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How do you define down time?

By james.patrick ·
What level of up time does your organization guarantee? Do you have this information defined in a SLA? How many 9's do quote, i.e. 99.999% up time? What do you consider down time? Is maintenance recorded as down time?

We are trying to define some of these issues in our SLA. Any information on what you have done at your organization would be helpful.

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How do you define down time?

by RealGem In reply to How do you define down ti ...

Go with what you can handle. It would be better for you if you expressed the percentage excluding scheduled maintenance. Otherwise, staff will be tempted to delay routine maintenance in order to meet the SLA, which will only make things less reliable in the long run.

I would also take pains to specify when this level of availability is necessary. Your SLA could pertain to normal office hours, or it could cover the 6:00am to midnight period. Most people do not require 100% availability at3:00am, so why worry about meeting that target?

Bottom line is: find out what your clients really need instead of making sweeping promises.

It reminds me of people who quote statistics about how the server is only 40% utilized and so upgrades are not required. But, after inspection, it was discovered that the server was at 90% for many hours straight, then it went to zero for several hours, and then spent the rest of the time at 60%.

Make sure that your percentages are meaningful.

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How do you define down time?

by james.patrick In reply to How do you define down ti ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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How do you define down time?

by McKayTech In reply to How do you define down ti ...

I agree with answer 1 that, unless you have a fully redundant hot-swappable architecture, you need to separate out scheduled downtime from unscheduled. All systems require maintenance and it's unrealistic to think that a non-redundant system is going to operate 7x24 with no downtime.

Our organization is mostly standard business hours with a small 7x24 component and we're trying to recognize that in working towards an internal SLA between IS and the departments it supports.

Incidentally, I'm not a big fan of annual percentage targets. At least in our organization there is a significant difference in impact between a 12 hour continuous outage and 720 1-minute interruptions of service yet on an annual percentage basis, both would calculate out the same. So I prefer to define an SLA in terms of continuous duration of outage per unscheduled episode because I think that more accurately captures the business impact.

paul

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How do you define down time?

by james.patrick In reply to How do you define down ti ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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How do you define down time?

by cratem In reply to How do you define down ti ...

I have applications that need 100% uptime. One hour of downtime amounts to US$82,000.00. Please understand the downtime that software/hardware suppliers advertise make no sense to a serious user. It is up to what your needs are. If your mail server goes down for 2 hours at midnight who cares. If an Automated online process controller in a manufacturing enviroment goes down 1 min, it is money down the drain and the bosses will be going for your neck. Downtime in my company is "services not available when it is needed". It could be maintenance, virus attack, software bug or hardware failure still it is downtime.

My reccomendation is to talk to your users and find out how much they are going to lose if there is a loss of service by an ITSystem. That will give you in dollars the impact of the downtime. Then how much dollars can your users afford to lose without impacting business. This will give you the criticality of your system and the amount of acceptable downtime. If critical and user needs zero downtime than you have to do a costing and share with users how much it will cost them. After seeing the dollars they will come to a rational decission to how much they can afford and you will get the exact downtime the user allows you to have.

Please you don't decide your downtime. You might under commit and lose your job or overcommit and kill yourself. Let the user decide it and you tell them what it takes to do it. If agreed upon than you have to follow. Have fun.

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How do you define down time?

by james.patrick In reply to How do you define down ti ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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How do you define down time?

by Greg Roberts In reply to How do you define down ti ...

Another spin on SLA's is how do you actually calculate on outage. For Example, if you have an outage in the core network service center it will effect everyone on the network. If you have an outage out in an edge closet will only effect certain users while the rest of the users have no loss of services. It is usually not very cost effective to build redundancy out on the edge unless these users are extremely critical to the daily operations of your business.

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How do you define down time?

by james.patrick In reply to How do you define down ti ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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How do you define down time?

by Greg Roberts In reply to How do you define down ti ...

Another spin on SLA's is how do you actually calculate on outage. For Example, if you have an outage in the core network service center it will effect everyone on the network. If you have an outage out in an edge closet will only effect certain users while the rest of the users have no loss of services. It is usually not very cost effective to build redundancy out on the edge unless these users are extremely critical to the daily operations of your business.

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How do you define down time?

by james.patrick In reply to How do you define down ti ...

The question was auto-closed by TechRepublic

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