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Post-Mortem Analysis: Investigating a Website Outage

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Post-Mortem Analysis: Investigating a Website Outage

Mehmet Erturk's photo
Mehmet Erturk
·Jan 27, 2023·

3 min read

Post-mortem analysis, also known as a post-project review or post-implementation review, is a process used to evaluate the success or failure of a project after it has been completed. It involves a thorough examination of all aspects of the project, including goals, planning, execution, and results. The goal of a post-mortem analysis is to identify what worked well and what didn't and to use this information to improve future projects. In the context of a Digital project, post-mortem analysis is a process of evaluating the digital project after its completion in terms of its goals, objectives, deliverables, and overall success. The analysis is conducted to identify areas for improvement and to implement best practices to enhance future digital projects.

Example hypothetic incident

Incident Summary:

On January 15, 2023, a website outage occurred affecting a large number of users on a popular e-commerce platform. The website, which is a popular e-commerce platform, experienced a significant increase in traffic and sales. The incident was first reported at 2:30 PM and it was determined that the issue was caused by a server overload due to a sudden spike in traffic. Our team immediately launched an investigation to identify the root cause of the problem and to implement a solution as quickly as possible.

What We Have Done:

  1. January 15, 2023, at 2:30 PM: The incident was first reported to our team and an investigation was launched.

  2. January 15, 2023, at 3:00 PM: Our team identified that the issue was caused by a server overload due to a sudden spike in traffic.

  3. January 15, 2023, at 4:00 PM: We implemented a short-term solution by adding more servers to handle the increased traffic.

  4. January 15, 2023, at 5:00 PM: We monitored the website's performance and confirmed that the website was back to normal.

Short-Term Execution (Quick Solution):

To alleviate the immediate impact of the website outage, we added more servers to handle the increased traffic. This solution allowed us to quickly restore the website's functionality and resolve the issue.

How We Will Be Sure About This or Similar Incident Not Going to Happen Again:

To prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future, we will take several steps, including:

  1. Monitoring the website's traffic levels and implementing preventative measures when traffic levels are high.

  2. Conducting regular maintenance and updates to ensure that the website's infrastructure is able to handle high levels of traffic.

  3. Reviewing and updating our incident response plan to ensure that we can quickly and effectively respond to future incidents.

  4. Conduct load testing to simulate high traffic and identify and address any potential bottlenecks in the system.

  5. Investing in a more robust and scalable infrastructure to handle high traffic.

Execution Planning:

  1. Monitor website traffic levels regularly

  2. Conduct regular maintenance and updates

  3. Review and update the incident response plan

  4. Conduct load testing

  5. Invest in more robust and scalable infrastructure

Next Steps: Our team will continue to monitor the website's performance and will take any necessary actions to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future. We will also review the incident and our response to it to identify any areas for improvement. Furthermore, we will conduct a full post-mortem analysis to identify the root cause of the problem and to implement a long-term solution that will prevent similar incidents from happening in the future. Additionally, we will communicate the steps we have taken to ensure the incident does not happen again to our customers and stakeholders, to regain their trust and confidence

 
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