Today, November 3rd 2016, our US Region 2 Server began experiencing issues at around 10:15am. This resulted in latency and, in a few cases, loss of connectivity for some customers. Our network team was able to isolate the issue and reestablish connectivity within the hour and we are back up and running on all servers without issue.
Server uptime and other information for ERPLY can be seen at status.erply.com.
Due to our temporary outage today and the DDoS Attack last month, it’s important to discuss back ups for any necessary functionality for your business. There’s a saying as old as the internet that goes “There’s no such thing as 100% uptime.” This has been proven through Cayan’s downtime and now ours at ERPLY. Last month we had an 100%, but today we were brought down to 99.90%.
Credit Card Backups
For the occasional credit card merchant or internet outages, it’s helpful to have a back up system ready. For internet outages, there are card readers than can be plugged directly into a phone line and avoid your internet hiccups altogether. These can be set up on your existing merchant or an alternate provider. Check with your merchant processor to see what would work best with your setup.
There is also a completely offline Credit Card Carbon Copy Machines known in the industry as “Knuckle Busters.” These aren’t connected to the internet at all so the sale won’t be added to the merchant automatically. These make a literal carbon copy of the card to save and import later once a connection can be reestablished.
For the times when there is an internet outage, it’s always good to have an alternative. If you talk to your internet service provider (ISP) or cell phone company, they may be able to provide you with a 4G backup system. This system will connect to the cell network rather than your ISP’s internet, bypassing any outages they may have.
Error’s can also happen directly on the ERPLY Servers, as seen today. Though instances are few and far between, it is still important to have data backed up. Since our outages usually never exceed an hour, we have a few backup plans for you to choose from.
ERPLY’s BerlinPOS does have basic offline capability available. All data is cached and saved in the browser until a connection is reestablished. The BerlinPOS will only work if the Point of Sale is already opened for the day and on the screen. It is inaccessible if the register is not opened at the time of failure. You can view more details and how to set it up here.
We also have an offline version of ERPLY, known as WinPOS. Since this version does not live sync, it will have to be synced through launching the program at the users discretion. We strongly recommend syncing monthly or when there are significant changes to product data. You can download WinPOS here.
Important data such as customers and product information should also have a backup stored locally. Chances are you already have an Excel Spreadsheet with a full list of your items from importing products. Much like WinPOS recommend doing an export of product information monthly or whenever there is a significant change is product data. Using these tools, you can log sales and other information offline until our connection is reestablished. Once our servers are back online, you can input the offline sales into EPRLY through the POS or Back Office to ensure accurate reporting and sales data.
In the case of internet, hardware, or electrical failure, it is always important to have a system in place for manually processing sales. Whether this is by hand, a basic register, or a pencil and paper, it’s always best to plan for the worst. Having a manual backup gives your store a 100% uptime in the instances that your merchant or other services are having issues.