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Prepare for planned and unplanned downtime


Downtime planning

While unplanned outages defy advance preparation, schedule planned downtime in advance to minimize user impact. Trovato stressed the importance of establishing regular maintenance windows during low-impact time periods — the second weekend of every month, for example.

“As much as possible, wait for those maintenance windows to implement changes that require downtime,” he said. “This enables the business to anticipate the outage and implement appropriate workarounds, if needed.”

For systems that provide 24/7 services, Trovato recommends high-availability infrastructures that enable one instance to be down for maintenance while the other continues to operate.

It is nearly impossible to anticipate every possible downtime incident, which makes it difficult to mitigate individual risks. Instead, strive to make critical systems as resilient as possible overall.

“For example, when network connectivity to branch offices is absolutely critical, organizations will typically implement redundant network paths, and even redundant providers, to build-in resilience, regardless of what might cause one path to fail,” Trovato said.


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