GeorgeWBush.com Reopens to Rest of World

The GeorgeWBush.com web site is again accessible to web users outside the United States and Canada, with access having been restored on Saturday. The official campaign site for Bush's election campaign began restricting access on Oct. 25, citing unspecified security concerns. Bush defeated John Kerry in the U.S. vote Nov. 2, but the site restrictions continued for another five days beyond the election.

Georgewbush.com web site performance

A dynamically updating chart of site performance for GeorgeWBush.com is available here.

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Extended Outage for Komplex Hosting

The main web site for Komplex.net was offline for nearly an entire day before returning to service Monday, an unusual outage for a hosting company that had the Internet's most reliable hosting site in March of this year, and was also among the performance leaders for April. The German provider houses more than 307K hostnames and 138K active sites.

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A dynamically updating graph is available here.

Mirrors Help Electoral-vote.com Blunt DDoS Attacks

Electoral-vote.com, a leading source of data on the American presidential race, reports having been hit by distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks yesterday and today, which is election day in the U.S.

The site, which tracks state-by-state polling data to project the outcome of the presidential race, is operated by academic Andrew Tanenbaum, the author of the Minix microkernel. Minix was used by Linus Torvalds as he began to write the Linux operating system.

Tanenbaum reported that the electoral-vote.com site was "subjected to (a) massive attack yesterday (Monday)," he writes. "There was another attack this morning and that took some time to deal with. Remember that if the site is unreachable, try the backup sites." To accommodate the traffic, Tanenbaum worked with site host HostRocket to set up six mirrors, www.electoral-vote3.com through www.electoral-vote8.com. "At one point I was tempted to say: 'How many 2-GB Pentium 4's do you have left and can I have them all?'," Tanenbaum says. "Ultimately I took only one more, but with help from some kind-hearted colleagues, I got mirrors up and running from Boston to San Diego."

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Most Reliable Hosting Providers during October

Ranking by Failed Requests and Connection time,
October 1st - 31st 2004

Hoster Performance October 04

During October all of the sites monitored experienced some failed requests, with iPowerweb and INetU the most reliable sites during the period.

Five of the top ten sites were running BSD based operating systems.

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Outage for Al-Jazeera English Site

The English language version of the Al-Jazeera web site was offline for more than five hours last night, two days after the Qatar-based television network broadcast videotape of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.

Attempts to access english.aljazeera.net returned a "504 Gateway Timeout" message from the site's web host, AT&T WorldNet Services. "The web site you are attempting to access is currently unreachable," the message states. "This may be due to a network outage, or the web site might be experiencing technical difficulties."

Al-Jazeera (English) site performance

A dynamically updating performance chart for english.aljazeera.net is available here.

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Campaign cites “security reasons” for blocking access to Bush site

A campaign spokesman acknowledged that the official site of the Bush-Cheney campaign has been rejecting requests from outside North America since Monday morning. "The measure was taken for security reasons," campaign spokesman Scott Stanzel told news services, but did not elaborate on that statement.

A dynamically updating chart of site performance for GeorgeWBush.com from different points is available here.

Surprisingly, none of the coverage that we have seen to date has considered the possibility that it might be a well executed scheme aimed at increasing international awareness of the site.

The “calculated indifference ploy”, has previously been popularised by the fictional character Reginald Perrin, commercialised by the publishing industry who adopted the moto “If you want to sell a book, first get it banned”, and deployed by generations of parents who learned “If you really want to get something done, deny your children permission to do it”.

Many thousands of people living outside the US who were previously unaware of the site are now earnestly seeking out ways of accessing it.

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