Data Centre / Infrastructure / Backup / Monitoring FAQ

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Data Centre / Infrastructure / Backup / Monitoring FAQ

NOTE: THIS Article is currently considered unpublished / work in progress and the details may change

 

Location

What data centre providers do you use?

We use 3 Data Centre Providers:

equinix.com.au

vocusgroup.com.au

apdatacentres.com

 

Where are your servers located?

Across the 3 data centres, our servers are located at 3 unique locations in both Pyrmont and Alexandria in New South Wales, Australia.

 

Do your data centre's have ISO certification XXXX?

APDataCentres - No current ISO certifications however these are in the works as this is a relatively new data centre

Equinix SY1 & SY3 - Certification can be found here: https://www.equinix.com.au/services/data-centers-colocation/standards-compliance/

Vocus - ISO27001 and ISO9001 certified

 

Are your data centres manned?

Our primary data centre, APDataCentres, is manned 24/7 by technical staff at an onsite NOC. Our servers at Equinix and Vocus are unmanned, however these Data Centre's are a 5min drive from our head office where most of our technical staff work. Our out of hours technicians are mostly within a 30min drive of our data centre.

 

Do you have redundant and backup power in case of primary power failure?

Our data centres have multiple redundant power feeds, redundant UPS units and generators.

 

Do you have redundancy in case of failure from a data cable / transit provider?

Yes, all physical transit and peering links are multi-path taking different physical routes. We have peering with multiple international carriers and transit providers (including, but not limited to, NTT, Vocus, Nextgen, Amazon) to both improve connectivity and provide redundancy should one provider have an outage.

 

Security

What physical security is present at your data centre's to protect physical access to the server?

All data centres have security guards on site 24/7 and constant surveillance via security cameras both in the data centre, and around the building and general area.

Physical access to our servers is heavily restricted. For someone to access our servers, these 3 things are all required:

1) Biometric security verification

2) Valid security key card

3) Keys to access individual server racks

 

Do you have Firewalls, DDOS Protection or other methods to protect against digital attacks?

Depending on the product, we have firewalls and DDoS protection in place. Hardware firewalls are available with dedicated servers to protect them.

Software firewalls can be set up on dedicated and VPS servers to your specification. In the case of a managed service, the firewall configuration can be maintained and operating system updates can be performed periodically to ensure continued protection.

 

How is the docking area and entrances to the data centre protected?

Entrances to our data centre buildings are protected by 24/7 security staff and live monitoring, as well as requiring security card access into most sections of the building.

 

What are client's responsibilities when it comes to security?

Clients are responsible for all data, including websites, emails, software and passwords that they add/configure/upload onto our servers. This includes the maintenance of things like CMS updates, PHP upgrades, and password changes. On Shared Hosting and Managed servers, we are able to assist with removing malicious files and stopping other malicious activity on the server. However, it is up to the client to update the client side software and patch their website to stop any exploits from reoccurring.

 

Are servers encrypted?

By default, no data on the server is encrypted. Information in transit can easily be encrypted with a free SSL certificate, which we can assist in providing. However, if a client wishes to encrypt data on the server, they will have to take that up themselves.

 

Are backups encrypted?

By default, backups are not encrypted. The primary backup software we use (R1soft) does support AES-256 encryption, and we can enable this on request. Please note that this does mean that taking, accessing and restoring backups is slower.

 

How is the updating and handling of security vulnerabilities handled?

For Managed servers, we handle updating and patching of all security vulnerabilities and server software we provide. The client is responsible for managing and updating security/software for all software that they install or request assistance from us to help install.



Backups

What type of backups do you take?

For our Personal, Business, Premium, Reseller and Managed VPS products, we take a backup of each cPanel account in its entirety (whole server, for Managed VPS) every 6-7 hours. We keep the last 7 days worth of backups.

For Dedicated Servers and self managed VPS, backups are an optional extra. We offer both R1soft and SAMBA backup systems, and can configure access, backup frequency and other factors to your individual needs. Clients are also able to use the backup feature in WHM or their own backup applications. Please note that 3rd party backups, including WHM backups, may count against the server's billed bandwidth usage.

 

Are backups encrypted?

By default, backups are not encrypted. The primary backup software we use (R1soft) does support AES-256 encryption, and we can enable this on request. Please note that this does mean that taking, accessing and restoring backups is slower.

 

Are backups stored at a different physical location to the web servers?

Yes. Our 3 data centre locations are at 2 separate suburbs. With each server, we ensure that the physical server and the backup server are located separately (one in Pyrmont, the other in Alexandria)

 

Are backups full, incremental or differential?

The backups that we provide are incremental. The oldest backup will contain a full backup of the servers, while each earlier backup will contain backups of all changes / additions since the previous backup.

 

Do you offer long term / archive backups?

No. The backups we provide are short term / disaster recovery. For long term archiving and backups, we recommend a dual strategy of storing backups both in a secure online storage (such as Google Drive, Dropbox or AWS Glacier) and keeping a separate copy on a physical medium like a local computer or portable hard drive.

 

How can my backups be accessed?

For Web Hosting and Reseller services, backups can be accessed from the R1soft icon in cPanel.

For Managed VPS services, please contact our support team for backup restores as those backups are not accessible externally.

For other services (including Blaze, Self Managed and Control Panel VPS) backups are an optional extra. If purchased, we provide direct R1soft backup server logins.

 

Can I make and manage my own backups?

Yes. You can use the backup feature in WHM (for VPS/Blaze Services) or another third party backup service. Please note that if those backups are transferred offsite, that will count against the total billed bandwidth.

 

Staffing / Monitoring

How are your data centre's staffed?

We have technical staff on hand 24/7 which operate from a Network Operations Centre (NOC) at our primary data centre.

 

Do you have on site / on call technicians?

Yes. As well as 24/7 staffing, we have sys admins on call 24/7 who can do both remote work and drive to the DC if physical access is required.

 

How are servers monitored?

We have live monitoring of all our servers 24/7. Staff at our head office and APDataCentres NOC have live boards in front of them which show statistics and relevant monitoring information for all servers. Our internal communication tool contains a channel which monitors alerts and potential issues live. Sys admins are automatically SMS'd in case a critical issue is detected.

 

What aspects are monitored?

Temperature and environmental elements at all significant points throughout our data centres are monitored. For all servers, power and network connectivity is monitored 24/7. For Managed servers we implement a high level of monitoring which checks the status of all critical services (MySQL, Apache, SSH, etc), as well as high disk usage, CPU/RAM usage (for consistent lengths of time) and various other elements.

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