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Whats Acceptable Downtime

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Junior Guru Wannabe
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: North East UK
Posts: 32

Whats Acceptable Downtime

I know the answer is obviously zero, but what is the acceptable downtime that should be tolerated by hosting companies.

I'm with and every week we have major downtime of over 12 hrs per period.

I'm only on a reseller package with this company, but i have 50 websites (all small one man companies) with them.

I haven't received an email (including spam) through any of 7 domains i have personally set up and going through this hosting. Since 21.24pm last night, it is now 13.45pm today not one email, and i have sent testers to my self form hotmail etc, none going in, and none going out, but outlook says send and receive completed as if the server is empty.

I usually receive an email every min or less, as one of the domain names has a catch all account.

Over last Xmas, websites and emails were down for 6days solid and he blamed huge spam increase crashing the systems, but most of my clients didn't notice as it was Xmas, except one who then left me for this exact reason.

Over the last 24 months i have lost 6 clients, 3 major ones

I am pulling my hair out, what can i do apart from leaving them, as file transfers, setting up databases, FTP accounts and emails on all those domains and then showing the clients how to fix their settings on Outlook etc is going to be a nightmare.

Any help or guidance will be gratefully accepted.

Please visit as this is my little baby. Thanks

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& Goliath
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Chattanooga
Posts: 8,921

Those numbers are completely unacceptable. You should be aiming for 99.9% or higher, leaving you at 40 minutes or less per month of downtime.

Obviously, the less the better & most providers should easily be able to reach much higher than that on a monthly basis. 99.9% uptime is only about 12 hours of downtime per year in total. Mmm, if that's occurring on a monthly basis: move.

It is obviously having a major effect on your business as a whole, your clients are beginning to lose trust in yourself as well. It sounds like your provider is running a hobby shop -- 6 days of downtime for some "spam", ha. I've seen providers with less downtime as a result of servers lighting on fire.


Corporate Member
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 3,490
I agree with David on this 12 hours of down time every week is totally unacceptable. Good hosts range in the area of 99.9% to 99.99% for the most part.

Now for moving what control panel do they use? If it is cPanel for example most cPanel hosts will restore cpanel backup files for you without a charge. So you would not need to setup accounts again or anything of that nature.

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: New York
Posts: 1,156
"Every week downtime" is not acceptable one. You don;t have to have downtime more than few times a year and it must not be significant at all. I know many decent hosts who can afford to invest in good network so all other odvantages of theirs worth very little.

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Mr. Awesome
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 6,069
The fact that you said, "he blames huge spam increases"... means that your current host is a one-man operation?

If so, then it is not surprising there is so much downtime. What if "he" is having a poop when your server dies? He won't even know about it for at least a few minutes.. and unless he's got a terminal in the shower, you better hope he doesn't like long showers.

And pray he does not have a girlfriend who doesn't like being interrupted during copulation.

You are best to find a better solution for your company to depend on. I recommend, which has been around for years, and has a solid reputation for good value.

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Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 15
Well agreed. A host should never be down specially when its a business your running and they are serving business customers. 98ish% is acceptable but really 100% would be great.

Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Texas, where else?
Posts: 1,571

Agreed. 99.9 is a number to shoot for for sure; BUT mainly, regular downtime is never acceptable (like every week--sheesh!)
Any good data center has a 4 hour maximum SLA for catastrophic hardware failure (the server totally fries) less if it's just a disk or something, and that's a hardware issue... so something is wrong with this set-up somewhere.
He blames it on spam??? He doesn't have anti-spam of some sort to just bounce it all

All sounds fishy to me.

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Web Hosting Evangelist
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 500
Httpme has poor uptimes - from when I was searching their uptime records. Especially for the price you'd be paying.

Now back to the original post, 12 hours per period, is totally unacceptable and ridiculous to say the least.

Most hosts will display 99.9% uptime, which works out to 42 mins per month. But make sure the downtime is server and not network. If they are sayin network, ask for server uptime and make sure their is some sort of credit or consumption if the uptime is below 99.9% or whatever uptime you find acceptable.


Junior Guru Wannabe
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: North East UK
Posts: 32
Ive Just been sent this through the support ticket system (the time here now is 18.30pm, 21hrs after it all stopped working)


Posted On: 04 Aug 2007 03:28 PM


Our apologies for the downtime as our mailserver has had a critical software issue occur overnight. We are working hard to resolve this, please be patient as we work to solve this error.

Best Regards,


And yes, I'm still not getting any emails, its now been 21 dam hours!!!!

Just for the record I DON'T recommend in any form what so ever, and for some stupid reason i have been with them since 2003. But in their defence, they were superb then and I never had any issues until 18 months ago, but they never stop having problems now.

The server i have is a windows server with Helm and yes before you all start harping on about windows vs Linux, i know all that story but like i said, its the emails that's the issue, not the server.

But about 30% of my sites are MSSQL and ASP, so i haven't the choice really.

I use a WHM and Cpanel VPS regular from an agency i work for, and i have to say Helm is light-years ahead in user friendliness.

I hate the fact you have to keep signing in and out all the time to access different accounts (unless there is something i have missed), it drive me nuts and file permissions on a Linux is even more annoying, especially when working with Joomla which uses a lot of self installers, which then prevents you from having access.

Please visit as this is my little baby. Thanks

WHT Addict
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 163
Ouch, this is obviously affecting your business. 12 hours plus of downtime on a monthly basis is not acceptable.

If I were in your position I would be looking for a different provider or looking at getting my own server.

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Junior Guru Wannabe
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: North East UK
Posts: 32

My emails are working again.

I only know this as i just received the subscription email to Icecreams reply above.

I haven't received any of the other emails, so i would imagine they are lost for ever in the 4D hole of hell.

I think i will need to take your advice, and look for another hosting company.

Been looking at, any experience or reviews about these guys.

As not found any negative feedback through here about them.

Please visit as this is my little baby. Thanks

Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Paradise
Posts: 11,633
I hate the fact you have to keep signing in and out all the time to access different accounts (unless there is something i have missed),
You can access to each site Cpanel from your WHM, list the accounts and click on the Cpanel icon.

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 779
High uptime is a must but downtime is a fact of life. To get true 100% uptime the costs would be astronomical.

We have a 99.5% uptime guarantee but obviously strive for better. I don't think you can honestly expect a host to fulfill a 99.99% promise but I do agree that 12 hours a pop is a huge number unless there were some catastrophic failures at the datacenter.

Texas Female
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 3,689
Well clearly you've had enough problems that you SHOULD BE researching other providers at this point.
I agree with others that the downtime is UN-acceptable.
Your upstream is a reflection of "you"
Your choice though.

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Web Hosting Master
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 2,821
standard uptime is 99.9%, with Failover hosting should be 100% but it is too early for market to guarantee that.
The rest companies who is offer 99.99% they simply lie about the uptime.

To get true 100% uptime the costs would be astronomical.
why? looking on our uptime history for last year we had 100% uptime for 6 month out of 12.

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