Make “the server has time out” error message a thing of the past

Make “the server has time out” error message a thing of the past

Murphy’s Law states that “the server has timed out” messages will most often be received by the users of a web site service under the following conditions:

1)      You have spent 30 minutes or more loading your shopping cart with items you want to buy and you will need to start again.

2)      You have hit the pay now button and the screen goes blank before the “server has timed out” message appears, have you been charged? Yes? No? maybe?

3)      When you need to recharge your prepaid mobile phone to make a vital call, the payment server goes down.

4)      When you need to send an important report to your boss who does not like to be kept waiting.

As you bang your head on your keyboard in frustration you will be able to take grim comfort from the fact that this situation is not caused by the web servers, or even necessarily by the applications that are being run on them. But rather the network administration has failed and work will need to be done to improve network performance.

Who are what is responsible for “the server has timed out” message

If the server has timed out message affects visitors to your site, the damage to your image can be practically incalculable in terms of loss of reputation and loss of business. Smart network management teams will not allow this to happen by deploying load balancers to spread the load and ensure traffic is directed to servers that are not at risk of overloading.

A hosting company in Bari Italy has taken a completely different approach, co-locating in the Netherlands, Italy and the UK and using Kemp Technologies Geographic Load Balancers they can redirect traffic to a completely different server cluster should, and it has happened, one their locations, normally Bari, be attacked by DoS offensives.

How load balancers can make a major difference

Load balancing is critically important for heavy traffic web servers and web sites. Load balancing is also a great solution to keep cost control over the requirement to keep the web servers up and running. Overloaded and slow running web servers will directly damage the business and associated profits. Well specified load balancers reduce the load on your servers and mean that you can achieve the highest level of efficiency with the lowest possible cost for your server requirements. Load balancers mean that servers that need to be taken out of service for essential maintenance to make repairs or upgrade the equipment to avoid future server failure can be taken out during working hours and save the staff cost for out of hours working.

Take away this message, here are the five key defenses that your load balancers will be able to protect you from the dreaded “the server has timed out” message.

1)      Incoming traffic is intercepted and shared among the servers to avoid overloading.

2)      Any failed server will be isolated and bypassed by the load balancers, thus ensuring that web traffic continues to run smoothly.

3)      Tasks are offloaded automatically, so users continue to navigate without being aware of the tasks that the load balancers are carrying out.

4)      The load balancers treat the multiple servers as a single entity and this allows greater productivity of simultaneous tasks.

5)       Response times are reduced thanks to the redundancy load balancers can build in by duplicating critical functions.

 

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