Tech

Network Downtime: Most Typical Causes and Solutions

Internet outages
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Internet outages might not happen all the time, but they are inevitable. No matter how reliable you think your ISP is, there are things even they can’t control. And depending upon your needs and the number of users, an internet outage can be chaotic. Most of the time, it is businesses that suffer most due to an internet disruption. But in recent times, many people work remotely from their homes. So, it is important to have a reliable residential connection as well.
 
So, in the case of Spectrum internet outages, the first thing you should do is call customer service. A lot of the time, they can troubleshoot your connection over the phone. But it might not always be that simple. So, it can be important to understand the most common causes of internet outages to outsmart them.

Table of Contents

 

Downtime Causes (and Their Solutions):

Your internet connection can have scheduled or sudden downtimes. Either way, it cannot be a pretty sight. You might be able to control some things, but others are uncontrollable variables. So, you should know what is causing the issue to plan for it better.
 

1: ISP Outages

One of the most common and unavoidable causes can be your ISP. Although, the root cause can still be different in each case. For instance, it can be a natural disaster such as a hurricane or a lightning strike. Moreover, fiber optic cable cuts can happen unexpectedly. So, core outages can take some time to repair depending upon the root cause of the problem. For satellite connections, even cloudy or rainy weather could be a problem. So, it might resolve on its own in better conditions. Or your ISP might need days to repair any hardware damages.
 
Solution
Core outages can sound like something you can’t control. While that may be true, you can still avoid disruptions by taking some precautions. If you are in a business setting, you should have two diverse internet operators. For instance, if one connection is FiOS, the other could be cable or satellite. As a result, even if one of them malfunctions, you can rely on the other.
 
For residential users, you should have a standby phone internet plan along with your WAN. So, the many connections should be logistically different as well. Because road closures, construction, or other mishaps could happen in similar areas. So, redundant connections might cost a little extra, but they can keep you up and running.
 

2: Network Congestion

This can be an issue for business and household settings alike. If too many people are on the same network, it can cause congestion or even outages. It can also depend upon what all the users are doing. So, if almost everyone is streaming videos or downloading something, the network quality could deteriorate. Moreover, some users might be getting better speeds than others on the same network. It can be a significant concern for lower frequency internet connections.
 
Solution
All you need to do is spread your internet users to different connections. For this purpose, you might need one or two ISPs and separate routers. Routers send and receive data through fixed network channels. So, if there is too much traffic, they can get over-crowded. As a result, the internet speeds can get affected for all users.
Moreover, most newer router models use the 5 GHz frequency, which is much faster. So, if your router is still on 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi frequency, you should update it ASAP.
 

3: Hardware Failure

No matter how much money you’re paying for it, hardware can be unpredictable. So, it is a real possibility that your hardware will fail you and cause an internet outage. Sometimes, the WAN cables or the router can act up. Other times, the router firmware might need an update. So, even a single point of error can disrupt the entire network. Hardware failure can be one of the most disruptive because it can affect all users on the network.
 
Solution
The idea of redundancy and diversification can help you with this as well. You can never know which router might act up, so it can be a good idea to double up. So, you should keep spare and pre-programmed hardware at the ready. Moreover, you should also try different router models to see which one lasts the most. You may not have control over your current hardware malfunctioning. But you can still prepare yourself for it.
 

Preparing for Future Outages

It is always good to be proactive in your approach to preparing for network downtimes. Instead of trusting an unreliable ISP, you should upgrade to a better connection. Moreover, an ISP with better support staff and after-sales services could be a better choice. You should also have a backup plan. Try to find a place nearby that offers free public Wi-Fi.

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