Feeds

Level 3's UPS burnout sends websites down in flames

London data centre hit by 3.35am scorcher

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

UK sysadmins woke up to a headache this morning after a major power cut at Level 3's data centre in Braham Street, East London, lasted for approximately five hours.

The electrical fault developed at 3.35am, according to an error report seen by The Register, and knocked dozens of companies offline. The facility provides space for server hosting firms and connectivity to the internet's traffic backbone.

From the report it looks as though the failure was caused by a busbar blowing in the Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) system that is supposed to protect computers and network equipment from unexpected electrical failures.

Busbars are strips of copper or aluminium that distribute electricity through the data centre. The fault cut the AC supply, leaving just a DC current to machines. The paperwork states:

04:14 GMT - Field Services advised that a UPS system failure has occurred in the London (Braham), England site. Specifically, the switchboard on the UPS system is supplying DC power to the equipment at the site using commercial power; however, the AC power supply to the equipment is down. Technicians are working on the UPS system to restore AC power to the affected equipment.

05:19 GMT - Power technicians have discovered 4 bus-bars scorched on the UPS system which caused the AC power failure. Presently, the power technicians are collaborating on a work-around to restore AC power to the site.

Technicians worked to restore AC power to the affected equipment, and started to succeed by 7.30am. The power was restored by 9am.

ISP LCHost, whose internet traffic is routed through the Level 3 data centre, was among businesses hit by the outage. In a Facebook post, the company wrote earlier this morning:

There is an outage for all ADSL customers at present due to the power failure in Level 3 Braham Street where our onward connection to BT's network passes through. As a result, ADSL customers will be unable to connect at this time.

Level 3 engineers are working to restore power and in the meantime we are examining options for rerouting the connection in the event that the power restoration cannot be achieved in a reasonable time frame.

The ISP added that its connectivity was back to normal by 8.50am.

We've left messages with Level 3, one of the world's top-tier providers of global internet connectivity, to ask for more details. ®

Updated to add

A Level 3 spokeswoman confirmed the data centre suffered a power outage that was "resolved by the team of on-site power technicians".

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Mighty Blighty broadbanders beg: Let us lay cable in BT's, er, ducts
Complain to Ofcom that telco has 'effective monopoly'
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Driving business with continuous operational intelligence
Introducing an innovative approach offered by ExtraHop for producing continuous operational intelligence.
10 threats to successful enterprise endpoint backup
10 threats to a successful backup including issues with BYOD, slow backups and ineffective security.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?