OVH data centres go down, hours of downtime ensue
Fri 10 Nov 2017
Customers of the world’s third largest hosting firm, OVH, have suffered hours of downtime after the French firm struggled with a power outage at one data centre and a software issue at another.
The company started having issues at around 7 am British time, with complaints being filed to outage tracking website downdetector at that time.
An official statement posted on Twitter by OVH CEO Octave Klaba stated that the problems were caused by an electrical problem at the company’s Strasbourg site and a problem ‘on the optical network’ in its Roubaix site.
At the time of posting, around midday, Klaba said: ‘In Strasbourg…power has been restored and services are being restarted. Some customers are up and others are not. If your service is not up yet, the recovery time is between five minutes and three to four hours.’
The software issue in Roubaix related to the company’s interconnection points. The network that allows the Roubaix facility to be connected to these points in Paris, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, London and Brussels had a problem, causing the downtime.
Klaba’s statement made it clear that the two issues were not connected, though many online questioned this, with one Twitter user, @tgabber, saying: ‘Two major incidents which were unconnected but just happened to occur at the same time? Pull the other one.’
In the statement, Klaba said he was ‘sincerely sorry.’ This seems to have done little to appease customers who have suffered downtime as a result of the problems. Many took to Twitter to vent their anger, with the hashtags #OVHdown and #OVHgate together being seen by more than two million people at the time of writing.
A later statement outlined the source of the problems in more detail, with Klaba accepting that the company made two major mistakes – the first being that the Strasbourg site did not adhere to internal compliance standards which require two separate electrical feeds, and secondly that both the SBG1 and SBG2 sites did not operate from an independent power supply.
OVH has three data centres in operation in Strasbourg, with one more in construction. In its hometown of Roubaix, the firm has seven data centres in operation. Its website states that one million customers around the world use its services.