Outages for MediaTemple Grid Hosting Service

Customers of MediaTemple's GridServer, which received widespread attention upon its debut last month, experienced significant downtime Tuesday. GridServer is among the many cluster-based grid hosting services, offering the promise of enterprise-level reliability and scalability in an affordable web hosting plan.

GridServer got a big boost when its launch was featured on TechCrunch, a leading technology blog. On Tuesday, bloggers who were among the early adopters to GridServer were airing their grievances as their sites were slowed by performance problems. MediaTemple provided regular updates on its efforts to stabilize the system, citing bugs in a third-party storage system as the cause for the outages and sluggishness. The performance problems began at 10 a.m. Pacific time and continued past 5 p.m. for some customers.

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Amazon’s Alexa Hit By Performance Problems

Alexa, the search portal operated by Amazon.com, is experiencing significant performance problems today, with outages and delays seen from all of our monitoring points. In addition to basic search, Alexa provides data on the popularity of web sites visited by users of its toolbar (Note: Netcraft provides a similar service).

The performance issues for Alexa come as Amazon is pursuing an aggressive expansion into the utility hosting business, leasing its infrastructure to third-parties to provide scalable storage and hosting. Amazon's hosting initiative received considerable media coverage tied to CEO Jeff Bezos' presentation at last week's Web 2.0 conference.

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A dynamically updating chart of the performance of Alexa.com is available. Netcraft offers a web site performance monitoring service that provides detailed uptime charts, along with e-mail alerts when an outage occurs.

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Lieberman Web Site Faces Election Day Test

As U.S. voters go to the polls for a mid-term election likely to decide control of both houses of Congress, analysts say voter turnout will be a critical factor. Political web sites are key tools in this effort - provided they can stay online.

Hosting uptime became a contentious issue in Connecticut's primary election in August, as the campaign web site for veteran Sen. Joseph Lieberman was completely unavailable on election day. Lieberman, the Democrats' 2000 vice presidential candidate, was defeated by challenger Ned Lamont. Afterward, Lieberman's campaign manager blamed the Lamont camp for the outage, alleging "coordinated efforts to disable our Web site." Other analysts said the Lieberman campaign had likely exceeded the bandwidth allotment on its shared hosting account at MyHostCamp.com.

Lieberman is back, running as an independent, and has a new web host as well. The Joe2006.com site is now hosted by Web.com, and is performing well through midday:

Joe2006.com web site performance

A dynamically updating chart of the performance of Joe2006.com is available. Netcraft offers a web site performance monitoring service that provides detailed uptime charts, along with e-mail alerts when an outage occurs.

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Rackspace and Tiscali Most Reliable Hosters in October

Ranking by Failed Requests and Connection time,
October 1st - 31st 2006

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Rackspace and Tiscali are the most reliable hosting companies for October 2006, followed closely by Jumpline, WestHost, the UK's Demon Internet and Germany's Deutsche Telekom. Jumpline is based in Columbus, Ohio and focuses on the virtual dedicated server market, while WestHost is a Utah provider offering shared hosting.

Industry-leading reliability has become business as usual for Rackspace, a managed hosting specialist based in San Antonio, Texas, which finishes atop our monthly survey for the sixth time in 2006. Tiscali, an Italian company providing a broad range of hosting and domain services, was previously the most reliable host in May of this year and August 2005.

Five of the 10 most reliable hosters run their sites on Linux, while three use Solaris, two run on FreeBSD, and Windows hosts are shut out of the top 10 this month. The strong showing for Solaris includes two hosts (Demon, Deutsche Telekom) running Solaris 9/10 and one (Verio) on Solaris 8.

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Paypal Remains Online Despite Explosion

An explosion at online payment processor Paypal caused property damage, but resulted in no injuries. The company's web site, one of the Internet's busiest e-commerce sites, remained online throughout the incident.

The explosion Tuesday night at Paypal's network operations center in San Jose shattered a window and forced the evacuation of 26 employees, according to local media reports. Law enforcement officials said they "have suspicions" about what may have caused the blast, but did not detail them. The investigation team included members of the local police bomb squad.

paypal.com site performance

A dynamically updating chart of the performance of Paypal.com is available here. Netcraft offers a web site performance monitoring service that provides detailed uptime charts, along with e-mail alerts when an outage occurs.

Extended Downtime for Mosso

Grid hosting providers may offer advantages over dedicated servers, but they're not immune to downtime. Mosso, a utility computing start-up launched earlier this year with backing from Rackspace, has experienced a significant outage today. The mosso.com web site was offline for more than an hour this morning after a series of shorter outages yesterday.

Mosso uses a "hosting system" of clusters of servers, an approach initially seen in enterprise hosting, which can offer advantages in redundancy and performance. The company is one of a growing number of hosting providers moving to grid hosting as an alternative to discount dedicated servers, which have been enormously popular with hosting resellers and power users. Improved reliability is among the key selling points for grid systems.

mosso.com site performance

A dynamically updating chart of the performance of the Mosso.com is available. Netcraft offers a web site performance monitoring service that provides detailed uptime charts, along with e-mail alerts when an outage occurs.