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Amazon AWS downtime shakes faith in the cloud

Mat Bettinson
Amazon AWS downtime shakes faith in the cloud

Amazon's AWS cloud computing platform has suffered extended downtime, calling into question the reliability of cloud services.

The troubles began when a data center in Virginia went down, affecting a number of major web sites and businesses including Q&A site Quora and social gaming outfit Foursquare.

IDC research analyst Matthew Eastwood told the New York Times that the disruption was a "wake-up call for cloud computing," and that it would "force a conversation in the industry."

Some Amazon customers were angered not only by the down time but what they perceived as a lack of transparency from Amazon around the technical issues.

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BigDoor CEO Keith Smith said: "Amazon’s updates read as if they were written by their attorneys and accountants who were hedging against their stated SLA rather than being written by a tech guy trying to help another tech guy."

Rival cloud computing platforms were quick to jump on the firm's woes with Joyeur technology chief Jason Hoffman saying that the Amazon outage was not a "speed bump" or the result of "growing pains" but a "foreseeable consequence of fundamental architectural decisions made by Amazon."

Tags: Amazon, cloud computing, downtime

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