Feeds

Fasthosts martyrs relive email FAIL (again and again)

'We apologise unreservedly'

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Fasthosts email customers endured (yet another) outage this morning, thanks to a glitch in the company's BlueArc storage system.

The UK webhost - which has made a habit of such outages in recent months - says its network was plagued by a "performance issue" between 8:15am and 10:10am GMT.

One customer tells The Reg his email access returned at around 10:10. "For myself, it's a frustration with the regularity and the fallout (as a reseller customer) of spending time on the phone with no solid information to back me up with RE time to resolution," he says.

A second subscriber howls that his service was unavailable for at least four hours. "I am a business customer so loss of email is critical," he says. "I had submitted a technical support request via their support email address which was not responded to."

In an email statement sent to The Reg, Fasthosts says that a problem with its BlueArc storage solution "resulted in intermittent access for some of our customers." But both customers speaking with The Reg indicate the outage was complete - not intermittent.

"This morning we experienced a performance issue on our email platform which resulted in intermittent access for some of our customers," the company's statement reads. "The issue occurred around 8:15am GMT and lasted up to a maximum time of 10:10am GMT, though services were restored more quickly than this for most customers...

"We have added additional capacity and monitoring for our mail services since the last BlueArc related outage and we are awaiting the permanent firmware fixes from BlueArc."

On November 24, customers were without email access for the better part of a day, and in a subsequent email to customers, Fasthosts said the problems involved its BlueArc storage. "The issue with the BlueArc Storage system was escalated to BlueArc engineering immediately and root cause was identified as a previously unseen firmware bug," the email read.

The email went on to say that BlueArc was actively developing a "formal" patch for the bug "to ensure that this situation does not re-occur." According to the email, dated November 26, BlueArc was set to test and deploy the updated software "over the coming days."

The email also included an apology from a BlueArc senior VP.

As it did today, Fasthosts described the November 24 outage as "intermittent." But countless customers speaking with The Reg disputed that characterization.

"Whats going on with Fasthosts, Used to be reliable, now days completely unreliable, must have been down now 5 or 6 times in the last month!" one user told us in the midst of the November 24 outage. Another said he endured additional outages on November 2, 9, 10, and 16.

The Reg reported on a major weekend outage in early June, and multiple readers have complained of similar outages on August 26, October 12, and November 16.

"We are currently making significant investments in technology and services to ensure our new email platform has the highest levels of availability moving forward," reads today's Fasthosts statement. "We apologise unreservedly for any disruption to our customers in this period this morning. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
Trans-Pacific: Google spaffs cash on FAST undersea packet-flinging
One of 6 backers for new 60 Tbps cable to hook US to Japan
Tech city types developing 'Google Glass for the blind' app
An app and service where other people 'see' for you
UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom
Regulator swallows this line and parrots it back out at us. What are they playing at?
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.