September 09, 2011

MSN Fights to Come Back to Life after Global Outage


MSN websites decided to go to sleep a little bit earlier last night, and by 9 p.m. all MSN websites around the world were down and had been down since 8:30 PT. These sties included Microsoft (News - Alert) services such as Office 365, SkyDrive and Hotmail. It is unknown at this time what has caused the global outage.

Since last night, MSN has been issuing a series of “I’m sorry’s” on its MSN Twitter feed, starting with a post at 8:50 p.m. PT on September 8 that read “We’re currently experiencing an outage at www.msn.com We’re aware of the issue and working to resolve it. Thanks for your patience.”

Poor MSN had to deal with a lot of backlash last night as well, mostly from individuals complaining that they couldn’t access their Hotmail accounts.

MSN’s response: “It’s totally inconvenient and we’re working to resolve it as fast as we can. sorry about this.”

“We’re working to find out why. this is an unusually long outage for us. sorry,” said another Twitter (News - Alert) post from the company.

Similar backlash ensued last year when Hotmail ironically experienced an outage that lasted anywhere from one to seven hours just hours after Facebook (News - Alert) launched its new messaging service, which many experts at the time described as an “email killer.” The outage in 2010 was caused to maintenance-related issues, according to Hotmail officials.

"I have been trying to log-in to my inbox for 7 hours," wrote one frustrated user on the Erictric comment page at the time. "Same maintenance message every time! This is ridiculous!"

This time around, by 9:30 p.m. PT things appeared to be improving as Hotmail seemed to be working again, however, the company is still working on its other MSN websites.

With the reason for the outage still unknown, MSN said it could “take hours to determine the root issue.”

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Carrie Schmelkin is a Web Editor for TMCnet. Previously, she worked as Assistant Editor at the New Canaan Advertiser, a 102-year-old weekly newspaper, covering news and enhancing the publication's social media initiatives. Carrie holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and a bachelor's degree in English from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves
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