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O2 coughs to data failure

Dodgy DHCP leaves users IP-free

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O2 has admitted a major failure of its data network yesterday, attributing the problem to dodgy DHCP service that wasn't giving punters a proper IP address during the connection process.

The problem didn't hit every O2 customer, but many were affected. O2 assures us that almost everyone is back on the net now, and that engineers are working hard to connect the last few.

A lot of Reg readers certainly had problems, and it's indicative of the reliability of mobile data that most of them tried rebooting their phones and waving the aerial around before giving up to try again half an hour later. When voice services fail the assumption is that the network's on the fritz, but when data fails the assumption is of a local problem that will probably go away in a bit.

This time around it was IP allocation, as handled by the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, which apparently wasn't working as intended. "We have identified the cause of the fault, which relates to the allocation of IP (Internet Protocol) addresses needed to establish a data connection," it said.

We're trying to get more details of what went wrong where, but anyone desperately trying to get connected might try a different APN (some people have had success using "idata.o2.co.uk") or just wait until O2 fixes things - it's not as though mobile data is mission critical. ®

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