Feeds

EU phone home! Cloudy transatlantic cable coughs, gags, chokes

Cloudflare, DigitalOcean, hit by big problems

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

Updated A major transatlantic cable linking the EU and the US appears to have been cut, causing major problems for cloud operators.

Global frontend security service Cloudflare and huge hoster DigitalOcean both reported significant connectivity problems on Monday as a consequence of a fault in the Telia transatlantic cable.

Most large internet companies route traffic through multiple transit providers, so a single cable going out isn't a fatal problem, but it does tend to cause some short-term disruption, as was the case here.

"Upstream networking issues are causing connectivity issues in Eastern Europe which is affecting multiple US and EU PoPs," CloudFlare wrote on Monday afternoon.

"One of our upstreams (Telia) appears to have a trans-Atlantic cable cut. We're routing around in many EU locations now," the company explained in a subsequent tweet to a miffed user.

Startup web hoster DigitalOcean suffered a network outage in its AMS1 and AMS2 European datacenters.

"Preliminary investigation indicates that Telia Transatlantic cable are down. We are working to resolve the issue and apologize for any interruption this causes for you," the company wrote on its status page.

Akamai_web_monitor

A web monitoring service from content delivery provider Akamai showed global network traffic dipped down two percent while residents of the UK, France, and other European countries settled in for their post-dinner Netflix splurge (pictured).

It's highly likely that the damaged cable is the "TAT-14" cable system, which links the UK, France, the Netherlands, Germany, and Denmark with the US via multiple 10Gbs direct access interfaces.

At the time of writing, Telia's parent company, TeliaSonera, had not responded to a request by El Reg for further information.

Update:

In a tweet, Telia acknowledged the problem.

According to Google's (flawed) translation engine, this reads roughly as: "Our earlier disruption on our internet traffic to the U.S. and Asia has been remedied since 23 o'clock, it was a planned update that went wrong."

Second update:

Cloudflare's chief executive, Matthew Prince, was kind enough to return our call. "It now appears more likely that [Telia] misrouted traffic through to North America," he explained. "The most likely reason would be some kind of routing misalignment."

Cloudflare became aware of a problem when European traffic stopped going to the US via the transatlantic cable and instead "started taking a very circuitous route through Hong Kong," he explained. The problem was fixed by Cloudflare relatively quickly, and he believes Telia dealt with it within an hour or so.

"Whenever one of the big tier one ISPs has an issue it sort of shows the fragility of the internet. I think this was most likely human error," he said. ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud
Just as Jeff Bezos did to books and CDs, Amazon's rivals are now doing to it
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
The triumph of VVOL: Everyone's jumping into bed with VMware
'Bandwagon'? Yes, we're on it and so what, say big dogs
Carbon tax repeal won't see data centre operators cut prices
Rackspace says electricity isn't a major cost, Equinix promises 'no levy'
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.