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Troubleshooting Issues

One of the most important aspects of having a website is maintaining consistency. Mark Zuckerberg understood this when his first mantra with Facebook was to maintain 100% uptime. We obviously never want to have downtime, but it does happen. Most frequently this is a result of server and hosting issues, but when it’s not, there are means and methods that should be followed to get your site up with all components working correctly. The two most common circumstances that can bring a website offline:

Server Issues

Good luck. The best you can do here is wait it out. Hosting sites like GoDaddy claim a better than 99% uptime, but there’s still the 0.5%. It is important to do periodic updates and backups of your code, and to check your site thoroughly after server updates. Settings and configurations can change on the server’s-end that may affect your site.

Code Changes

Frequently, when websites are updated, issues arise. Websites are comprised of many different components, widgets, and plugins that all have to communicate freely with each other, or at the minimum, keep from disrupting other processes. When updating code, it is important to always maintain a ‘ground level’ build. This is a copy of the website with 100% operability. This build can always be reverted to to clear the slate in the event that an impasse is reached.

With the baseline established, the key point to troubleshooting is to only change one thing at a time. Changing multiple settings and then testing leaves nothing conclusive. The code hierarchy should be examined in a specific order as well; HTML for page structure first, then CSS for style and layout, and finally javascript / PHP, or other code that relates to actions.

By breaking a big issue down into smaller pieces that can be examined separately, the chance of figuring out the problem with minimal time and coding impact can be greatly increased.

Keep up with us at Ink and Link Creative with more useful articles to help you navigate the net;

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