Godaddy Sites Back Online After Outage

A large number of websites that were either hosted or using GoDaddy name servers went down for more than four hours today following an outage in their DNS server. GoDaddy has been working to fix the issue and now it looks like almost all sites are back online.

There are speculations on what caused the glitch with some blaming it on the online vigilante group, Anonymous. A Brazilian twitter user loosely affiliated with Anonymous even tweeted the following, taking responsibility of the outage.

I’m taking godaddy down bacause well i’d like to test how the cyber security is safe and for more reasons that i can not talk now.

GoDaddy has been in the receiving end of similar attacks by Anonymous after their support to the infamous anti-piracy bill SOPA. But we are not yet able to verify whether this outage was a result of any kind of attack and there’s a good chance that this might just be a glitch in their DNS configuration. GoDaddy, while not mentioning whether the outage was a result of a DDoS attack, has tweeted that there was no compromise of user data.

WIRED is also reporting that GoDaddy has migrated some of the DNS records to VeriSign following the outage. It is not yet clear whether they are migrating the whole DNS configurations from the affected server or just the one for GoDaddy’s website which was also affected by the outage.

RIM’s Response to Recent Service Outage; $100 Worth of Free Apps as Apology

If there’s one thing you use your BlackBerry for, it’s games, right?

In response to the recent BlackBerry service outage, which left millions of users across the world with a completely useless device, RIM has apologized for the disruption and is attempting to win some confidence back. In a Press Release issued early this morning, Research in Motion announced they will be offering premium apps  to customers as an expression of appreciation. The short list of apps and games will be available later this week, and will stay “free” until the end of 2011. It’s about as free as the $40/month you pay your carrier for access to RIM’s proprietary backhaul.

Likely, you have a BlackBerry for enterprise use (because it’ll cost the company too much to drop the antiquated service), well RIM isn’t ignoring you either. Corporate enterprise customers will receive one month of free technical support. A whole 30 days of technical service tacked onto your existing ball-and-chain contract with RIM — free!

The complete selection of premium apps will become available to download at BlackBerry App World over a period of four weeks beginning Wednesday, October 19th.   The selections over this period will include the following (with more to come):

•  SIMS 3 – Electronic Arts
•  Bejeweled – Electronic Arts
•  N.O.V.A. – Gameloft
•  Texas Hold’em Poker 2 – Gameloft
•  Bubble Bash 2 – Gameloft
•  Photo Editor Ultimate – Ice Cold Apps
• Pro –
•  iSpeech Translator Pro –
•  Drive Enterprise –
•  Nobex Radioâ„¢ Premium – Nobex
•  Shazam Encore – Shazam
•  Vlingo Plus: Virtual Assistant – Vlingo

RIM’s enterprise customers will also be offered one month of free Technical Support.   Current customers will be offered a complimentary one month extension of their existing Technical Support contract, and customers who do not currently have a Technical Support contract will be offered a one month trial of RIM’s BlackBerry Technical Support Services – Enhanced Support, free of charge.   Additional details about the program and information about how to register will be available at

It’s a pretty unclear message that RIM is sending. “Our service was down for 3 days and you were left with a brick in your pocket, here are some free games to play (for when the service goes out again), and if you pay for the service, we’ll offer your free technical support (to tell you when the service goes out again)“.

It should also be noted that of the 12 listed apps that RIM will be offering customers, most of them  require  an active data connection to be of any use. You can’t use Shazam, Nobex Radio or the iSpeech applications without service.

So be sure to fire up AppWorld on your BlackBerry and grab those games before the service goes down again, we all know you can’t survive with BrickBreaker for another 3 days.

RIM Service Outage Frustrates Blackberry Users Worldwide

Research In Motion announced on it’s website today, that they are continuing to struggle with intermittent service outages. Problems began for the ailing company on Monday in Europe and have continued to spread to the U.S. and Canada today.

Blackberry Down

There is a link on their main page to the service updates. Below, you can see quoted from their website what has been announced up to the time of this article.

BlackBerry Service Update

Wednesday 12th October 9:45 (GMT-5)
BlackBerry subscribers in the Americas may be experiencing intermittent service delays this morning. We are working to resolve the situation as quickly as possible and we apologize to our customers for any inconvenience. We will provide a further update as soon as more information is available.

Wednesday 12th October 12:00 (GMT+1)
We know that many of you are still experiencing service problems. The resolution of this service issue is our Number One priority right now and we are working night and day to restore all BlackBerry services to normal levels. We will continue to keep this page updated.

Tuesday 11th October – 21:30 (GMT+1)
The messaging and browsing delays that some of you are still experiencing were caused by a core switch failure within RIM’s infrastructure. Although the system is designed to failover to a back-up switch, the failover did not function as previously tested. As a result, a large backlog of data was generated and we are now working to clear that backlog and restore normal service as quickly as possible. We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused to many of you and we will continue to keep you informed.

Tuesday 11th October – 16:00 (GMT+1)
Some of you are experiencing messaging and browsing delays. We are working to restore normal service as quickly as possible and we apologise for any inconvenience this has caused.

Monday 10th October – 20:46 (GMT+1)
Our sincere apologies to all of you affected by today’s BlackBerry service issues.

Monday 10th October – 15:00 (GMT+1)
We are currently working to resolve an issue impacting some of our BlackBerry customers in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region. In the meantime, we apologise to you for any inconvenience, and thank you for your patience.

It appears that problems began in North America sometime late Tuesday night. One of the Project Managers at my company experienced the problem this morning. Phone calls were coming through to his phone, but he could not browse the web or get email.

Frustrations like this are the last thing RIM needs right now. The iPhone and Android phones have almost wiped the Blackberry out of existence. According to a Business Week article, “RIM, based in Waterloo, Ontario, fell 1.8 percent to $23.97 at 10:48 a.m. New York time. Before today, the stock had dropped 58 percent this year.” A failure like this could prove to be a fatal blow if they don’t get this resolved soon.  There have been calls for a change of leadership in the RIM organization. It is hard to blame leadership for hardware failure, however, stack this on top of all the other challenges they face and it can’t help.

Are you a Blackberry user? If so, how has this affected you and will it affect your future purchasing decisions?

Amazon’s North Virginia Data Center Goes Down, Takes FourSquare, Quora, Reddit Along With It

Amazon AWSAmazon’s Cloud Computing Platform as a Service(PaaS) solution, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and it’s related services, Elastic Block Storage (EBS) & Relational Database Service were severely affected today as a result of downtime in North Virginia data centers.

This incident has brought down several of Amazon’s high profile clients, including FourSquare, Reddit, Quora, Heroku and several other startups relying on EC2. The problems started at about 01:00 PDT and Amazon is still working on it to recover and bring the services back on their feet. While Amazon hasn’t yet provided the full details of the outage, they have however posted an update saying that a networking event resulted in large re-mirroring of EBS volumes in US-EAST-1 region, which is catered to by the North Virginia data center.

Amazon AWS Status

This re-mirroring resulted in significant latency, making sites hosted in this region go offline. At the time of writing this, Reddit was under emergency read-only mode, Quora & FourSquare have put up a static “We’re having technical difficulties” page, while Heroku was crawling.

Amazon’s EBS has come under fire off late due to their elevated error rates, so much so that reddit’s admin jedberg has mentioned about “figuring out ways how to not use EBS anymore”. EBS’s last outage was just about a month ago, taking reddit down for a good part of the day.

It is, however, important to note that some other services using AWS, such as Netflix & Twilio have not suffered downtime due to their use of AWS instances from multiple availability zones, ensuring that even if a data center goes down, the instances from other availability zones are able to continue serving the websites.