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Uptime of 20 top webmaster and hosting forums

Forums are a great resource, and there seems to exist at least one for every subject imaginable (yes, really). This being the web, there are of course bound to be a lot of forums that focus on webmasters and web hosting.

It isn’t always easy to keep a forum running smoothly. Forum software is notoriously resource heavy, and as forums grow, they can take a significant toll on the server they are hosted on. Since few people are as concerned with uptime and website performance as webmasters, we figured we would monitor the forums where the webmasters themselves hang out.

Why care about uptime, you ask? The short answer is: If a website is down it is invisible, both to visitors and search engines.

Ok, enough talking. Here they are, 20 of the top webmaster and hosting forums and their uptime, response time, and as a bonus, an link to an uptime report page that is being continuously updated.

Uptime and response time (November 26 – December 11, 2007)
Forum name Avg response time (ms) Downtime (minutes) Uptime % Uptime report page
Ozzu Webmaster Forum 686 0 100% Report
WebmasterWorld 733 0 100% Report
Web Host Directory Forums 829 0 100% Report
v7 Network Webmaster Forum 938 0 100% Report
Web Hosting Talk 955 0 100% Report
Reseller Board 1115 0 100% Report
TopHosts Web Hosting Forums 1464 0 100% Report
Web Hosting Chat 903 10 99.93% Report
Geek/Talk Webmaster Forum 860 20 99.91% Report
iWebtool Talk 1652 50 99.77% Report
SitePoint Forums 3301 55 99.75% Report 841 59 99.72% Report
The Webmaster Forums 632 60 99.72% Report
Hot Web Hosting Talk 997 69 99.68% Report
Webmaster-Talk 1318 85 99.61% Report
OutFront Webmaster Forum 775 95 99.56% Report
Web Host Chat 1036 120 99.45% Report
Web Hosting Forum 2604 174 99.19% Report
HostingDiscussion 1777 285 98.68% Report
Digital Point Forums 3560 300 98.34% Report

The table is sorted by uptime. Entries with the same uptime were sorted by response time.

The response times we are showing here include the load time of the HTML page (but no images or other resources), so perhaps we should have called it load time instead of response time. On the other hand, loading the HTML is only a small part of the page, so that would also have been a misnomer. Whatever you call it, it doesn’t tell the whole picture of how fast the entire site loads, BUT it does gives you a general idea of how responsive the site and the server is.

A note on response time

The response time numbers shown here are average values over many days (in this case just over 15 days). What that doesn’t show you is the great variation that can be seen over the course of an entire day, or over the course of a week or a month. There are also bound to be occasional spikes depending on usage (and possibly other factors, for example backups). Here is a good example, taken from our monitoring of Web Host Chat:

Response time graph

Again, note that this includes the loading of the HTML page.

Check out your favorite forum

As we stated earlier, these forums are a great resource, and we set up this monitoring because we were curious to see how they are performing. Pingdom is an uptime monitoring service, so we are always curious about these kinds of things.

We only have a few weeks of data so far, but we will let the server uptime monitoring continue, at least for a while, and see what happens. The public report pages will be up and running, so you can easily follow the uptime of your favorite forum(s). The pages are updated every 5 minutes.

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