Ordinary people do not see server downtime as a big deal and mistakenly believe that it does not affect the company in any way. In fact, the situation is very different, because during the downtime of the server your company incurs substantial losses, and also loses the trust of customers. A vivid example can serve as an online store, whose income directly depends on the availability online. In this instance, in the case of frequent server failures, many users may perceive your service as unreliable.
What is Server Downtime?
Server downtime is the period during which your server is not functioning. This situation can be caused by various factors, such as hardware failures or power supply issues, as well as critical problems with network connectivity and software.
Quantifying the impact of downtime
It is relatively difficult to assess the objective impact of server downtime. Based on data from verified sources, 91% of all enterprises claimed that 1 hour of downtime of critical servers will increase preliminary losses of enterprises by a total amount of $300 thousand dollars. Remember, this amount is not an exact figure, as the actual damage can put a business out of business for days or even weeks.
Common Causes of Server Downtime
Let's understand the most popular reasons why servers can become idle and non-functional. Of course, nowadays there are a huge number of such reasons, but we will consider only the most significant of them.
Some sort of network malfunction is the most common cause of server downtime. A network outage can occur during a power shortage or due to hardware malfunctions.
No matter how you look at it, humans are imperfect and make mistakes all the time. The human factor is the reason why servers crash sometimes. This list includes errors made by specialists, configuration mistakes and incorrect coding methods.
Unforeseen data loss and corruption is not uncommon, so it's worth protecting yourself from it. Do not restore your server using a corrupted backup. Otherwise, recovery may be simply impossible. And the damage caused and time spent on it will result in a long downtime.
Servers are prone to software errors. The list of such errors includes incorrect configuration or the presence of corrupted files. If you wish to completely eliminate the risk of such a problem, ensure that your server is configured correctly.
The list of hardware difficulties includes the failure of the hard disk or the power supply. Special attention should be paid to fans that cool inefficiently, which can eventually lead to server shutdown due to overheating.
Hacker attacks are considered the most popular cause of server downtime. In 2023, the most prevalent attacks by prevalent involve malware forwarding and DDoS attacks.
Best Practices for Preventing Server Downtime
When it comes to downtime, it is important to remember that such situations can be avoided and for this it is enough to follow a few tips. Let's take a look at the most effective recommendations that will significantly fortify your server against unexpected situations.
Regularly Test Backups
Existing backups should be constantly rechecked, as some of them may not function. This will ensure that your server always has a verified backup that can be used at any time. You can use a separate server for verification.
Monitor Sites and Applications to Prevent Server Downtime
Another method to prevent downtime on your server is to monitor your software and sites. In this way, you can get a complete picture of your server's functioning, which will make it easier to identify and rectify problems of any nature.
Make Sure Your Infrastructure Matches Your Needs
Utilizing the necessary computing resources prevents sudden server downtime. To do this, you need to make sure that the available infrastructure is capable of handling your needs. In simple words, the processing power of your system is a key factor, as weak servers are not able to handle large tasks, and this will sooner or later turn into breakdowns and downtime.
How Does Server Downtime Affect You?
Downtime always takes a heavy toll on businesses. Server downtime especially affects businesses that need constant access, such as online retailers. Let's take a look at the main effects that server downtime has on businesses.
Damages Your Reputation
First of all, server downtime affects the reputation of your service, as users begin to doubt its reliability. Keep in mind that target users use your product around the clock, and even a few hours of unavailability can severely slow down the growth of brand popularity.
Affects Sales Negatively
Simply put, if users can't access your site, they won't be able to make purchases. Thus downtime has a negative impact on your sales, and this directly affects the income of the organization.
Lowers Your Customer Satisfaction
A successful business values its loyal customers. Therefore, constant server downtime, resulting in unfulfilled user requests, can lead to significant customer dissatisfaction and potential loss of clientele.
Server Downtime FAQ
What causes server downtime?
The most common causes of downtime are considered to be hardware failures of the server, as well as human error. Special attention should be paid to the backups of your project, as failures in them can also lead to extended downtimes.
How can I prevent server downtime?
There are no simply universal methods to completely eliminate server downtime. However, you can significantly reduce the probability of such an incident by conducting regular checks of all server components, including hardware and software. Consulting with experts and conducting tests in a test environment before making serious decisions is also recommended.
What is network downtime?
Downtime refers to a period during which the network is unavailable or not functioning properly, preventing normal communication or access to resources.
How do you reduce downtime?
If you find that your server is experiencing downtime, you should promptly investigate and address the problem. This may involve checking recent changes for errors or consulting with IT specialists. Implementing robust monitoring solutions, maintaining up-to-date backups, and having a well-documented recovery plan can also help in reducing downtime. If the issue cannot be resolved quickly, using a backup copy of the project might be necessary. Regular training and awareness among the team members about best practices can further enhance the resilience against downtime.