How To Tell If That Website Is Really Down

Have you ever wished there was an easy way to tell if a website is down? Like, down down, and not just the fault of your own terrible Internet connection? I mean, we've all been there: You're all burrito-ed up in your bed, ready to stalk your favorite witchy blogger on your phone or tablet or whatever because real life is draining and you'd rather just look at heavily edited photos of houseplants and crystals... and suddenly Instagram won't load? "Unable to refresh," it says. "Check your connection." You Google, "Is Instagram down???????!!!" because the last thing you want to do is un-burrito yourself and deal with your wireless router — you know that it's almost certainly your wireless router, because Instagram is rarely, if ever, malfunctioning — but somebody somewhere is always saying that a website is down and so you're trapped in a spiral, refreshing your page for all of eternity or until your roommate comes home and fixes the WiFi. No longer, my sweet burrito babes. I promise it is very easy.

Because a thing that the Internet has proven is that you are never the only person experiencing a problem, there are a number of sites dedicated entirely to tracking popular websites and any bugs that may be occurring. Is It Down Right Now, Down For Everyone Or Just Me, and Down Detector are some of the more well-trafficked resources. They're also all very user-friendly, which is great for me, because I can use my laptop to check email and watch Outlander and that's pretty much it.

All three allow you to search a website's status by simply entering the URL, and several of them will also provide a list of often searched sites in case you can't remember the URL or something. Whatever, I don't know your life. The sites work by compiling user reports and their own data to map the status of all your favorite websites. Like a watchdog organization, but for social media addicted Millennials.

Here is what it's like to use one of these bad boys. You don't even have to leave your bed to do it. Amazing, right?

Now, my personal favorite for these sites is Is It Down Right Now? No, it is not the prettiest site, but I find that it's a nice combo of giving a straightforward answer — yes, it's down, or no, it's not — along with more specific information about reported issues and the site's history of serious user issues. Here's a handy dandy set of step by step instructions for how to use it, in case that is something that would be useful for you. Spoiler: It's only two steps long. Because it's actually that easy. I promise.

1. Go To Is It Down Right Now?

This is what the homepage looks like. There's a search bar at the top for you to enter the URL of a specific site, as well as a running list of websites that IIDRN have been checking. Getting a by-the-minute play-by-play very much eases my anxiety. Love it.

2. Type In The URL Of The Website You Want To Check And Click "Check"

Once you search a specific URL — in this case I just went with Facebook — you'll receive a personalized status check, along with a history of IIDRN's automatic check ups. Comforting, no?

Now you'll always know whether it's the Internet, or if it's you. Go forth. Use that knowledge for the forces of good. I believe in you.

Images: Getty Images; IIDRN (2)