In today’s digital world, with the availability of various modern technologies and devices, the businesses ensure that their continuity is ensured 24X7. They rely heavily on the computer systems, so much so that they can’t survive downtime of even a minute, leave alone an hour, as it can cost more than what an organization can afford to lose.

As per a report by Ponemon Institute and Emerson Network Power on US based datacenters, the cost of one minute of complete, unplanned outage across industries is slightly over $7,900 per minute in 2013. It was $5,600 in 2010. “This increase in cost underscores the importance for organizations to make it a priority to minimize the risk of downtime that can potentially cost thousands of dollars per minute,” said Ponemon.

datacenter-downtime-cost-compresion

This shows that the computer downtime is directly proportional to the data loss cost that businesses incur. The more is the downtime, the more are the losses. The industry wise statistics are all the more staggering.

total-industry-cost

In short, no business can afford datacenter or server downtime or system outage as it can bring the business to a complete halt.

An unpredictable downtime or a server failure can not only cost your business millions of dollars but –

  • Loss of potential customers
  • Difficult rebuilding phase
  • Weakened loyalty of your customers
  • Overtime payment to your employees to recoup last hours
  • And, also the effects can far outlast the date of repair.

Since enterprises have become increasingly reliant on their web servers to run their business smoothly, they should know few things that they can do at their end to troubleshoot if any of their servers goes down.

In case the server is inaccessible, here are few steps that you can yourself take to fix web server issues and prevent future problems:

1. How to troubleshoot DNS issues or check an expired domain?

The DNS converts the hostnames into IP addresses that a machine can read. Many a times, your website goes down due to DNS issues. It is like GPS of the web, without which you can get lost quickly. Thus, it’s important to first check your domain registration status. It may be the reason of your site downtime as if it is expired, then your domain registrar company has to change your name server, which may take some time. Often your host may redirect you to a page to remind you to renew your domain. Once the verification confirms, you can check your DNS.

You can use NSLOOKUP command for troubleshooting DNS failures. Simply type NSLOOKUP followed by your hostname in Windows command prompt window. You will get the name and IP address of the host you specified.

For e.g. type c:\>nslookup znetindia.net, you will get the result as below:

Server: win-9s1vvu9qoor.znet.local and IP Address: 172.17.255.254

Finally, one thing to remember, if you have made any DNS changes, it will take 2-24 hours to propagate worldwide and to show up everywhere as the process is not instant.

2. How to resolve any networking problem?

First of all, check the ICMP. Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) is a main protocol of the internet protocol suite, that’s utilized by the network devices, such as routers, for sending error messages, like when a service is unavailable.

If ICMP is disabled or blocked in your firewall, then you can’t troubleshoot your server via internet.

The next thing you should do is to check the issue between you and your server. You can run a traceroute to trace the route from your PC to the server via internet. It will give you an idea about where the network has the issue or where it has broken down.

Here is a website through which you can perform any of the above external tests.

3. How to check if any of the services on the server has crashed?

If you are able to traceroute to the server, then you can check if your essential services are running or not. For example, if you want to check whether they are running, type the server IP or website name http://znetindia.net in the web browser. If you do not get any response, that means services are not working.

You also can check by using telnet command: c:\ telnet znetindia.net 80 (Here 80 is the port number on which HTTP or web service is running).

If you have the server login access, then you can check the status of the service in Windows as well as in Linux through remote desktop connection.

On a Linux server, you can log in through ssh and type the command, service httpd status to check the status of apache and service mysql status to check if your database is running. Whereas, if it’s a Windows server, you can check to see if IIS is running or not.

4. How to check a programming error on the website?

When you browse your website and if it says “Waiting…” or “Connecting…,” then there is a programming error or any misconfiguration. You can get the clues by checking Apache error log. It’s also possible that your website is updating, due to which your PHP or Apache configuration has been changed.

Wrapping up

Configuration issues, networking problems or server running out of disk space or memory are the most common reasons for issues with web servers or database servers.

Thus, it’s advisable to choose a reliable hosting services provider. Although no system can be 100% perfect but a good web host will take all the care to keep you timely informed in case of downtime, and provide you with all the needed support, so that you can take all necessary measures and keep your customers informed for minimizing losses.

With ZNetLive, you get reliable dedicated servers, web hosting services, various managed services and cloud server hosting services with 24X7X365 support from the technical team, which tailors the troubleshooting methods per the needs of the clients.

Services ZNetLive offer:

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In case you have any feedback, drop it in the comment section below. I will be happy to revert.

Statistics Source:

http://www.emersonnetworkpower.com/en-US/About/NewsRoom/NewsReleases/Pages/Emerson-Ponemon-Cost-Unplanned-Data-Center-Outages.aspx

Deepika Rathore

Deepika - a vivacious girl, is a writer by the day and a reader by the night. She writes creative as well as technical content with equal aptness. A Biotechnologist by profession, she loves writing anything that ignites readers' minds. In her leisure time, she likes to listen to soft music. 🙂
Deepika Rathore