Preventive Maintenance Checklist for Servers

Written by micah mcdunnigan
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Preventive Maintenance Checklist for Servers
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Reactive server maintenance, when you as an administrator simply deal with problems as they come, is more difficult and time-consuming than taking a preventive approach to maintenance. If you keep your eye on your server's hardware and software logs, you can reduce downtime by preventing many simple issues from ever coming up and catch important problems before they spiral into big problems.

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Wiring

Check the server's wiring, making sure all important cords are plugged securely into the appropriate ports. This may sound low-tech, but if a cord's connection is compromised in the middle of some data transfers, the effect it might have on server files could create a problem, the solution to which is much more time-intensive than simply plugging a cord back in.

Virus Scans

Schedule your system's antivirus software to perform virus scans on a regular basis. Detecting malicious code early is the easiest way to remove it, before it spreads through, and potentially beyond, your server. Just as important as scheduling the regular scans is to actually look at the scan results. The scan doesn't do any good if you don't notice when it detects malicious code.

Security Updates

In addition to promptly downloading available security updates for the software on your servers, read daily security briefs from security research firms. Downloading the software patches will make sure your server has the highest baseline of security possible, and reading regular security briefs keeps you ahead of security threats to your server.

Time

Make sure the time on all of your servers is correct and synchronised. Differences in time can cause serious system malfunctions and problems with your files.

Backups

Schedule regular backups of server data. Regularly check to make sure that the system is performing the scheduled backups. Also periodically check the file integrity of backups by making sure a random file from the backup opens correctly. Additionally, keep track of the memory size of your backups. If there is an unusual surge or drop in a backups size, investigate to make sure that all files are being stored properly.

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