Telewest email down for four days

Underlying hardware failure blamed

Telewest punters have been left fuming after the cableco's email service went titsup following a spam attack last Thursday.

At the time Telewest said the average delay in receiving email would be around two hours, although a small proportion of punters faced delays of up to five hours.

But customers of Telewest's blueyonder ISP told The Register that the service went on the blink for three or four days and was out of action most of the weekend.

One reader told us: "Blueyonder was right to say that only a minority of customers experience delays of five hours. The majority has been experiencing delays of days."

At one point Telewest even suspended the whole service in a bid to resolve the problem.

Although this latest meltdown was sparked off by Thursday morning's spam attack - the second such attack in a week- Telewest has now admitted an underlying hardware failure was to blame for the extended delays in punters receiving email.

In a statement Telewest's director of internet services, Chad Raube, said: "We feel as disappointed with the delays as our customers do and we have been making every effort to filter the backlog of emails, which we now estimate contains 90 per cent spam, as quickly as possible.

"New emails are now being delivered as normal and we hope that any remaining mails will be delivered today, but we offer our sincere apologies to those customers affected over the past few days," he said.

Telewest is now planning a major migration of it email platform, to a "new, more stable one". That's expected to happen over the next couple of weeks.

Unfortunately for Telewest, this latest incident is likely to take some of the shine off today's formal launch of its 2Mb broadband service. ®

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