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The Study Hall

Uptime Status, Traffic Reports, and Blank Spaces

Does it always seem like your lane on the freeway is moving the slowest? There’s not a whole lot you can do once you’re bumper to bumper—beyond some breathing exercises or singing along to your favorite Taylor Swift song (Blank Space anyone?).

Canvas Uptime Status Traffic Reports Blank Space

As I sat in the slow lane yesterday, I thought about an issue that’s currently causing our customers some confusion, and the proverbial light bulb went on. You see, we’re an open company, but when it comes to reporting uptime and application status, we might be too open.

Here’s what I mean. If Canvas were a freeway, it would be 51 lanes wide (one lane for each cluster where a cluster holds anywhere from a handful to 40 or 50 customers). When there’s a problem in a single Canvas lane (cluster), we blast it out to the whole world and not just to the 2 percent or so of the population affected. This causes unnecessary alarm for the other 98 percent of Canvas institutions. It’s a bit like a traffic report saying the freeway is completely stopped and that you should pick an alternate route when only one of many (in this case 51) lanes is backed up.

In the event of a service interruption, we send notifications directly to affected institutions. In addition to those targeted emails, we provide the ability to “subscribe” to our status page. Anyone who subscribes gets a notification when we post an update, even if that update doesn’t pertain to their institution.

This means we’re double-communicating to affected institutions and unnecessarily alarming those who are unaffected. To eliminate confusion and alarm, we’re going to remove the subscription ability on the status page. We’ll still post all status updates there, even if they only impact an institution or two, and we’ll start investigating ways to filter the results on the status page so you only see what’s relevant to you.

So, keep blasting that Taylor Swift, drive safely, and rest easy knowing Canvas guarantees 99.9 percent uptime.

Keep Learning,
Mitch Macfarlane
SVP of Customer Success