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Eaton: 100% uptime 'not always essential'

Many companies accepting loss of availability in favour of simplicity, says Eaton product manager

Eaton: 100% uptime 'not always essential'
Valjakka quoted social network Pinterest, which advises not to 'freak' about losing a little data

Despite many industry figureheads asserting the need for 100% uptime, Eaton's Tatu Valjakka has called into question whether the investment required for this is really worth it.

While acknowledging that some organisations, such as banks or financial institutions, really do require as close to 100% uptime as possible, Valjakka - a product manager in Eaton's Power Quality Division - said that many organisations could probably handle small outages from time to time.

"This is a quote from Pinterest: They say, don't freak about losing a little data. A couple of hours of data here and there, nobody cares," he told ITP.net.

"The mindset is like with Facebook. If you lose one update, is that such a big deal? It gets a heartbroken teenager, but that's it."

Valjakka said that organisations such as Pinterest and Facebook prioritise time to market over uptime. The companies, he explained, accept loss of availability to some extent in favour of simplifying applications.

"Of course, they can't be out for days in a row, or they are out of business, but a couple of minutes, or a couple of hours, is manageable," he said.

According to Valjakka, the reasoning behind this is simple - cost. This is particularly true when it comes to utilising cloud services, he said. He explained that service-level agreements (SLAs) from cloud providers are expensive when 100% uptime is required, so many organisations have called into question whether they need to shell out for it.

"They've come to notice that availability, the SLA, comes with a cost. So they've realised that maybe there's something behind it," he said.

"A lot of people have starting wondering, does the IT have to be available 24-7-365? Is it really worth the cost?"

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