DNS
DNS DNS - domain name system, a system for locating a web site.

DNS - domain name system. This system helps to find a real server by virtual site name. The system is realized by the hierarchy of DNS servers, each of them holds information about specific domains and may delegate such role to lower stage servers. Let's take, for example, site www.host-tracker.com. The upper domain is .com, so the request is made to the server, which is responsible for all .com sites. It knows where each site is located, or at least, where is another server, which knows for sure. If you get "Server not found" message, that means no record exists on the DNS server for the site name you've requested.

Each time you enter an address into the browser - a DNS request is made, in order to find where the site is located. To make this process faster, DNS data can be saved into a cache. If you own a site and decide to change its name for some reason, or if you have just created the new one - you should keep in mind that DNS cache needs some time to be updated globally. Usually, it happens within couple of hours, but it can take up to 48 hours. That's why sometimes a newly-hosted site can not be visible for some time.

  • CM.Glossary.WebsiteMonitoring
  • CM.Glossary.Uptime
  • CM.Glossary.WebHosting
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"Your monitoring service is the best to know exactly what is going on in our website. Thank you very much for your time and very good service."
- F.
Escalations. Typical scenarios

As many people know, HostTracker is a sites efficiency monitoring system. One of its main functions is to notify the user of any problems promptly. The efficiency of the notifications and the acceptable level of “detalization” are important. If you send alerts at each “sneeze”, the person will not find the important information in this flow...

I was woken up by an SMS at three a.m.
My site dropped for three minutes, and it raised back itself.
But I could not go back to sleep.
True-life story

As many people know, HostTracker is a sites efficiency monitoring system. One of its main functions is to notify the user of any problems promptly. The efficiency of the notifications and the acceptable level of “detalization” are important. If you send alerts at each “sneeze”, the person will not find the important information in this flow.

We have provided several mechanisms that will help the right people to get the necessary notifications:

  • Separation of the notifications into several groups according to their criticality;
  • No notifications at short-term failures;
  • Report the problem to the manager promptly;
  • Report a prolonged failure to the administration;
  • Use the free alerts first – email, gtalk, and then the paid ones – SMS or phone call;
  • At the contact level – set the working time when this contact should receive the alerts.

 

There are three types of notifications:

 

  • The website has “dropped”;
  • The website is still “down”;
  • The website “rose

 

The “dropped” and “rose” are clear. The notifications “site is still down” are sent at each test fail, but only at the confirmed drops. The fails confirmation algorithm was described in the article “False alerts exclusion”

 

For each site-contact pair you may enable or disable the appropriate notification type. The setting can be located in the contact properties as well as in the general “matrix” at the “Notifications subscribtion” page.

Escalation and the notifications detalization level.

Suppose, two people are responsible for the site:

  • Administrator
  • Manager

 

Let's try to implement the following scenario:

 

  • In the event of a “drop” we want to send an email message to the administrator immediately;
  • If the site does not rise within 15 minutes, we send an SMS to the administrator;
  • If the site is “down” for more than an hour, then we send an SMS to the manager.

 

Adding the contacts for the users. While adding, draw attention to the “Notification Delay” window.

 

We appear to have three contacts with the following delays:

  • Administrator (email) – no delay;
  • Administrator (SMS) – 15 minutes delay;
  • Manager (SMS) – 1 hour delay.

 

According to this configuration the administrator will get all the failures notifications to the email, but SMS notifications will be sent only if the site is “down” for more then 15 minutes. The manager will receive only SMS about major failures lasting more than an hour. Setting up the contact working schedule

 

Suppose that one administrator can not cope, and we hired one more administrator. The first one works during the first half of the week, the second one works during the second half. Accordingly the notifications should be sent to the administrator “on duty” To set this scenario the window “Set the contact working hours” is used in the contact settings.

In this case the first administrator will receive the SMS notifications from Monday to Thursday inclusive. Additionally, you may divide the notification for different employees according to the time of day, for example appointing day and night administrators.

Conclusions: with the help of relatively simple mechanisms we may cover most notifications fine-tune user scenarios.

