Should Servers Be Rebooted?

A question that comes up on a pretty regular basis is whether or not servers should be routinely rebooted. Should they be rebooted once per week, or should they be allowed to run for as long as possible to achieve maximum “uptime”?

To me the answer is simple: with rare exception, regular reboots are the most appropriate choice for servers.

As with any rule, there are cases when it does not apply. For example, some businesses running critical systems have no allotment for downtime and must be available 24/7. Obviously systems like this cannot simply be rebooted in a routine way. However, if a system is so critical that it can never go down then this situation should trigger a red flag that this system is a point of failure. A strategy for handling downtime, whether planned or unplanned, should be initiated.

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