Earlier this week, February 28 to be exact, an Amazon Web Services outage took out the internet for a large customer base on the east coast of the United States. If you’re one of many wondering why your Giphy, Medium, Slack, Quora, Canary, or other websites including Amazon.com and services were down, the Seattle-based company has released a statement blaming the problem on a typo. Amazon explains that a technician was attempting to fix an issue with its Simple Storage Service (S3) servers by taking some billing servers offline per the company’s guideline book. “Unfortunately, one of the inputs to the command was entered incorrectly and a larger set of servers was removed than intended.”
Two important S3 subsystems were taken down and a full restart required a lengthy amount of time because “we have not completely restarted the index subsystem or the placement subsystem in our larger regions for many years.” Amazon apologized at the end of the statement and promised that they “will do everything we can to learn from this event and use it to improve our availability even further.”
With the launch of its robot supermarkets, we can only hope that Amazon has gotten the issue under control and that it doesn’t happen again in the future.