June 18, 2024 #1 Local News, Information and Event Source for the Century City/Westwood areas.

Tech Report: Redundancy of service always a requirement

Microsoft Office 365By John Agsalud

Users of Microsoft’s Office 365 email service, commonly known as Exchange Online, experienced an outage of about three hours a couple of weeks ago. Most of these users had their business processes completely short-circuited due to ever-increasing reliance on email. What, then, should businesses and government agencies do to alleviate issues when (not if) something like this happens again?

First, organizations need to identify the critical components of their business infrastructure and budget for appropriate fallback and/or redundant solutions. In an ironic twist, the recent outage provides an excellent measure of a business unit’s dependence on email. After all, the issue occurred during prime-time working hours (reports started coming in as early as 2:30 pm local time, and Microsoft didn’t call the issue resolved until after 5 pm).

How much did that outage really cost you, both tangibly and intangibly? This is probably a good time to assess that, now that some time has passed to allow emotions to cool.

Wait a minute, you say, didn’t I go with cloud-based email so I wouldn’t have to worry about a fallback plan? Isn’t that supposed to be the provider’s problem? Well, yes, but unfortunately, no cloud-based solution is perfect, because humans are always involved. In fact, in this case, Microsoft blamed human error (implementing a software update that had not been fully tested) as the root cause of the outage.

So what kind of redundancy can you implement for cloud-based email? In many cases a handful of email accounts from an alternate provider would help. If your primary provider is Microsoft, for example, sign up for Google accounts. While not ideal, emergency business processes certainly can be engineered to help you get through an outage. Test your processes and figure out what you need and how to use them in case of emergency.

What about your Internet connection? While not relevant to this particular outage, we see many organizations that have only a single connection to the cloud. With an increasing dependence on cloud-based solutions, more bandwidth is needed, and a backup connection is also becoming more and more common.

When acquiring a backup Internet connection, be sure to inquire about something known as path diversity. Somewhat unknown to many, Provider A often just resells circuits that are actually delivered by Provider B. Or, Provider A uses the same wires as Provider B. Path diversity also takes into account the conduits and routes a circuit might take. Even if different wires are used, if they end up in the same underground conduit or on the same telephone pole, one fender bender could take down multiple providers.

Finally, users of Office 365 should be aware of their Service Level Agreement (SLA). The standard SLA for Office 365 says that if the service is not up for 99.9 percent of any one month, users are entitled to a 25 percent credit of their monthly fee. This translates into about 45 minutes for a 31-day month, which clearly and by Microsoft’s own admission was exceeded. So be sure to file a claim for your credit if you think it’s worth it.

in News
Related Posts

Toddler Fatally Struck by Relative’s RV at Dockweiler State Beach

June 17, 2024

June 17, 2024

2-Year-Old Child Lancaster Identified as Victim in Tragic Accident A toddler died Saturday after being struck by a relative who...

Texas Man Sentenced to 33 Months for Threatening U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters

June 17, 2024

June 17, 2024

Gaherty Targeted the Congresswoman With Racist and Violent Threats  A Texas man was sentenced to 33 months in federal prison...

LAUSD Considers Cell Phone Ban for Students During School Day

June 17, 2024

June 17, 2024

Some Parents Object Citing Safety Issues During a Crisis The Los Angeles Unified School District is considering a policy that...

Brentwood Beat: Giving Some Brentwood Thanks on the Fourth of July

June 17, 2024

June 17, 2024

As July 4th approaches, we should be thankful to live in America.   Sure, our country has its issues, but immigrants...

West Hollywood Resident Robbed at Gunpoint Near Sheriff’s Station After Pride

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Victim Recounts Harrowing Early Morning Encounter in Rainbow District A West Hollywood resident and his friends were heading home in...

Michelin-Starred Chef James Kent Passes Away, Saga Hospitality Group Announces

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Chef Kent Is Remembered for His Culinary Excellence and Charity Work The Saga Hospitality Group announced the death of Michelin-starred...

Film Review: Longlegs

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

LONGLEGS is pure poetic eldritch terror. From the very beginning, director Osgood Perkins uses the actors’ performances, cinematography, and even...

Two Men Arrested After Injuring Elderly Woman in Road Rage Incident at LAX

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Violent Altercation Hospitalized Elderly Passenger  Los Angeles Police Department detectives from the Pacific-LAX Division have arrested two men involved in...

Judge Rules in Favor of Tenants in Historic West Los Angeles Eviction Case

June 16, 2024

June 16, 2024

Landlord’s Eviction Plan Under Ellis Act Rejected, Tenants Can Stay After a lengthy legal battle that spanned over a year,...

Marina del Rey Sportfishing: A Great Day on the Water

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Fishing is a pastime like no other. You can experience the nostalgia of that pastime in real time at Marina...

Culver City Police Collaborate with VA and LASD to Aid Unhoused Veteran

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Joint Efforts Lead to Successful Assistance for a Veteran in Need The Culver City Police Mental Evaluation Team collaborated with...

University of Miami President to Replace Gene Block Amid Controversy

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Julio Frenk Named New UCLA Chancellor at UC Regents Meeting The search for a new chancellor at UCLA is over....

West Hollywood Kicks Off WeHo Pride Arts Festival This Weekend

June 14, 2024

June 14, 2024

Celebration Features Diverse LGBTQ+ Events From June 14-16 Each year, the City of West Hollywood celebrates the artistic contributions of...

30th Anniversary of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman Murders Commemorated with Virtual Vigil

June 13, 2024

June 13, 2024

Family Honors Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman in Virtual Candlelight Vigil This week marks the 30th anniversary of the...

Los Angeles County Launches Historic LGBTQ+ Commission with Inaugural Meeting

June 12, 2024

June 12, 2024

Supervisor Hilda Solis Leads Ceremony Marking Milestone for LGBTQ+ Advocacy Los Angeles County Supervisors convened Tuesday to inaugurate the county’s...