Amazon Cloud Outage Caused by ‘Cable Fault’

(Ping! Zine Web Tech Magazine) – A “cable fault” was recently to blame for a major outage that temporarily brought down web presences relying on popular cloud platform Amazon Web Services. The company recently detailed the incident through a status report.

According to tech site ZDNet, one of the most major web solutions to be interrupted by the fault included popular cloud storage solution DropBox.  Popular Q&A provider Quora was also included among the websites, according to the same report.

“At approximately 8:44PM PDT, there was a cable fault in the high voltage Utility power distribution system.  Two Utility substations that feed the impacted Availability Zone went offline, causing the entire Availability Zone to fail over to generator power. All EC2 instances and EBS volumes successfully transferred to back-up generator power,” explained Amazon Web Services in its report.

However, things didn’t end with a successful transfer due to the fault. Problems continued as a defective cooling fan caused a key backup generator to overheat. Another contributing factor included an improperly configured distribution circuit.

Things finally began to look up when Amazon successfully fixed the faulty generator fan, eventually restoring services. Specifically affected in the incident was Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2). AWS has faced other major outages in the past. In August of last year, a technical glitch at the company’s Dublin, Ireland data center caused similar problems.