of server downtime in the past 5 years. That downtime didn’t happen because those businesses were careless (although that may be the case for a few). In most cases it happens because downtime is often an unavoidable circumstance.
Almost everyone can agree that you cannot guarantee the constant availability of your server’s power station. Furthermore, you definitely can’t control Mother Nature. If a disaster happens and your server’s power station goes out, your server is going to go down with it. In fact, approximately 40 percent of server service interruptions are caused by power station failures.
Next in the line of causes of server downtime issues are hardware failures. Approximately 25 percent of server downtime can be attributed to hardware failures. You can have the best hardware money can buy and you may maintain it as if your business’s life depends on it (as it does), but that doesn’t mean that you will not experience a mechanical failure at some point in time. When hardware fails, and it will, your server will go down for the count until the problem has been corrected.
Another big chunk of server downtime is caused by software failures. In fact, 13 percent of server downtime is caused by a software failure. Perhaps an update was misconfigured or a severe bug found its way into your software. Whatever the case may be, all that software that your server is running makes it vulnerable to downtime issues.
But Wait, You Have an Up-time Guarantee!
You may think that all of the above is probably true for other businesses, but not yours. After all, your server provider offers you an up-time guarantee of 99.5 percent, right? That may sound good to you on the surface, but when you do the math, that means your server can be expected to go down for more than 40 hours a year. Unless your business can stand to lose 40 hours a year in profits, then that guarantee really doesn’t help you much. You need to take matters into your own hands when it comes to protecting the up-time of your server.
Putting Server Monitoring to Work For Your Business
While you can’t completely prevent server downtime, you can minimize it and mitigate the damage such downtime can cause. By putting a quality server monitoring service to work for your business, you can be notified of downtime the moment it happens. If your server goes down at 3 am, you’ll find out about it via a phone call or text message rather than finding out five hours later when you check in at the office. That is five hours of time that you will be spending getting your server back online or putting fail safes into place rather than sleeping the hours away in ignorant bliss. After all, every minute of downtime equals profits lost. By being notified of downtime the moment it happens, you can get to work faster to fix the problem and minimize losses.
Furthermore, a server monitoring service can alert you of issues before downtime actually occurs. Sometimes there are telltale signs that a server is going to go down. If your server monitoring service notifies you of performance issues that may be indicative that downtime is on the horizon, you can do whatever is necessary to get the server functioning properly again and avoid that bout of impending downtime from happening.
While server downtime may not be completely avoidable, a server monitoring service can help you minimize the amount of downtime you experience and can help you minimize the damage any downtime may cause by providing you with prompt notifications and putting time on your side.