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From angry Adele fans to broken robot vacuums: AWS is down across the US

It started early Tuesday morning. Robot vacuums stop sucking, WiFi cameras stop watching, and eager datasets can’t “swipe right” on their smartphone app.

Power failure at Amazon Web Services, Amazon’s cloud computing arm, has emerged in the online economy, crippling services used by millions.

Among the most distraught were fans of British singer Adele, who had been hoping for the first tickets to her upcoming Las Vegas residence.

“Due to an Amazon Web Services (AWS) outage affecting companies globally,” ticket seller Ticketmaster explain, “All of Adele’s Fan Verified Pre-sales that were originally scheduled for today have been carried over to tomorrow.”

Outages once again highlight the extent to which many of the internet’s most popular services rely cloud computing infrastructure handled by a very small number of large companies.

According to Gartner, 80% of the cloud market is managed by only 5 companies. Amazon, with a 41% share of the cloud computing market, is the biggest player.

“They had some very large issues,” said Servaas Verbiest from Sungard Availability Services, a company that provides “disaster recovery” services for multiple cloud platforms. “What makes AWS more exposed is the sheer volume of business they have.”

In Amazon on Tuesday, the unthinkable: grounded delivery drivers can’t load packages and deliver them to customers’ homes, just as the real Christmas rush begins.

Drivers at multiple facilities across the country have been paid to go home. With so little to do, many of them logged onto social media to enjoy the moment while it lasted – some dreaded whatever workload might await. after the system is back up and running.

Amazon did not comment on their delivery disruptions.

Amazon said “weakening of some network equipment” in one of its server regions – US-EAST-1 – was the “root cause” of global network disruptions of connected computers. connected together.

Business Insider Website quote an internal memo detailing the flood of traffic from an “unknown source”. AWS would not comment.

Publicly, the company first recorded the issues at 9:37 a.m. US Pacific time on Tuesday morning, although users of the affected services have been complaining about the problem for a long time. before. By 3 p.m. PT, AWS said it was able to restore most of the service.

Some of the first affected sites appear to have been able to reroute traffic to alternative servers. Whether such an outage creates longer-term problems for companies depends on the extent to which executives have prioritized diversifying cloud providers, Verbiest added. their clouds.

“If you have embraced the ecosystem and you have everything in AWS as the cloud, then you are in a sit-and-wait situation,” he said.

While high outages can be a boon for competitors like Google and Microsoft, Verbiest emphasizes that high conversions are very high.

“It is difficult to say that an outage will cause people to switch to one cloud platform or another, because every cloud provider has an outage. It’s just about their timing and how to deal with them when they happen? ”

In November 2020, the US-EAST-1 region was also the focus of another major AWS outage, affecting many of the same sites that suffered the most recent issues. In that case, the error with the Amazon system called Kinesis is is believed to be the culprit.

This time, according to DownDetector.com, which uses a variety of sources to detect when websites and services are having trouble or fail to load, the affected companies include McDonald’s, a payment service owned by McDonald’s. PayPal Venmo, DoorDash delivery service, and video conferencing. Zoom in on the background.

Disruptions to Amazon Prime Video and Amazon Music are likely to benefit Netflix and Spotify. However, both competitors also use AWS and are similarly affected.

iRobot, the creator of the automatic Roomba vacuum, has apologized to users who were unable to log into the device’s app, making it difficult to start cleaning.

One Roomba owner apparently spoke up on Twitter: “My wife will kill me if the lawyers don’t clean it up before she gets home.”

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