Web Host Uptime

Uptime refers to the length of time that a web server has remained connected to the internet without requiring a restart. Reliable web servers can go weeks or months before needing a reboot.

When referred to by a web host, uptime will be given as a percentage of a web server’s total uptime in a given period. 99.5% uptime is average for a low-end web host; this means that in one year, the server would be offline for 44 hours. Looked at another way, in an average day, the web server would be down for 7 minutes. For most websites this is not a problem, but for those demanding high levels of accessibility, a guaranteed uptime of 99.9% of greater is desirable. This would allow for 100 seconds of downtime in any given day.

Many web hosts offer uptime guarantees that refund a portion of a customer’s bill if their uptime falls below a certain point. In most cases the web host will define an allowable downtime period, such as 4 hours, after which discounts are applied to the successive month’s bill.

A commitment such as this can decide between two similar web hosts because it provides reassurance to the customer that a web host is confident in their server redundancy and emergency systems.