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February 22, 2006

Downtime and its consequences

Posted 4314 days ago on February 22, 2006

ITWriting.com including this blog was offline for just over seven hours today. My apologies. The ISP muttered about power outages and hardware failure; but I'm treating it as a wake-up call. The growing importance of the internet means that we are increasingly dependent on our web sites and web services. Strategies for backup and resilience that made sense a few years back may now be inadequate; they will become even more so.

This was brought home to me with force during this last outage. The failure affected a large number of other customers who use the same hosting service, and we commiserated in an online forum. Many were resellers who were trying to explain the outage to their equally unhappy clients. Everyone was losing business; one mentioned the threat of bankruptcy if poor service continued.

Anyone can suffer an outage; what's important is to make a sane assessment of what extended downtime might cost, and to plan accordingly.

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