Understanding the Risk of Server Failure and How to Bounce Back
When a server goes down, for hours or even just a few minutes, there can be disastrous results for any business. So, what happens if a server goes down for a day or more? It is important to understand what can cause failures, how you can get up and running after an incident, and what you can be doing to protect your businesses from critical service failure.
What is our server used for?
Servers are computers, often seen as rack-mounted hardware, that deliver data and process requests and send that information to other computers either locally or online. Most likely, the server your organization maintains is used to manage email, control network access, manage local printers, store files, and even host your website.
What could cause server failure or downtime?
There are a variety of issues that could cause servers to go down, including hardware failure, viruses, power outages, as well as natural or physical disasters like fires or floods. Any of these issues could cause either minimal downtime or total damage to the hardware.
How do we recover from downtime?
The key to recovery is backups. In case data gets lost or damaged, it is critical that you have recent backups you can use to restore your systems. If hardware has been damaged you may need to replace your server entirely, but your backed-up data will be key in getting your systems up and running once you have restored power and fixed any hardware issues. This is also why it is important to maintain two backups at a time, usually keeping one copy on-site and one copy off-site, or in the cloud.
How to we take proactive action to avoid critical incidents?
The best things you can do to protect against critical incidents are keeping hardware cool and clean, ensuring you have enough space for growing data, staying current on updates, and regularly monitoring performance. It is also important to develop disaster and data recovery plans to prevent major data loss, and long downtimes.
While servers can be easy to forget about or ignore for those outside of your IT organization, they are critical to all aspects of your business. Whether you handle IT in-house or through a Managed Services Provider, make sure your server is up-to-date and meeting your needs. If you are running older hardware or software it may be time to update or move to the cloud.