Disasters Don’t Need to Happen! 10 Causes of Downtime Under Your Control
Disaster recovery plans are important to keep businesses operational in case of an outage. It’s even better to prevent outages and avoid the need for disaster recovery. To do that, you need to identify preventable causes of outages. They include:
1. Human error.
Human error is a big factor in downtime. People make mistakes! However, preventing these kinds of errors doesn’t simply mean firing low-performing employees. The human errors that cause outages often result from management and architectural decision. The management failures that lead to human error include not providing enough training and understaffing, leaving employees overworked and unprepared for outages. Architectural decisions can lead to overcomplex infrastructure that’s difficult to monitor and manage. A failure to invest in automation means the business relies on fallible human memory and typing skills.
2. Lack of redundancy.
Server and storage failures happen, but redundant infrastructure minimizes the impact and can make the failure nearly transparent to end users.
3. Lack of maintenance.
Falling behind on installing patches leaves systems vulnerable to known bugs. Implement a patch management process that keeps you up to date with changes.
4. Usage spikes.
Systems often fail when the load unexpected intensifies. These outages may have been acceptable when spare capacity meant investing in infrastructure that largely sat idle. Today, however, using cloud means spare capacity is readily available, and well-designed systems can scale automatically.
5. Local weather conditions.
You can’t control the weather. But cloud means you have access to infrastructure located in a variety of geographical locations. Using cloud can insulate systems from the effect of local conditions.
6. Third-party outages.
When you’re dependent on a single vendor, if that vendor goes down, so do you. Using a multicloud strategy protects cloud-based applications from being impacted by issues at a single cloud provider.
Viruses, ransomware, and other forms of malware can bring systems down. Protect against these threats through good cybersecurity practices and tools including firewalls and antivirus software.
8. Obsolete systems and equipment.
Software and hardware that’s no longer supported is no longer protected against the latest threats, and while software doesn’t fail simply due to age, hardware can. Be sure to track end of life and end of support dates and update applications and hardware to keep on supported versions.
9. Lack of monitoring.
If you can address an issue when it’s small, you can minimize its effect on the business. Poor monitoring means you aren’t aware of problems until they’re already big enough to make a significant impact on the system.
10. Poor deployment planning.
Failed deployments bring systems down. Every release plan should include a process for falling back to the previous version in case of problems.
You can reduce the risk of an outage from all of these issues with IT management and infrastructure support services from Prescient Solutions. Combined with a comprehensive disaster recovery solution, you’ll reduce the risk of outages and minimize downtime when one unavoidably occurs. Contact Prescient Solutions to learn more about how you can defend against downtime.