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How do you handle system maintenance during a crisis?

You know it's going to happen so you need to be prepared. How do you do it?
How do you handle system maintenance during a crisis?
Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

How do you handle system maintenance during a crisis?

56 votes tallied
We have a fully-developed plan and disaster recovery strategy
17 votes
We employ extreme service redundancy to ensure 100% uptime
3 votes
We employ geographically diverse cloud technologies
3 votes
We have a written plan and a verbal strategy that everyone understands
5 votes
We use rotating on-call for sysadmins
7 votes
We have backups and crossed fingers
17 votes
We have little to no crisis maintenance or crisis support strategy
4 votes

Back in the mid-1990s, a particular vendor's training classes that I was taking always began the same way: "It's not IF a failure is going to happen, it's WHEN." It's annoying to have someone repeat this mantra, no matter how true it is, at the beginning of every class. It develops an unhealthy paranoia about hardware, software, and careless sysadmins. It also helps sell more classes but that's another story.

Yes, failures are going to happen. Yes, they're terrible. Yes, you'll be up all night dealing with the incident, the questions, and the irritating "advice" that comes with trying to troubleshoot a problem while on the phone with two dozen people—most of whom haven't a clue of what's really going on. That also is another story. This particular story focuses on how you handle support during a crisis.

A crisis can be anything from an unfortunately timed vacation to a weather-induced power outage to a global pandemic. You need to be prepared for a crisis because it's not if a failure is going to happen, it's when. So, the question is, "How do you handle system maintenance during a crisis?"

Having "been there and done that," I feel infinitely qualified to offer up this poll to find out how others handle crises. I'd like your feedback to help better understand what the current trends are.

Topics:   Linux   Linux administration   Poll  
Author’s photo

Ken Hess

Ken has used Red Hat Linux since 1996 and has written ebooks, whitepapers, actual books, thousands of exam review questions, and hundreds of articles on open source and other topics. Ken also has 20+ years of experience as an enterprise sysadmin with Unix, Linux, Windows, and Virtualization. More about me

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