The fabled five nines of Internet uptime is just that according to Steve Broadhead, director of testing lab Broadband Testing.
The penultimate panel debate at NetEvents Geneva on Friday was based around a recent study of downtime across European and US sites which revealed significant downtime for most sites.
Broadhead said that sites such as those operated by the FTSE top 20 showed 43 percent of companies with significant downtime. The study showed that 40 percent of UK PLC sites failed to achieve industry targets of uptime. The best effort goes to airline sites which had 10 percent downtime according to the research.
Where is the failure occurring? There are two bottlenecks – just in front of the servers and out at the edge of the network, according to Broadhead.
Paul Di Leo, boss of Zeus, speaking on the panel, said that his company provides a new form of load balancing that should help the kind of endemic downtime described by Broadhead.
At the end of the day, organisations aren't spending enough or on the right kind of technologies to maintain what is effectively their online store-front, said Di Leo.
"It basically because some companies do no take there web services seriously enough. The reason they fail is that they do not put any resiliency in them. E-retail is a classic – the retailers spend a fortune in the high-street store but when it comes to their e-site – consumers can't get in etc," said Di Leo. "Companies should spend the same amount percentage wise on their site as they do in the high-street. There is no reason that a 404 site should exist anymore. It is about the importance of the website to the business."