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Amazon Virginia Data Center Outage Causes Downtime for Reddit, Heroku

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An outage at Amazon‘s US East data center in Virginia was to blame Monday morning when many of its customers including Foursquare, Reddit, and Heroku saw downtime, according to a report by GigaOm.

This marks the second time in four months that problems at the facility have led to customer dowtime. In late June, the facility experienced two outages caused by lightning and lengthened by software bugs in the AWS infrastructure.

As its oldest and largest data center, Amazon’s East facility in Virginia is its most popular data center with many companies deploying their workloads at the site.

This time around, the problems are affecting at least 60 domains connected to Amazon’s Elastic Block Storage service. Amazon said a “small number” of its storage units are experiencing “degraded performance.”

Amazon kept customers informed via its status page, which currently shows that the company is experiencing difficulties with its Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (N. Virginia) service, Amazon Relational Database Service (N. Virginia), and AWS Elastic Beanstalk (N. Virginia) service.

The AWS status page for Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (N. Virginia) showed these updates:

10:38 AM PDT We are currently investigating degraded performance for a small number of EBS volumes in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region.

11:11 AM PDT We can confirm degraded performance for a small number of EBS volumes in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region. Instances using affected EBS volumes will also experience degraded performance.

11:26 AM PDT We are currently experiencing degraded performance for EBS volumes in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region. New launches for EBS backed instances are failing and instances using affected EBS volumes will experience degraded performance.

12:32 PM PDT We are working on recovering the impacted EBS volumes in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region.

12:51 PM PDT We are working on recovering the impacted EBS volumes in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region.

Additionally, the status page for Amazon’s Relational Database Service showed the following updates:

11:03 AM PDT We are currently experiencing connectivity issues and degraded performance for a small number of RDS DB Instances in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region.

11:45 AM PDT A number of Amazon RDS DB Instances in a single Availability Zone in the US-EAST-1 Region are experiencing connectivity issues or degraded performance. New instance create requests in the affected Availability Zone are experiencing elevated latencies. We are investigating the root cause.

And finally, the status page for AWS Elastic Beanstalk (N. Virginia) read the following updates:

11:06 AM PDT We are currently experiencing elevated API failures and delays launching, updating and deleting Elastic Beanstalk environments in the US-East-1 Region.

11:45 AM PDT We are continuing to see delays launching, updating and deleting Elastic Beanstalk environments in the US-East-1 Region.

Talk back: How does your cloud computing provider deal with outages? What do you think Amazon needs to do in order to prevent further downtime in its US-East-1 region? Let us know in the comment section.

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2 Comments

  1. Post author

    Thanks Phil, I think this is a really great tool for EC2 users.

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  2. Here is a blog I wrote for Systems Watch on how multi availability zones can still not ensure your safe during a Amazon outage. http://www.systemswatch.com/blog/2012/10/amazon-web-services-outages-even-in-multi-az/ Also a helpful tool available to the public free for realtime health status of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud EC2 in all regions http://www.systemswatch.com Good site to know quickly if its you are AWS.

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