Amazon cloud outage downs popular websites

09:19, April 22, 2011      

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Several popular social networking websites have been out of service since Thursday morning due to an unexplained outage of Amazon's cloud web hosting service.

According to the Service Health Dashboard of Amazon's "Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2)," errors began at 1:41 a.m. PDT in its datacenter in northern Virginia, saying "instance connectivity, latency and error rates."

Several popular websites, including popular social networking sites like Reddit, Quora, Foursquare, and HootSuite, have been remaining offline. Reddit, a social news website, said it is in " emergency ready-only mode because Amazon is experiencing a degradation."

Foursquare, a location-based social networking website, said on its homepage that "Our usually-amazing datacenter host, Amazon EC2, are having a few hiccups this morning." and "Everything looks to be getting back to normal now."

"The sky is falling! Amazon's cloud seems to be down (raining?) so we're experiencing some issues too. Be back soon." said SCVNGR, a social location-based gaming platform for mobile phones, on its Twitter page.

Amazon have not commented on the disruption yet. Analysts said the outage highlights risks of relying on public cloud service.

EC2 is a central part of Amazon's cloud computing platform Amazon Web Services. It allows users to rent virtual computers on which to run their own computer applications. The European Space Agency, PBS and Ericsson are all among its cloud service customers.

Source: Xinhua
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