the cloud, downtime, and my app

2008-08-06 @ 11:43#

over the last month or so i've been playing with Microsoft SSDS and having a great time. and in the process i've learned about server downtime in a new way.

now that i'm building apps that depend on a third party service for their data, i have to contend with occasional scheduled downtime. The SSDS team is good about warning folks ahead of time when a maintenance window is coming. it's a beta and things like this are bound to happen. and since my apps are built on this beta, most of my users are also getting the same notices. but a couple of my apps are open to the public (i handle the data-services on the back-end) and they depend on *me* to alert them to any scheduled downtime. it's not a big deal (again, it's all beta- and demo-ware), but i want to keep visitors/users informed.

i've added a section in my web apps that i can use to post alerts to users. this allows me to simply update the contents of a physical file on disk and then all users see the text when they visit the site. it's a simple thing. but something i need to keep track of over time.

next i need to look into writing my apps to make sure they do not fail catastrophically when there is an *unscheduled* outage.