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Storm Clouds in the Amazon Cloud Create Cloudy Days for Many

Author: Mark Dixon
Friday, April 22, 2011
12:33 pm

As failures in Amazon’s Cloud Services (reported by Data Center Knowledge) extend into a second day, multiple companies are feeling the pain:

Among the most prominent companies affected were Foursquare, Quora, Hootsuite, SCVNGR, Heroku, Reddit and Wildfire, though hundreds of other companies big and small were affected. Luckily, one of Amazon’s most prominent customers, Netflix, didn’t experience problems because it’s built for the loss of an entire data center, while companies relying on Amazon’s four other global data centers didn’t experience too many issues. (from Mashable)

I suppose the first lesson we learn is that if you bet your business on the cloud, your fortunes are tied to that cloud.  Consider Foursquare’s announcement:

Even though they pointed out that Amazon EC2 was to blame, it was Foursquare’s reputation that took the first hit.

The second lesson?  Don’t be deceived by lots of good news.  All the green checkmarks on Amazon’s history dashboard mean little if you are affected by the red outage symbols:

The third lesson?  Cloud computing is not a panacea.  With all its promises, we must also consider its vulnerabilities.  Technology does break down.  We must be prepared for that inevitability.  Disaster recovery and business continuity principles still apply.


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