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Website monitoring from foreign locations

Difficulty: Beginner

Overview

Conetix is an Australian based and focussed hosting company, who maintains a high speed network for all Australian based customers. This network ensures that there are multiple redundancy points as well as ensuring the lowest possible latency for Australian based customers.

However, at times there are connectivity issues to overseas locations due to external faults. If you use foreign based monitoring services (eg, Pingdom or Uptime Robot) to check your website and/or server, you may receive errors such as website timeouts or a fault stating your server isn't responding. In these instances, this isn't the fault of Conetix and therefore the alerts are a false positive. 

This is because the monitoring service doesn't have any presence in Australia (or not available on the free services) and therefore don't run any checks from Australian based connections. In contrast, Conetix maintains complete network checks from nearly 20 locations around the world every minute (on top of the thousands of other locally monitored systems) to give us a global picture of all network faults.  

For example, when there were a number of faults reported during May 2018, there was some packet loss and higher latency from USA based locations but no loss from Australian nor South-East Asian based customers. Here's what our reporting showed for this period:

Overseas cable fault - Packet loss from Australia

As the graph displays, a fault occurred at 19:15 and caused either packet loss or increased latency for a number of overseas locations, while connectivity from places such as Sydney and Taipei (bottom two lines) were still available 100% of the time. For this particular fault, the cable from Australia to Singapore had been cut and reported in the news here: https://www.itnews.com.au/news/perth-singapore-subsea-cable-is-down-again-490773

Because Australia has limited connectivity which travels via undersea cables to the rest of the world, any fault with these services can cause either intermittent packet loss or complete connectivity loss. Generally these faults are short lived (5-10 minutes) as the provider updates their network routes to fail over to a secondary service but major faults can take 1-2 hours to rectify.  Meanwhile, for your Australian based customers there is no loss of service

In order to properly monitor your site, we highly recommend the use of a service which also has Australian based checks (sometimes referred to as "points of presence") so that you don't receive the false positives. Here are three services which do include Australian based site checks:

If you have any doubt as to where the fault is, please don't hesitate to contact our support team who can help clarify if you have received a false positive or not.

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