Amazon Cloud AWS Outage Sent Many Websites and Apps Offline

Anyone trying to access certain websites in the US yesterday afternoon was likely feeling the effects of the outage at one of the largest cloud hosting service providers: Amazon. A failure of the AWS cloud turned off the lights at many sites.

Shortly after 8 p.m. German time, the problems at Amazon Web Services (AWS), the largest cloud hoster in the world, began. Within the next three to four hours, tens of thousands of messages were left by affected users at DownDetector, according to which AWS had a problem.

Mass web offerings and services affected

There has been a flood of complaints on social media from companies that also rely on AWS. Netflix and Disney+, the fast food chains McDonald’s, Taco Bell, and Burger King as well as various online media were affected. In the meantime, the New York transport company has also reported that its web-based offers are temporarily unavailable because there was a failure at Amazon Web Services.

Some customers also reported that their smart speakers and other smart home devices from Amazon were no longer working as usual, which is why air conditioning systems, for example, could no longer be controlled properly. According to reports from users, Twitch and the online gaming platform from Nintendo also no longer worked properly.

‘Capacity Management’ Issues in Virginia data center

As Amazon now announces on its status portal for the AWS cloud, “increased error rates” were recorded for several hours. The “US-EAST-1” region was affected. This refers to the group’s data centers in the US state of Virginia. There were apparently difficulties with “capacity management”.

As a result, the problems apparently made waves through the US group’s network of data centers, which is why it could also have had an impact on users outside the affected region. Specifically, the problems manifested themselves in the fact that an error message was displayed when accessing websites and services from AWS customers.

Because AWS is used by a variety of companies and services to ensure the reliable availability of web offerings, the number of end users who felt the effects of yesterday’s outage in one way or another was also large. It ultimately took almost five hours before Amazon was able to offer its cloud services again in the usual form.

Another problem was that many customers who use AWS for their own web offerings did not have access to the management tools because the log-in was also disrupted. In addition, Amazon could not process calls from chats with support requests.

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