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On March 24, online encyclopedia giant Wikipedia went offline for more than 2 hours because of an overheating problem in one of their data centers. Even though they had had a DNS failover procedure, it was broken. The result: millions of users could not access Wikipedia for hours.
This situation is unfortunate for Wikipedia, but it would be even more unfortunate if you were an online business that lost 2 hours of critical revenue.
It is not enough to simply have a single back-up IP address and a manual switch to flip as a failover process.
Wikipedia's outage serves to illustrate the need for not just a failover process, but an integrated approach to monitoring and IP failover services that ensures your Web sites will always be up and running as expected.
Our tips for best practices are:
Of course we also recommend that you ensure that traffic to your Web site is being managed on a reliable DNS network that provides similar monitoring and failover services. With a professional managed DNS provider, generally you will get the benefits of a globally distributed Anycast network that seamlessly handles load dispersion and failover, with higher capacity than you could reasonably build in house.
Afilias Managed DNS offers SiteCertain as a Web Monitoring & IP failover service that provides you with DNS, monitoring and IP failover all from a single provider.