Cloud Retailer is an application that partly resides on your location POS stations and partly lives in the Cloud. This document was created to help some of the questions that come up with regard to Cloud Retailers infrastructure used for hosting the cloud-based portion of the application.
Q: What companies/services are utilized to deliver the application?
A: While many people in our industry utilize Amazon, we purposely have avoided to use them for the delivery of any of our cloud-based services. As a direct, or potential competitor to basically all of our clients, we feel it is a major conflict of interest to have their data touch Amazon's systems OR help fund the same business that is likely working against them.
Cloud Retailer utilizes a few key providers for its infrastructure:
- Microsoft Azure
- Internal RITE/Cloud Retailer infrastructure.
Q: Is the Cloud Retailer infrastructure backed up?
A: Everything utilized is redundant. Additionally, all data is backed up 3 times per day, then encrypted and moved to another set of geographically dispersed servers. Redundancy testing occurs quarterly where we purposely bring down a portion of the infrastructure.
Q: Do you ever have outages?
A: As with any and all forms of technology, yes, occasionally there are outages due to issues that cannot be predicted. A few key notes about this:
- As of 10/1/2020, our uptime over a 6-month range was greater than 99.9% when considering unplanned downtime. This is on par with the very best cloud-based solutions available.
- When an unplanned outage occurs, a formal assessment is done internally.
- A vast majority of the functions at the POS are unaffected by the cloud portion of the system - so even if the back office goes down, the POS can continue to operate independently without an issue. For more information see this article: Capabilities of POS when the internet is unavailable / offline. As a result, many of our customers experience essentially zero downtime at the POS.
- We have a standing system maintenance window the first Sunday of every month between the hours of 11PM and 3AM CDT. You may experience slowness or downtime during this period.
Q: How do you make customers aware of outages?
A: Please visit http://status.cloudretailer.com
for information on upcoming maintenance windows or unplanned downtime. You can also subscribe to alerts there as well.
Q: Do you test your redundancy?
A: Yes, we have quarterly catastrophe tests where we purposely cause a portion of our systems to fail in a controlled fashion. These are typically done during our routine maintenance windows.