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One Mother of a Day (A Few of Them, Actually)

Today is Mother’s Day. And even though we think it should be spelled Mothers’—because the word is clearly plural—we still think …

By Dave Eagle

Mommy, what's server latency?
Mommy, what’s server latency?

Today is Mother’s Day. And even though we think it should be spelled Mothers’—because the word is clearly plural—we still think it’s pretty special. You, our customers, know this also: every cafe, restaurant, pub, and tea room is booked out to capacity. No doubt the retail stores out there, got their fair share yesterday.

The last thing any of us want is for the challenges we face behind-the-scenes to creep out and affect the mothers out there who, for one day at least, get to relax and have everyone else take care of them. A huge part of our mission has always been to keep you up and running, to ensure an amazing customer experience in your venues—for our customers (that’s you!) and yours.

With all that in mind, we thought we should update you to let you know what’s happening with the recent server issues we faced. This is one of those times where it’s good to start at the ending, and spare you from any undue worry.

So, to make a long story short: it’s fixed!

Everything on our end is behaving as expected, which means we expect you and your customers will have the most enjoyable Mother’s Day ever.

Here’s the longer version:

We’ve faced a number of technical challenges over the past few days, the first of which, was a bit after 12 noon on Friday, where our engineering team received a series of real time notifications from the tools we use to constantly monitor our cloud-based infrastructure. We immediately got onto figuring out what the issue was and how to rectify it. Meanwhile, our support put all hands on deck to support our valuable partners and customers.

We were able to quickly identify the issue: a spike in traffic on our servers—like, a big one—created a bottleneck, this triggered POS devices across the world to retry requests to Kounta at a greater-than-normal rate. Imagine if everyone in Sydney tried to get on the M1 simultaneously and, when traffic slowed down as a result, each car spawned a copy of itself to try again. The M1 would stop moving entirely and, for some of you, so did Kounta. Even though Kounta can work offline, you lost access to the online features of the POS and Back Office.

Our team worked tirelessly to identify and resolve the problem, which we did by early Friday evening. Then it was just a matter of working with our affected users to restore access to Kounta, all while making sure that sales data was captured.

Sometimes computing amounts to a trial by fire, and we’re so appreciative that our customers understand this. Your patience with us and the constructive conversations we had with you were instrumental in us getting this matter resolved quickly.

At the time of this writing, we’ve pushed an update to our software that will eliminate this issue. And while we were at it we improved a few things, too. Kounta 4.4.2 is the version you’ll be running on Mother’s Day, and we’re confident you’ll be providing experiences for your customers that are memorable for all the right reasons.

Version 4.4.2 highlights include:

  • A fix to address Friday’s issue
  • Ability to edit orders while in offline mode for any reason
  • Ability to process integrated Tyro payments if Kounta servers are offline
  • Ability to process integrated Albert payments if Kounta servers are offline
  • Ability to process integrated Credit Card payments if Kounta servers are offline (US, UK customers)
  • These improvements will ensure that any future offline issues you might experience are much more manageable.

The Kounta Platform has grown tremendously over the last year: we’ve add more improvements and features to better serve you. We continue to add best-in-world people to bolster our team—especially in DevOps, Engineering, and Support. In light of these recent events we will further ramp up our placement of even more people. Kounta will continue to grow so that it remains the most advanced platform for you to sell, manage, and extend your retail and hospitality business.
Now go call your mother. She loves you.