Monitor availability of your website

Its important to know if your website is running properly and if not then consider to switch service providers. Switching providers is quite simple and nothing to be feared of. From my experience it is uproductive to discuss performance problems with your current service provider. They are not interested in doing anything as long as you pay. Don’t be afraid to move.

First we need to collect some performance data. We are most interested in average response time and uptime. It can be done for free, there are several free monitoring services. One and most popular of these free monitoring services is Uptime Robot. Lets take a closer look.

Uptime Robot

Uptime robot allows you to do web site monitoring. It monitors not just availability of www site but also draws history of response time. That is very nice if you want to compare several hosting services before moving your production site in. You can monitor not just http(s) response code but also keyword appearing (or not) on the page.

This is important because some types of failures may not be detected simply by looking at HTTP Response code. Server may return page with 200 OK status but some parts of page might be missing. Uptime robot can also do ping monitoring for detecting possible network problems and port monitoring for applications not using HTTP protocol.

Port monitor will detect only if port is open which means that service on that port is running but it might not work properly. If your database is down then service depending on it will run but do not return anything other then errors. These errors will not be detected by mere port monitoring.

They have Free Plan (50 monitors, 5 minute intervals). That is a lot what you got in free plan! If you want 1 minute monitoring interval you need to upgrade to Pro plan $8 monthly. Pro plans also has ability to do voice calls or SMS notifications if your service goes dark.

You can browse through nice looking reports and even make availibility report of some selected monitors public. Lets take a look at monitor.