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Apr 26 11

Amazon datacentres are back online after a long outage

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ONLINE RETAILER AND WEB HOST Amazon has finally brought its  Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) datacentres back  online after nearly a week long outage that caused major distruptions to  websites around the globe.

The Amazon datacentres cut out last Thursday, taking websites  like Reddit, Quora and Foursquare offline, but services have returned to normal  just today, making it a difficult Easter weekend for many.

The majority of Amazon’s datacentres in the US are back to normal operations, but two are still experiencing some  difficulties in Northern Virginia. An EC2 datacentre is having problems with  instance connectivity, latency and error rates, while an AWS datacentre is  experiencing database instance connectivity and latency issues.

It’s likely that the holiday weekend contributed to the slow pace with which  Amazon brought its services back online, but that excuse will do little to calm  the thousands of businesses that experienced downtime as a result, some of whom  will have missed out on Easter sales.

Cloud management firm Rightscale said that Amazon’s services are usually  extremely reliable and that this has led many customers to become complacement  about the possibility of service outages.

Rightscale criticised Amazon for failing to properly  communicate about the outages, having taken 40 minutes to post its initial  status update, and having not provided enough information for companies using  its services to take action.

The downtime marks one of the most significant outages for cloud computing so  far, but Rightscale still believes the cloud is a more reliable and safer bet  than running traditional data centres, despite the potential for cloud  outages to cause widespread chaos for many companies.

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