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Task statistic
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Start date Uptime Downtime
2016-07-01 100 %  
2016-06-01 100 %  
2016-05-01 100 %  
2016-04-01 100 %  
2016-03-01 100 %  
2016-02-01 100 %  
2016-01-01 100 %  
2015-12-01 100 %  
2015-11-01 100 %  
2015-10-01 100 %  
2015-09-01 100 %  
2015-08-01 100 %  
2015-07-01 100 %  
2015-06-01 100 %  
2015-05-01 100 %  
2015-04-01 99.93 % 30 min(s) 43 sec(s) 0.00:30:43
2015-03-01 100 %  
2015-02-01 100 %  
2015-01-01 100 %  
2014-12-01 100 %  
2014-11-01 100 %  
2014-10-01 100 %  
2014-09-01 100 %  
2014-08-01 100 %  
2014-07-01 100 %  
2014-06-01 100 %  
2014-05-01 100 %  
2014-04-01 100 %  
2014-03-01 100 %  
2014-02-01 99.84 % 1 hour(s) 1 min(s) 0.01:01:34
2014-01-01 100 % 11 sec(s) 0.00:00:11
2013-12-01 99.63 % 2 hour(s) 22 min(s) 0.02:22:30
2013-11-01 99.99 % 2 min(s) 42 sec(s) 0.00:02:42
2013-10-01 100 %  
2013-09-01 100 % 1 min(s) 37 sec(s) 0.00:01:37
2013-08-01 99.02 % 7 hour(s) 37 sec(s) 0.07:00:37
2013-07-01 99.83 % 1 hour(s) 9 min(s) 0.01:09:52
2013-06-01 99.99 % 2 min(s) 19 sec(s) 0.00:02:19
2013-05-01 100 %  
2013-04-01 99.7 % 2 hour(s) 3 min(s) 0.02:03:30
2013-03-01 99.93 % 31 min(s) 37 sec(s) 0.00:31:37
2013-02-01 99.45 % 3 hour(s) 2 min(s) 0.03:02:00
2013-01-01 99.98 % 6 min(s) 17 sec(s) 0.00:06:17
2012-12-01 99.84 % 1 hour(s) 4 min(s) 0.01:04:51
2012-11-01 100 %  
2012-10-01 100 %  
2012-09-01 100 % 57 sec(s) 0.00:00:57
2012-08-01 100 %  
2012-07-01 100 %  
2012-06-01 100 %  
2012-05-01 100 %  
2012-04-01 99.91 % 35 min(s) 53 sec(s) 0.00:35:53
2012-03-01 100 %  
2012-02-01 100 % 26 sec(s) 0.00:00:26
2012-01-01 100 %  
2011-12-01 100 %  
2011-11-01 99.91 % 35 min(s) 30 sec(s) 0.00:35:30
2011-10-01 100 %  
2011-09-01 100 % 1 min(s) 23 sec(s) 0.00:01:23
2011-08-01 100 %  
2011-07-01 100 % 49 sec(s) 0.00:00:49
2011-06-01 100 %  
2011-05-01 100 % 42 sec(s) 0.00:00:42
2011-04-01 100 % 1 min(s) 4 sec(s) 0.00:01:04
2011-03-01 99.99 % 4 min(s) 42 sec(s) 0.00:04:42
2011-02-01 100 %  
2011-01-01 100 % 37 sec(s) 0.00:00:37
2010-12-01 100 %  
2010-11-01 100 %  
2010-10-01 100 %  
2010-09-01 99.65 % 2 hour(s) 22 min(s) 0.02:22:30
2010-08-01 100 %  
2010-07-01 100 % 46 sec(s) 0.00:00:46
2010-06-01 100 % 44 sec(s) 0.00:00:44
2010-05-01 99.99 % 2 min(s) 39 sec(s) 0.00:02:39
2010-04-01 100 %  
2010-03-01 100 %  
2010-02-01 100 %  
2010-01-01 100 % 1 min(s) 27 sec(s) 0.00:01:27
2009-12-01 100 % 1 min(s) 10 sec(s) 0.00:01:10
2009-11-01 100 % 39 sec(s) 0.00:00:39
2009-10-01 100 %  
2009-09-01 100 %  
2009-08-01 99.55 % 3 hour(s) 6 min(s) 0.03:06:44
2009-07-01 99.83 % 1 hour(s) 8 min(s) 0.01:08:16
2009-06-01 99.99 % 3 min(s) 10 sec(s) 0.00:03:10
2009-05-01 99.99 % 5 min(s) 10 sec(s) 0.00:05:10
2009-04-01 99.99 % 2 min(s) 30 sec(s) 0.00:02:30
2009-03-01 100 %  
2009-02-01 99.25 % 4 hour(s) 55 min(s) 0.04:55:51
2009-01-01 100 %  
2008-12-01 100 %  
2008-11-01 100 %  
2008-10-01 99.99 % 3 min(s) 28 sec(s) 0.00:03:28
2008-09-01 100 % 1 min(s) 30 sec(s) 0.00:01:30
2008-08-01 99.77 % 1 hour(s) 40 min(s) 0.01:40:23
2008-07-01 100 %  
2008-06-01 100 %  
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