There are multiple reasons why your site has downtime. In this power-packed 20 minute video, I cover the causes for downtime, what to do if your site is down, and super ways to prevent it.
Full show notes are below the replay.
In this show I cover:
- Causes of downtime
- Resources to monitor downtime
- Downtime prevention
- What to do if your host is down for days
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Causes of Downtime
- Host maintenance – hosts hate to give customers downtime, so if they need to do this, know it’s for a good reason
- Cloud proxy disconnect – like CloudFlare timeouts. Even when that’s reported, it may not be the fault of CloudFlare.
- Site under attack – you may need to contact the host to see what IP addresses are pummeling your site. A good WAF (firewall) will stop this for you. CloudFlare and Sucuri offer WAF as a paid service.
- Host under attack – Botnets gang up on whole servers and the host may need to either use mitigation services, which will cause sites to run slow, but that’s better than down. And, if the attack is bad enough, they will have to shut down the server to protect it.
- Resource overages – you may not have enough resource headroom on your hosting account to handle legit traffic plus bot hits. Or, you may have super resource hog plugins. A site audit can help you determine such issues.The reality is, no host is immune from these issues anymore. Hopping host to host is not a good practice because there is nowhere to go where this won’t happen.
Resources to Monitor Downtime
- Uptime Robot is my favorite site monitoring tool. The free version pings your site every 5 minutes, which is plenty.Pingdom also has a monitoring tool, but it pings too often, in my opinion, and gives too many false positives.
- Both will send emails when your site is down. Don’t panic!!!!! And don’t go chasing ghosts that you can’t fix. See the video for more details.
- Secure your site with hack protection and by limiting excessive hits.
- Reduce resources like hog plugins, bot crawls, redirect abuse, and image file size.
- Set up both local and cloud caching. CloudFlare has an Always On feature that will continue to deliver a cached version of your site even when your hosting is down for a few hours.
What to do when your host is down for days
You may need to make an emergency move to another host. Tips to make that a smooth migration include:
- Have your own full backup stored off your site that you know how to restore. May favorite service is VaultPress Lite. See my video tutorial with 4 tips to save you money and performance.
- Get your email off your hosting. Otherwise, you can’t get a cPanel backup to migrate fully. See my post for why else you need to move your email to a 3rd party service.
- Know how to point your DNS, or domain, to a new host. This is part of the migration and you need to know how to do it yourself, especially if you’re using a cloud proxy like CloudFlare.