Amazon data centre glitch hits top web services

A hardware failure at an Amazon data centre has downed several top web services, raising renewed concerns about the reliability of cloud-based infrastructure. Instagram, Netflix, Twitter’s Vine video-sharing application and holiday site Airbnb were among the services that were slow or inaccessible at the weekend because they all rely on Amazon Web Services.

The fault was traced to a datacentre in northern Virginia that was struggling to keep up with demand, according to the BBC. After the problems were resolved, Amazon said the interruptions to service was caused by the “partial failure of a networking device” but gave no further details.

The weekend interruptions came less than a week after Amazon’s North American web stores went offline for about 30 minutes, also due to problems in the company’s northern Virginia data centre.

It followed a similar disruption on Google that lasted four minutes and reportedly caused a 40% drop in global internet traffic.

The service interruptions have highlighted the vulnerability of cloud-based services, showing that glitches at a single data centre can cause widespread disruptions.




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