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  1. #1
    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 4dhosting.co.uk 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
    www.isleofwightcheese.co.uk
    www.robertusherphotography.com
    www.nutriculture.com

    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.
    Regards
    Ian
    Please visit http://www.quicktimevirtualreality.com as this is my little baby. Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Chattanooga
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    8,926
    Ian,

    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.
    David
    Fused

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    3,519
    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.
    Tony B. - Chief Executive Officer
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  4. #4
    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.
    DawHB.com - Web Hosting Blog | VPSHostDir.com - VPS Hosting Media

  5. #5
    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 www.httpme.com, which has been around for years, and has a solid reputation for good value.
    Want to sell domain names? Sign up today for an eNom.com reseller account from a trusted eNom ETP provider.
    * We provide support and service to over 3245 happy eNom domain name and SSL certificate resellers!

  6. #6
    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.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Texas, where else?
    Posts
    1,571

    Cool

    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.
    New Idea Hosting NO Overselling-Business-Grade, Shared Only! New-In House Design Team.
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  8. #8
    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.

  9. #9
    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

    Hello,

    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,
    John

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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

    Just for the record I DON'T recommend www.4dhosting.com 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 http://www.quicktimevirtualreality.com as this is my little baby. Thanks

  10. #10
    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.
    PrimeHost Inc. - Canadian Web Hosting PrimeHost.ca - Canada's Prime Web Host
    █ Reliable Web Hosting for Business and Personal Websites on Canadian Servers

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    North East UK
    Posts
    32
    NEWSFLASH!!!!!

    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 www.solidhost.com, any experience or reviews about these guys.

    As not found any negative feedback through here about them.
    Please visit http://www.quicktimevirtualreality.com as this is my little baby. Thanks

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Location
    Paradise
    Posts
    11,648
    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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  13. #13
    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.

  14. #14
    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.
    HostCaters.com - Quality Web Hosting - Under A Gig! - Since 1999

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    2,883
    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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  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Surrounded By SigSpammers
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    587
    Quote Originally Posted by alex-developer View Post
    why? looking on our uptime history for last year we had 100% uptime for 6 month out of 12.
    Wow, there's a great marketing slogan...

    "We have 100% uptime 50% of the time."

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    779
    The reason why it would be atronomical is due to the costs of getting a truly redundant sytem. There are so many things that are out of the web hosts hands when it comes with providing a website for a customer that you simply can not guarantee 100%.

    At that rate we'll have hosts popping up with unlimited disk space, unlimited bandwidth and 100% uptime all for U$1.99 per annum.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Norfolk, UK
    Posts
    134
    You can never guarantee uptime you should state what it has been rather than what you expect it to be. 99.99% sounds acceptable to me but I know a lot of hosts who say that but do not have it.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    779
    Well you can guarantee uptime in that you will reimburse the user. For instance we do guarantee uptime and offer 40% of the bill back if the the downtime exceeds the guarantee.

    So it's basically telling the user that you are so commited to your uptime that if you don't meet the required downtime you will pay him back.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Edinburgh
    Posts
    3,878
    hmm....

    I would suggest looking in the "hosting offers" section and get a new reseller account as quickly as possible, because it might not be too much longer before more if not all your customers lose faith with all the downtime you're experiencing.

    OWM
    ()
    Life's what you make it.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    299
    I would suggest looking for a new host, downtime every week for extended period probably means that there are more problem that they can control.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    EU - east side
    Posts
    21,913
    To get true 100% uptime the costs would be astronomical.
    True 100% would mean attaining perfection. That's an utopia. There is always a scenario that would lead to less than 100%.

    However, given the pricing structure at 4dhosting, they should be able to afford the necessary technology and manpower to maintain very high levels of uptime. The kind of issues that the OP has dealt with are hardly acceptable, even in a budget hosting environment.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    San Diego, CA, USA
    Posts
    690
    First, " I'm with 4dhosting.co.uk and every week we have major downtime of over 12 hrs per period." What are you waiting for? You should move as soon as possible.

    Also once you migrate sites smoothly, you don't have to worry about client's OutLook setting. They should able to use it without problem.
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  24. #24
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    North East UK
    Posts
    32
    Quote Originally Posted by iHubNet View Post
    Also once you migrate sites smoothly, you don't have to worry about client's Outlook setting. They should able to use it without problem.
    Many years ago, we tried using the mailserver normal name mail.newworlddesigns.co.uk for example, but it didn't work, so 4D advised we use truewebmail.co.uk instead which is their mail server name.

    So all of our clients are set up on 4Ds mail server name, not the normal one, so if (i mean when) we move, we will have a catastrophic issue with changing all the email accounts for everybody on each website.

    One company has over 30 users on each of their own PC!

    I received this this morning form the MD, but its the only email i did receive this morning mind you, as they are no longer working again!

    Hi Ian,

    I apologise you were having issues for so long - The email servers in particular Merak have been a thorn in our side but due to the way HELM/Merak works it has been very hard to migrate away from the platform but we will be completing this during the next week.

    All new emails should have been coming through since around 4pm yesterday and historical email will be restored today as they are on the storage server we use for mail but Merak can't access it.

    It would appear Merak throws random errors and problems at certain levels of mail loading which we reach at random intervals, largely due to spam, and these errors have caused the issues you experienced yesterday.

    We will be completing the migration away from Merak during the next 7 days so these issues should be behind us.

    David.
    I have received similar emails like this over the last 18 months mind you lol.

    http://www.4dhosting.info/viewforum....daf3a2b256b8ec

    Even on his support site, which you can all see above, it says about how he will be doing this that and other, which has never happened.

    It also says about the problems i had yesterday, which is great, as it proves I'm telling the truth and not just being malicious towards his company.

    Has anybody heard of www.solidhost.com and if they are any good, or at least any bad stuff?
    Please visit http://www.quicktimevirtualreality.com as this is my little baby. Thanks

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    127.0.0.1
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    3,635
    Hmmm.... you sure it's not a DNS issue? If a message is recieved locally but not externally - that could point to a DNS issue.
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