“Server maintenance” may not grab any exciting headlines, but staying on top of your servers will keep your business performing through changes in trends and disaster scenarios. Servers are usually the specialty of technical experts specialized in coding and software. However, entrepreneurs and those on the business and marketing side of a company may also benefit from learning about how servers work. Servers can age quickly, and left alone they become slower, less responsive and more vulnerable to threat agents. So what is server maintenance and how can you harness its advantages to avoid potential disasters?
What’s a Server?
A server is an independent computer that manages the distribution of data and services throughout a network of one or more other computers. With the power to manage and monitor all of the data and access permissions in the network, a central server computer basically runs the whole system. The term server maintenance refers simply to the cleaning up and optimizing of your CPU (Central Processing Unit) and related servers. To keep a server maintained, you must keep its software relatively up-to-date. Performing regular server maintenance can keep your network and associated properties running smoothly and with minimal downtime. A network has a public-facing side, so keeping the server clean and backed up will help your business perform consistently for users interacting with your app or products.
What Are the Benefits of Investing in Server Maintenance?
Server maintenance provides benefits mostly in terms of preventing potential threats. Whether those threats are hackers or system crashes, having a backup server or a redundant server you keep offline in case of emergency can help you stay up and running. The downside of not investing in server maintenance? If your server crashes, even for just a few hours, you could hurt your brand and lose a lot of money. Moreover, regular maintenance actually prolongs the life of your servers, reducing costs on potential fixes. Examples of Server Maintenance Best Practices
Perform Preventative Maintenance
Having a network admin to help you perform preventative maintenance can improve long term performance. At a regular pace the admin can review server output, identify real threats and verify the status of backup servers. They may not check all of the temperatures of each computer themselves, but they make sure that automatic intra-system monitoring is working properly.
Check Server Log Files
Traffic to your site or server greats lines of code in your log files. Having this data can be great, but a lot of the events in your log are just spam. Cleaning and creating hard disk space of old emails and spam logs can help your system run faster.
Review folder permissions
An admin can periodically check on the folder permissions of key files. Making sure you know who has access to what files and folders on your server prevents hackers from coming in with full free-reign over your classified documents.
Keep Up to Date Security and Software
Antivirus software continues to advance and update. If your system has holes, you can patch them before it’s too late with server maintenance. Installing security software patches and updating antivirus software on all network computers can help ensure your system is prepared for an emergency. Certain platforms release general updates often, and missing them can eventually lead to problems. If you need help remembering to update, you can set reminders for yourself or run an automatic update program. If you have a web application which runs a CMS, you will want to be especially sure to check for application patches. Make Sure You Have a Backup and That Your System is Adequately Redundant A redundant system has backup functions that mirror your main server’s functions. Having a redundant system allows your server to work faster and with less downtime. If your main server crashes, you still have a backup at your disposal. Performing regular comprehensive back-ups to ensure that vital data can be retrieved from storage in the event of a system failure The Bottom Line Server maintenance is a long-term process, not a quick and dirty one. Investing in a server maintenance partner can help reduce risks to your network. OST is a server maintenance expert that can help you keep your servers clean and your business driving forward.