When people search for servers for web-hosting, they pay attention to price, speed, RAM and storage, forgetting about another crucial factor – the quality of technical support. Did you know that server administrators are the ones who stand behind flawless performance, trouble-shooting, traffic spike handling and other important features you need so much? In fact, they do tremendous work to provide you with excellent hosting services. But what exactly are their responsibilities?
Clients leasing servers cannot control their performance around the clock, while a team of administrators does. They are up to every move, always ready to repair or replace hardware, workstations and network devices when they are damaged. They may be expected to work with issue tickets, helping customers to deal with different kinds of problems and answering various questions. Among other responsibilities are data backups, operating system updating and maintenance tasks. But does that mean that if everything is working flawlessly, they are simply twiddling thumbs?
Not at all. Troubleshooting is just a tip of the huge iceberg of their workload. Server administrators have to train and learn how to work with various operating systems, which takes a lot of time and sometimes requires obtaining certification. Since company computer systems differ, server managers make some kind of research of these systems and prepare recovery plans for this or that kind of disaster. Furthermore, they might install programs, update OS with new patches, add users and manage security policy of each server.
Another sphere of responsibility is the establishment of trouble-free communication between workstations and servers. A server administrator does the following: set company’s domain up, installs new network services and monitors for problems, using OS utilities. Besides, he or she needs to ensure network security, which sometimes requires tightening of the network's firewall settings.
Thus, a server administrator designs, installs, manages and optimizes both hardware and software to maintain brilliant performance of servers and ensure availability of users’ applications. Such person is required to have sufficient knowledge of information systems, computer sciences (coding, scripting) and information technologies. And of course, a good server manager should be a smart, open-minded person to come up with ideas for network functioning improvement and problem solving.