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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

As with any product or service which you can buy, you will have questions about what exactly you are getting. With Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., the answers to many of these questions are what make our service superior. Many of the common questions which we are asked, along with their answers, are listed here for your convenience:

Servers

  • What is a server?
  • What operating system does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., use for hosting my web site?
  • How much disk space do I have available for my site?
  • Why is the MacOS the single best choice to have my web site hosted on?

Bandwidth

  • How much bandwidth do I have available for my site?
  • Where does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., connect to?
  • How much bandwidth does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., make available for my web site?

Reliability

  • How often does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., backup my site?
  • How does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., maintain their high level of server reliability?
  • How are the servers at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., monitored for accessibility and reliability?

Support

  • Who do I call for technical support or in the event of an emergency?
  • What hours are Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., available to help me?

Domain Registration

  • Who actually owns a domain (i.e. what is the Registrant)?
  • What is the Administrative contact?
  • What is the Technical contact?
  • What is the Billing contact?
  • What are the Domain Name Servers?
  • What is Deep Sky Technologies, Inc.'s, policy regarding domain registrations?

Miscellaneous

  • What is a T1?
  • What is a domain name?
  • What is a UPS?


FAQ: Servers

What is a server?

A server is a computer or device on a network that manages network resources. In the case of the Internet, a server responds to requests by "serving" the requested information. Responding to multiple requests for different information is a resource-intensive task, which is why we have multiple dedicated servers.

What operating system does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., use for hosting my web site?

When considering all of the factors involved in hosting web sites, including security, reliability, speed, and features, the choice of platforms to host on is plainly clear: MacOS.

How much disk space do I have available for my site?

For almost all practical purposes, Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., does not rigidly enforce a storage limit for a web site. We do ask our customers to be reasonable about what is stored in the web site. Realistically, a 1 GB limit per web site is more than reasonable for all practical purposes, though of course we often allow storage to exceed this quantity on an as needed basis for our clients.

Why is the MacOS the single best choice to have my web site hosted on?

The list of reasons why the MacOS is the best solution for web sites would be endless. So, in trying to be brief, we have compiled the following key points to note concerning the clear advantage the MacOS has over any other operating system for hosting a web site.

No other single platform provides as much security control as the MacOS. Where there are literally daily reports and warnings of server violations for Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows NT, and all flavors of UNIX/Linux, there has never been a major intrusion onto a MacOS based web server. And, when properly configured, the MacOS platform is virtually hacker proof.

In terms of reliability, the MacOS platform has no rivals. Unlike other operating system, the underlying architecture of the MacOS is tried and true, with over 15 years of knowledge and experience programmed into it. Windows operating systems can barely bost a history half as long; and Linux is even younger and less polished. Age and experience has provided the MacOS with an unequalled degree of sophistication and reliability.

Maintenance and ease of use is a big factor for any server software and hardware. And, what better company to turn to than the pioneers of usability: Apple Computer, Inc. No company has more experience and knowledge about providing low to no maintenance products than Apple, and it shows throughout all of their history, especially in the hardware and software used by Deep Sky Technologies, Inc.

With the unique software capabilities that Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., has built into the web serving software, there is an unlimitted degree of scalability available for all of the web sites hosted. This capability is provided as a result of the truly powerful and technologically advanced nature of the MacOS and the functionality it allows for all of the web services offered by Deep Sky Technologies, Inc.


FAQ: Bandwidth

How much bandwidth do I have available for my site?

Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., maintain two separate T-1 connections connected directly to two separate backbone providers. Each T-1 connection is a full T-1, providing continuous speeds up to 1.5 Mbps. The two T-1s are configured under BGP-4, which provides instantenous routing rollover to the fastest line for all requests. This combination provides for the greatest degree of reliability and throughput possible for all of our hosting customers.

Where does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., connect to?

Each T-1 that Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., maintains is connected to a separate backbone provider (AT&T and Sprint). routing of this connectivity in central Florida is geographically disparate, thereby virtually eliminating the possibility of complete connectivity failures. And, with the BGP-4 network configuration, requests to your site are always routed through the shortest possible connection to your servers.

