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Monday, December 5, 2011

How to avoid hosting problems


Being aware of the problems is the first step in avoiding them. There are other things we can do to keep hosting issues from becoming last minute disasters.

Get the technical contacts to talk to each other directly. If we can get the technical contact at the client to discuss these issues with our system administrator early on in the process, we can usually discover and address all these issues before they become problems. If the two technical contacts work together during the DNS modification stage, errors are less likely to occur. Our agency partners can be helpful in this regard by simply making inquiry into who the technical contact is and making the proper introductions.

Never schedule a website launch on a Friday. Because there are so many technical details (and risk of error) we do not plan "go live" dates for the end of the week. This is because, if there are going to be problems when DNS modifications are made, we want to be here to address them right away. Otherwise an entire weekend can go by before we can fix a problem. Scheduling a launch for a Monday or Tuesday is ideal.

Lookup the domain name and confirm the accuracy of the administrative contact information before beginning the project. By going to www.netsol.com and clicking on the "whois" link in the upper right hand corner of the page you can look up a current DNS record. This information will tell you who is hosting the domain name as well as listing the administrative contact. Check with your client that the email address listed for the administrative contact is still active. It can also be helpful if the client still has their account number and password from when they registered their domain. If they do not, you may want to have them request this information from the company that's hosting their domain.

Ask about email. If your client hosts their own email there should be few problems. If they are using their current web hosting for email, we will need to look into other options. If they do not yet have email through their domain we have several possible avenues to explore. In general it is much easier to establish something new, than changing something that is currently being used.

Conclusion

With proper attention, and by following these guidelines we can make the hosting aspect of web development as smooth as possible for your clients. Having this information available and being proactive about asking these questions will demonstrate to your client that you are on top of the project and looking out for their best interest. As always we are available to help you answer these questions to keep projects running smoothly.

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