The results are in and StockCharts.com was faster and much more stable in 2011. Did you notice? No? That's good!
In 2009, Pingdom reported that we were available 99.77% of the time (a total of 18 hours and 25 minutes of downtime). In 2010, Pingdom reported that we were up 99.94% of the time (a total of 5 hours and 9 minutes down). And in 2011, Pingdom reported we were up 99.99% of the time (0 hours and 50 minutes down). That means we're up to four nines! And you have to like that trend!
By the way, how does that compare to other popular web services? Check out this post from the guys behind the "Basecamp" service. They are crowing about "only" being down 16 minutes since mid-December. They point out that other popular services have been down anywhere from 6 minutes to 6 hours during that same period. StockCharts.com has been down zero minutes during that same time - even with a major snowstorm in the Seattle area at the start of January.
Some of the credit for the improvement in our uptimes has to go our decision to switch data vendors from ThomsonReuters to Interactive Data. The Interactive Data feed has been MUCH more stable and reliable making it that much easier for the rest of the website to remain up and running.
In addition to being up most of the time last year, we continued our trend of getting faster. The average response time for our SharpCharts workbench page decreased from 518ms in 2010 to 448ms in 2011 - a 13.5% decrease in the time it takes to get you your charts.
As I said when I reported last year's results, WE ARE STILL NOT SATISFIED WITH THESE NUMBERS. Our goal remains 100% uptime and we will continue to work towards that goal. There will be more bumps ahead along the way. We appreciate your patience when bumbs happen. But these numbers show that progress is happening.
Finally, there are two "gotchas" that come with this great news:
1.) Parts of our website are not under our direct control in terms of performance or uptime. Specifically, the Blogs area and the Support area. The Blogs area (controlled by a company called TypePad) was down 1 hour and 45 minutes last year (99.98%) and the Support area (controlled by a company called ZenDesk) was down 7 hours and 54 minutes (99.91%). We are not thrilled with those numbers and may being looking for alternatives if those companies cannot improve their results in 2012.
2.) Unfortunately, posts like this - where I point out how well things have been going - usually result in something going wrong somewhere almost immediately. Sigh. "Murphy's Law" is hard to fight. Hopefully, that won't happen this time.
Here's to an even better 2012.