Amazon’s EC2 Outage: A Closer LookAmazon’s EC2 Outage: A Closer Look

On Christmas Eve, Amazon Web services experienced an outage at its Northern Virginia data center. In a prompt follow up, it issued an explanation on Dec. 29, apologized to customers and said it wouldn’t happen again. It was the fourth outage of the year in its most heavily trafficked data center complex.

Explanations in the press of what happened, based on were relatively brief. The Wall Street Journal, for example, stated that Amazon spokesmen blamed the outageF

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“on a developer who accidentally deleted some key data … Amazon said the disruption affected its Elastic Load Balancing Service, which distributes incoming data from applications to be handled by different computing hardware.”

To an IT manager thinking of using zaltv Amazon, that leaves as much unexplained as explained. A developer disrupted running production systems? Development and production are kept distinctly separate in enterprise data centers for exactly the reason demonstrated in the Dec. 24 outage. The developer, Amazon took pains to explain, was “one of a very small number of developers who have access to this production environment.” Amazon is a large organization with many developers; how many developers had access?

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