Service Level Agreement (SLA)

Sandcastle is committed to offering exceptional service to all customers. Our Service Level Agreement (SLA) guarantees your website availability, reliability and performance – as well as our commitment to the highest level of professionalism in assisting you with the timely maintenance of your site.


Uptime Guarantee

Sandcastle has a 99.9% uptime guarantee on any site hosted with us on our Rackspace server. We are enrolled in Rackspace's Intensive Proactive Support service which offers, (among a wide variety of tools), custom monitoring to ensure applications are performing as expected and to alert us of any anomalies. Any failure to meet our uptime guarantee will result in a refund on hosting services pro-rated for the amount of resulting downtime. In the event of service disruptions caused by unlikely events such as earthquakes or other natural disasters, regional or countrywide network failures, or any disruptions caused by acts of terrorism or war, our technical staff (along with Rackspace technicians) will work diligently to restart normal services as quickly as possible. However, these types of service failures are excluded from our guarantee.


Data Protection & PCI Compliance

Sandcastle takes security and data protection very seriously. Our servers are protect by a dedicated hardware firewall and access is limited to our office, staff and clients who provide a static IP for connectivity. Our server environment is PCI compliant and we are happy to work with our clients to provide PCI certification for their website through several third-party providers.


Data Backup & Recovery

Our server utilizes Rackspace's Managed Backup service, providing full weekly backups with daily differentials, which are stored offsite for increased security. These backups include all site files (graphics, html, programming, documents, etc.) as well as live SQL data and server configuration files/programs. If needed, we can recover files quickly using our online account management tool, typically in under an hour's time. Additionally, the drives are RAID 1 mirrored and hot-swappable – thus a hard drive failure is not catastrophic. In the event of a hardware failure, the Intensive Proactive Support service will be informed immediately and take corrective action, with a one hour hardware replacement guarantee.


Customer Support

We work hard to provide an exceptional level of support for the whole lifecycle of our client's projects. We guarantee that we will respond to any non-critical issues (i.e., site updates, questions, etc.) within one business day during our normal business hours: Monday through Friday 8:00AM to 5:30PM Pacific, excluding any standard holidays. We can also provide cell phone contact information for off-hour or emergency situations. Additionally, we monitor our email during evenings and weekends. Of course, Rackspace technicians are monitoring the server 24/7/365 and are available for any critical hosting support issues at all times.


Scheduled Maintenance Events

In efforts to maintain a robust and secure hosting environment we will occasionally schedule maintenance events to perform updates and install system patches. You will be notified of these maintenance events 48 hours in advance (unless there are high-priority, emergency requirements), and these events typically require server downtime less than 10 minutes. These scheduled maintenance events are excluded from our Uptime Guarantee.


Disruptions Caused by Customer Actions

Sandcastle cannot be held liable in the event of service outages caused by direct customer actions. Although there are limitations on the manipulation of critical server configuration files, (server settings, etc.) that a customer is allowed, if any customer's actions directly result in service outage, Sandcastle will not compensate the customer affected by this outage. It is up to the customer to think of the consequences related to his/her actions. DNS service expiration, DNS legal disputes, web page deletions and edits are just some examples of such troubles. Sandcastle reserves the right to charge customers time and material fees dependent on the type of service required for any issues caused directly by customer actions.