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Three Tips to Prevent User Frustration From Killing Your E-Business!

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I’ve just spent a frustrating couple of days with an e-marketing “service” which shall remain nameless. The sad fact is that they’ve been down for well over 24 hours now. When they come back up, I’m likely to cancel my account. So I’m writing this article to warn *you*, the e-marketer, about what *you* need to be doing to keep this from happening to you. User frustration kills e-businesses! These tips apply to you whether you run your own servers, or buy some kind of service from a vendor.

1. The prime directive: get *religious* about backups! Back up *everything* and back it up *regularly*. There are two kinds of data: that which has been backed up and that which has not yet been lost. If you buy a service, inquire how often they will back up your data.

2. RAID: RAID stands for Redundant Arrays of Independent Disks. With RAID, there are extra disks that hold copies of every bit. If a single disk drive goes down, the hardware *automatically* and *transparently* reconstructs the data, so if another disk drive goes down, the business is still in operation. Given how inexpensive RAID is, there’s no excuse for not having it. Again, if you buy a service, ask if the disks where your data will be stored are RAIDed. If they aren’t, go somewhere else — it’s worth the extra bucks.

3. Performance: After being down, the next most frustrating thing to a computer user is slowness. There’s a local TV station here in Portland with a really great web site — well, it would be a really great website if it didn’t take a long time to show up on a 28K connection. There’s no excuse for a slow web site. If you run your own servers, make sure your system administration people have performance engineering skills. If you buy a service, make sure they can keep up with the demands of your customers.

Matthew David has been developing Flash-based applications for more than six years. Examples of his work can be found at his web site http://www.matthewdavid.ws.
Matthew’s most recent contributions include content for Flash 5 Magic and Inside Dreamweaver 4. You can also see him popping up in many online magazines such as Sitepoint.com, Windowatch.com, and UDzone.com.

Three Tips to Prevent User Frustration From Killing Your E-Business!
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About Mathew David
Matthew David has been developing Flash-based applications for more than six years. Examples of his work can be found at his web site http://www.matthewdavid.ws. Matthew's most recent contributions include content for Flash 5 Magic and Inside Dreamweaver 4. You can also see him popping up in many online magazines such as Sitepoint.com, Windowatch.com, and UDzone.com. WebProNews Writer
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