How much bandwidth does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., make available for my web site?

Both T-1s are available full time for all of the web sites that Deep Sky Technologies, Inc. hosts. All of the web servers are connected directly to the same switch as the network crossover point as the routed T-1 circuits, eliminating any intervening hardware which can possibly slow down connections to your web site. This simple and efficient configuration guarantees that your web site has access to a full T-1 of bandwidth (1.5 Mbps) at all times.

Why should I not use DSL technology for my hosting needs?

T1 lines (aka DS1 circuits) are point to point circuits with a dedicated bandwidth (1.5 Mbps). As point to point circuits, their cost depends on the length of the loop from you to the location in which the circuit terminates. T1 ciruits are available in all markets.

DSL lines are a multipoint circuit, that are based on DSLAMS, which are essentially frames. Your DSL line goes to a central office where it is mutliplexed with the other DSL lines in the DSLAM/frame and delivered to a NSP via a point to point connection. This means that the point to point connection is oversold in terms of bandwidth. Your packets compete with those of others for the bandwidth to the NSP. This is never the case of a point to point circuit where all the bandwidth is yours. DSL is also distance sensitive, so while if you are right next door you can get good bandwidth, as you move away from the central office, your speed drops. It also drops with line quality. So if you are a mile from the central office, you'll be getting speeds less than a T1 at best, and true packet throughput will not even be your rated amount due to the oversell of the circuit from the DSLAM to the NSP.

Furthermore, in most locations, the DSL lines are sold by CLEC (Competitive Local Exchange Carriers) such as CoVad or Northpoint. These are "competitors" with the local phone company for your "telephony circuits". DSL circuits have a lower priority with many "TelCos" in the scheme of things. They'll first fix point to point circuits, or trunks as the "TelCo" thinks of them, then POTS lines (telephone lines), then DSL circuits. So in the event of an outage, you can expect to be the last, instead of the first, to be serviced. And the priority is obviously with the TelCo's circuits, then with their competitors circuits in real experience.

If you're searching for true hosting services, don't place servers on DSL lines. If you want to hook up your office and your casual office server, it's probably fine. But for a server farm we think you could do far better. For an office that relies on IP connectivity for its business functions, we'd suggest paying the extra for the T1 since you'd get true SLAs (Service Level Agreements), QoS agreeements (Quality of Service agreements) that are real, a managed circuit, and business level service direct from the "TelCo" as opposed to through multiple tiers. If you can afford the downtime, in some cases days, then the DSL might be OK, but we'd suggest at least have some dial-backup ISDNs in place. And remember, to get the speed you'll need, you have to be close to the central office.

If you want fractional T1 speeds, use frame relay.

This is why Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., exclusively uses DS1 circuits and above for all of our connectivity needs. All of our hosting customers can take advantage of the increased speed and reliability by using our services. And, you will never be "taken" by the hosting company that hangs their servers off of DSL lines.


FAQ: Reliability

How often does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., backup my site?

Daily backups are done on all of the servers at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc. The backups are maintained for restoration purposes only in the event of hardware failure or a catastrophic event. Providing daily backups of your hosted services guarantees the highest possible reliability for our services no matter what the circumstances.

How does Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., maintain their high level of server reliability?

There are many factors which contribute to the overall level of high reliability of the services offered by Deep Sky Technologies, Inc. These include, though are not limitted to, the hosting platform, the hosting operating system, the server software, the local network configuration, the external network link, the monitor services, the overall hardware and software configuration, and the experience of the personnel at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc.

No single factor itself provides the reliability that the hosting services at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., affords to your web site. Rather, the combination of all of these factors, and many others, integrate cohesively to exact the unparalled level of service available from Deep Sky Technologies, Inc. Through the experience and skills of our personnel, we offer the highest rated service level possible.

Combining all of these factors is what allows many of the servers at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., months and sometimes even years of uninterrupted accessibility and service.

How are the servers at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., monitored for accessibility and reliability?

