I perform web hosting duties for a large university. My team’s clients are university developers who you’d think would know the deal by now. The website in question has a M-F 9-5 support window, is the QA instance, and was recently upgraded.
Client: (emailing at 6:30PM, Friday afternoon) Hey, the email function worked on the old version of the site, but it’s not working now. Can you look into this as soon as possible?
Me: Sure, I’ll look at it first thing Monday morning.
Client: (emailing 7:55AM, Monday morning) It looks like the email function is still broken. Please address this as soon as you can, I need to demonstrate it this afternoon.
Me: It is the first thing on my list today.
After about an hour of troubleshooting, I discovered the problem and how to fix it. It required a reboot of the site, so I emailed the client to let him know that there would be a short bit of downtime.
Me: Hi! I’m going to need to restart the site at noon today to resolve the email delivery issue. Please let me know now if that will interrupt your work, if I don’t hear from you I’ll restart at 12:00PM sharp. Downtime will last about 5 minutes.
Client: Is this proposed downtime going to affect your progress with troubleshooting my email issue?
Me: The proposed downtime is to resolve the email issue.
Client: Okay, let me know when it is done.
Noon comes and I restart the site. I received this update immediately after starting the reboot.
Client: Hey, I’m getting a temporarily unavailable error from the site, what’s going on? When can I expect the site to be back up, I have a demo of the email function this afternoon, also, is the email function fixed yet? I really need that as soon as possible.