Data corruption is the unintentional transformation of a file or the losing of info that usually occurs during reading or writing. The reason can be hardware or software fail, and consequently, a file may become partially or fully corrupted, so it'll no longer function correctly because its bits shall be scrambled or lacking. An image file, for example, will no longer show an actual image, but a random combination of colors, an archive will be impossible to unpack for the reason that its content will be unreadable, etc. When such an issue occurs and it's not found by the system or by an administrator, the data will be corrupted silently and in case this happens on a drive that's a part of a RAID array where the information is synced between different drives, the corrupted file will be copied on all the other drives and the harm will be permanent. Numerous commonly used file systems either don't have real-time checks or do not have high quality ones which will detect an issue before the damage is done, so silent data corruption is a common matter on web hosting servers where substantial volumes of data are kept.
No Data Corruption & Data Integrity in Hosting
We've dealt with the issue of silent data corruption on our hosting servers by using the advanced Z file system, or ZFS. The latter is superior to other file systems because it is the only one in existence that checks all files instantly by using a checksum - a digital identifier that is unique for each file. When you upload content to your account, it'll be stored on several SSD drives and frequently synchronized between them for redundancy. ZFS regularly examines the checksum of all files and if any file is detected as damaged, it is replaced immediately with a good copy from some other disk. As this happens in real time, there's no risk that a damaged file may remain or may be copied on the other SSDs. ZFS needs lots of physical memory to execute the real-time checks and the benefit of our cloud hosting platform is that we use multiple very powerful servers working together. In case you host your websites with us, your data will be intact no matter what.
No Data Corruption & Data Integrity in Semi-dedicated Servers
We've avoided any probability of files getting damaged silently due to the fact that the servers where your semi-dedicated server account will be created work with a powerful file system known as ZFS. Its key advantage over various other file systems is that it uses a unique checksum for every single file - a digital fingerprint that's checked in real time. Since we store all content on multiple SSD drives, ZFS checks whether the fingerprint of a file on one drive corresponds to the one on the remaining drives and the one it has stored. When there's a mismatch, the corrupted copy is replaced with a healthy one from one of the other drives and because this happens in real time, there's no chance that a corrupted copy could remain on our web servers or that it can be duplicated to the other hard disks in the RAID. None of the other file systems employ such checks and what is more, even during a file system check after an unexpected power loss, none of them can discover silently corrupted files. In comparison, ZFS won't crash after a power failure and the regular checksum monitoring makes a time-consuming file system check obsolete.