There are two different monitoring systems which Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., uses to monitor all of the servers and connecitivity.

First, we have an internal monitor on all of the our hardware and servers which check whether service is up and available. This provides for us reliable internal checking for whether the hardware and software in our server room is functioning properly. In the event of a problem, we are notified immediately, through a variety of channels (multiple emails over multiple routes, multiple pages over multiple networks, etc.), to make sure that the problem is addressed and corrected as quickly as possible.

Second, we have an external monitoring service that again checks all of our hardware and software services. By having a redundant monitor, though, we can be assured also that our connecitivity to the Internet is both reliable and available at all times. Again, this external monitoring service provides for full redundancy, both for checks and notification services, for all of the services available from Deep Sky Technologies, Inc.

It is worth noting, too, that our external monitoring service provider is the single most respected and reliable monitoring service in the world. The fine people at Internet Resources Group, providers of the Red Alert! monitoring service, are known world wide for their reliable and dependable services.

When all of these monitoring and notification systems are combined, it provides for the fastest and most complete service management available. You can be rest assured that any problems that may occur with any of the web sites Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., host will be corrected as quickly as possible.

Of course, with the reliability of service which Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., provides, these notification systems are rarely used. But, as with all of our services, we prefer to be doubly and triply assured that we provide the best possible service to all of our hosting customers.

Feel free to contact us at any time regarding these issues. It is our goal to provide the simplest and most reliable services to all of our customers.


FAQ: Support

Who do I call for technical support or in the event of an emergency?

For technical support, feel free to contact us at any time by voice. We are always available to help you during normal business hours (U.S., Eastern time zone). And, quite often, we are available for technical support by voice after hours, as well.

Technical support is available full time through email, as well. If the support you need is not an emergency, email is actually the best route to communicate with the personnel at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc. And, you can be confident that for almost all issues you will have an answer within 24 hours.

In the event of an emergency, there is a full time emergency staff member at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc. available. So, no matter what the day or time, you can always reach someone to help resolve your issue.

Full contact information for all of the personnel at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., is available on the Contact Us page.

What hours are Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., available to help me?

For technical support, personnel at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., are available during normal business hours (U.S., Eastern time zone).

In the event of an emergency, personnel at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to help you.

Full contact information for all of the personnel at Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., is available on the Contact Us page.


FAQ: Domain Registration

Who actually owns a domain (i.e. what is the Registrant)?

The individual or organization that registers a specific domain name with a registrar (a company that handles the registration of domain names). This individual or organization holds the right to use that specific domain name for a specified period of time, provided certain conditions are met and the registration fees are paid. This person or organization is the legal entity bound as the owner of a domain.

It is very common for the Registrant of a domain to be called the Organizational contact. The Registrant of a domain is the ultimate owner of a domain. Though the other listed contacts (e.g. Administrative, Technical, etc.) with a domain have the authority to manage and move the domain, they do not have the authority to change the owner of a domain, the Registrant. It is the Registrant of a domain which has the final say on how and where a domain is registered and served from.

It is common practice among many hosting companies, and even among registrars (companies that register domain names), to actually list themselves as the Registrant of a domain. This can make it very difficult to move a domain or change any of its settings. At the very least, you should always make certain that you are listed as the Registrant of your domain.

What is the Administrative contact?

The administrative contact is an individual authorized to interact with the registrar on behalf of the domain name registrant. The administrative contact should be able to answer non-technical questions about the domain name's registration and the domain name registrant.

It is a fairly common practice to list an individual within the Registrant organization as the Admin. contact for a domain. But, there are good reasons to not actually do this, reasons which are detailed below.

What is the Technical contact?

The technical contact is the person or organization who maintains the primary domain name server. The technical contact should be able to answer technical questions about the domain name's primary domain name server and work with technically-oriented people in other domains to solve technical problems that affect the domain name.

It is a common practice to list an individual or role within your ISP or hosting company as the technical contact for a domain.

What is the Billing contact?

The billing contact is the person designated to receive the invoice for domain name registration and re-registration fees. The billing contact should be in a position to ensure prompt payment of fees.

