Highly available services: The non-techies introduction

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Photo by Charlie Firth on Unsplash

A computer services world

We cannot conceive today’s computing without the so-called services.

What is availability?

Before we can answer what is high availability, we must know what availability is.

Availability time

A standard metric for high availability is a measure of how long the service has been available over a specific period, and habitually represented as a percentage.

What is high availability?

We can define high availability as a process to achieve the least unavailable service time, even if some of the underlying components are failing.

  • Networking: Multiple providers
  • Servers and its components, duplicated
  • Power supplies: Redundant, connected to different power sources from different power origins
  • Software: Multiple instances of each service and its dependencies running

Why high availability?

We need high availability to ensure the services are performing most of the time.

Moving forward

Now we understood what is high availability, be prepared to achieve it. Next articles focus on ways to use and configure “floating” (virtual) IP addresses, load balancers like HAProxy, standard services redundancy and technologies like containers and container orchestrators, amid others.

CEO, Co-Founder and SRE at LoadFront. Husband. Father. Entrepreneur. Remote work advocate. And sometimes I write about how to do things with computers.

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