Netflix Faces Downtime Just Prior to Christmas Eve

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UPDATE: Netflix is up and running again! Very agile customer support. Here is wishing everyone a wonderful holiday!

Netflix, one of the most popular movie streaming websites faced downtime just prior to christmas eve. This was confirmed by the company via Twitter. Netflix says the downtime was caused by service interruptions to Amazon Web Services.

Netflix users reported not being able to access the service this afternoon, with Netflix offering apologies via Twitter, writing “We’re sorry for the Christmas Eve outage. Terrible timing! Engineers are working on it now” at about 7:30 p.m. Eastern time.

According to Netflix Engineer Adrian Cockcroft, posting on Twitter, the service was working for some users on some devices, but was unavailable for others.  “Bunch of ELBs down,” wrote Cockcroft, at about 7:30 p.m., “lots of happy Netflix instances getting no traffic, still waiting for AWS to fix it. Some devices working, others not.”

Earlier in the day, Amazon reported disruptions to the Elastic Load Balancer functions in its Northern Virgina EC2 location, writing on Twitter, “We’re currently investigating issues relating to ELB and Beanstalk API calls in US-EAST-1.”

The AWS status page has been updating on the issue all day, most recently (at 7:15 p.m. Eastern) reporting, “We continue to experience increased errors for Elastic Load Balancing API calls in the US-EAST-1 region and continue to work towards resolution. This issue is impacting traffic for existing ELBs. New ELBs are provisioning correctly. The ELB APIs continue to report outdated or incomplete information such as not reporting listeners or marking the ELB as out of service for calls to DescribeLoadBalancers.”

Netflix has had some success weathering Amazon Web Services Outages in the past, because of engineering work the company has done building its architecture to withstand this kind of thing. In July this year, Netflix open-sourced a testing tool it developed, called Chaos Monkey, which tested the resilience of the company’s architecture by turning off EC2 instances.

Evidently, Monday’s outage was not something that was anticipated by Chaos Monkey.

No reports yet of other major services impacted by the outage. Netflix appears to be working fine from a web browser here in Jaipur, India.

Meanwhile, if you’re one of the concerned movie-buffs, you can stay updated here.



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