Fastly blames software bug for internet meltdown
A major internet blackout that hit many high-profile websites
on Tuesday has been blamed on a software bug.
Fastly, the cloud-computing company responsible for the issues,
said the bug had been triggered when one
of its customers had changed their settings.
The outage has raised questions about relying on a handful of
companies to run the vast infrastructure that underpins the internet.
Fastly apologized and said the problem should have been anticipated.
The outage, which lasted about an hour, hit some popular websites
such as Amazon, Reddit, the Guardian and the New York Times.
Fastly senior engineering executive Nick Rockwell said:
“This outage was broad and severe – and we’re truly sorry for
the impact to our customers and everyone who relies on them.”
The company operates servers at strategic points around the world
to help customers move and store content close to their end users.
But a customer changing their settings had exposed a bug in
a software update issued to customers in mid-May,
causing “85% of our network to return errors”, it said.
Engineers had worked out the cause of the problem about 40 minutes
after websites had gone offline at about 11:00 BST, Fastly said.
“Within 49 minutes, 95% of our network was operating as normal,” it said.
The company has deployed a bug fix across its network and promised a
“post mortem of the processes and practices we followed during
this incident” and to “figure out why we didn’t detect the bug during
our software quality assurance and testing processes”.