I currently have a reseller account (that is substantially over $10) with a hosting comapny. The downtime is terrible, and customer service used to be good, but after about 10 tickets they seem to ignore me.
With this in mind, I was wondering if if would be possible to purchase a couple of these sub $10 dirt-cheap deals, and play with the DNS settings so if one was down, it smoothly went from one host to another.
I think this could be done easily just by listing more than one nameserver, but then mail etc when the backup host was being used would get a bit confused, and may go to a mailbox on the backup server, never to be checked again.
Has anyone got any experience of this?
( there is another thread in this forum about sub $10 hosts, but this is a question of playing with DNS over a few servers to increase apparent uptime, rather than being price specific. )
With reseller hosting constraints I don't think a failover system is really possible. It would be better to find just one reliable host to serve your clients
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If your first name server is unavailable then the next name server listed would be used. This means you've got dns redundancy with all your hosts ie primary is ns1.host1.com, secondary is ns1.host2.com etc.
But quite often you will find that the DNS will still be up, but the web or mail server may be down. In each of the DNS records you can specify an A Address for a host ie www.mysite.com points to 192.x.x.x, this is for a website. An MX record is used for a mail server. I'm not sure you can have multiple A addresses for the same host, but you can have multiple MX records for your mail servers which will allow redunancy for them.
While this would cover the dns and mail, it wouldn't cover the web server (assumably you can't change the dns records - the A address of the your site - with host1 while host1's webserver is down)..
Another approach might be to use a very reliable dns server and then run a script that checks the availability of your hosts, if one goes down it updates this dns server with the new hosts details (you're not changing the name server ips only the records so it shouldn't take long at all to propagate).
Obviously you can imagine the horror in trying to sync all of this data - all of your customers accounts/website/mail data every few minutes between all the hosts. Maybe you could only sync the data thats changed but still this would take a lot of work.
I agree with elix it would be better to find just one reliable host to serve your clients
Well what I was thinking is using one of the accounts as a main account, and sync them every evening on a cron. That way, if the main host only had 99.9% uptime (still 45 mins down per month) there would be something other than just an unprofessional timeout message. I can edit my MX records and am going to have a 'play'