What are the Domain Name Servers?

Also called a host or a name server. A computer that has both the software and the data (zone files) needed to resolve domain names to Internet Protocol (IP) numbers.

Basically, a domain name server provides the correct and authoritative addressing information for a domain. A DNS server makes certain that people that are looking for your domain find it on the correct servers, whether that be for web, email, or any other Internet traffic.

What is Deep Sky Technologies, Inc.'s, policy regarding domain registrations?

It is a very common practice for spammers (senders of unsolicited bulk email) to pull all of the email addresses out of the domain registration database (the WHOIS database). These email addresses then become the targets of loads of unsolicited email for all forms of online scams, schemes, and fraudulent activities.

At Deep Sky Technologies, Inc., we are already familiar with the practices of these unscrupulous individuals and how to handle spam email when we receive it from them. We alleviate the need for our clients to have to deal with this annoyance by making certain that no electronic contact information for our clients is listed in the WHOIS database with a registered domain. We do this be making certain that the Administrative, Technical, and Billing contacts for a domain are listed as DSTi addresses. By doing this, there are other benefits to our clients, as well.

One benefit is that the clients of DSTi need not worry about the movement of domains which may occur during normal upkeep and maintenance of the services available at DSTi. At times, DSTi may reconfigure our internal servers to maximize the serving of your web site and other online services. This may involve slight changes to the domain registration. By listing only DSTi personnel as the Admin. and Technical contacts, this movement can be accomplished much more efficiently without having to bother unnecessarily our clients or their online services.

As well, because the Admin. and Technical contacts have the authority to literally move a domain, it can become a security issue to have outside contacts listed in either of these locations. With only DSTi contacts listed as Admin. and Technical contacts, we can effectively prevent any illegal movement of your domain, providing yet another level of protection for your online services.

Finally, by listing DSTi as the billing contact for your domain, we handle all registration and re-registration needs for your domain. It is not uncommon for a domain renewal notice to not be properly delivered to the listed Billing contact for a domain. This can result in the actual loss of your domain in some cases. DSTi handles the re-registration of your domain internally and bills you separately for the re-registration fees. And, this is done without increasing the registration fees at all for your domain; we charge you the normal $35 per year registration fee which Network Solutions, Inc., would charge you. With DSTi handling your domain registration and re-registration needs, you never need worry about being late or failing to pay your domain registration fees ever again.

At DSTi, we make certain that the listed Registrant for a domain is you. You ultimately own your domain and should be listed as the organizational contact for your domain. Without there being any electronic contacts listed for a registrant, though, you can be assured that you will never receive spam from being listed in the WHOIS database.

All of these advantages to domain management within DSTi have been learned over years of service to our customers. We know that these practices provide the greatest level of service, security, and reliability to our customers while protecting completely their privacy and vested interest in their domain(s).

Feel free to contact us at any time regarding these issues. It is our goal to provide the simplest and most reliable services to all of our customers.


FAQ: Miscellanous

What is T1?

A T1 line is a high-speed digital connection capable of transmitting data at a rate of approximately 1.5 million bps (bits per second). It is large enough to send and receive very large text files, graphics, sounds, and databases instantaneously, and is the fastest speed commonly used to connect networks to the Internet. Sometimes referred to as a leased line, our use of multiple T1's ensures consistently fast web sites.

What is a UPS?

Short for "Uninterrupted Power Supply", we keep a UPS in the case of spikes, surges, or power outages. If any problem occurs with power, our computers can keep running.

What is a domain name?

A domain name is your address on the World Wide Web. With your company's online image at stake, you should make sure your domain name includes your company name (www.yourbusiness.com ). Then, your e-mail address will also be specific to your company. Names, such as brian@yahoo.com, appear unprofessional and may damage sales. Your potential clients may assume that your company isn't established if it doesn't have its own domain name. The domain name is very much the storefront of business today. There are tens of thousands of domain names registered every day with over 4 million already reserved. Reserve your name before it becomes the property of someone else.

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