With increasing reliance on the cloud, and in many cases on a single cloud service provider, the probability for a widespread (though infrequent) outage grows. On Tuesday, AWS S3 storage experienced a major outage, taking down the back-ends of many sites that include Netflix, Slack, and HubSpot, two of which we use at Cavirin. For enterprises that were single threaded, they just had to wait it out, and though the actual outage lasted only 4 hours, it took the remainder of the day for many to recover. To give you an idea of the magnitude of the impact, AWS S3 supports over 150K sites and upwards of three trillion data elements. Thousands of tweets were questioning if the Internet went down, just like last October with the Mirai outage. Compounding the problem is that the storage service is shared across multiple AWS zones, and though an enterprise may distribute compute across geographies, due to practical or cost reasons they may depend upon a single storage instance.
- Ravi Rajamiyer