A server fault in an Amazon data center in Virginia earlier this morning took down many Amazon services and many popular websites. Amazon Web Services is the Amazon division responsible for hosting web and mobile apps. It's distributed across multiple locations, and supports websites all over the world.
And it crashed hard on Sunday. There are numerous reports on Twitter that a surprising number of web services ranging from Netflix to Medium and Nest to Buffer and Pocket all became unavailable on Sunday morning.
The Sunday morning crash also shut down Echo, Amazon Instant Video, the retail functions of Amazon.com, IMDb, Createspace, Mayday, and the Kindle Store were all affected.
Len Edgerly of The Kindle Chronicles reported several of the downed services on Twitter this morning. He said that he couldn't order a Fire tablet, or use his Fire Stick to stream video (curiously, I had no trouble with Amazon Video during that period).
For the most part only customers in the Northeastern US were affected, but I also have reports from Germany that the Kindle Store on Amazon.de was down, and so was Createspace. Another German Amazon customer reported that her Fire Stick stopped functioning at about the same time.
According to The Independent, other affected services include Tinder, Product Hunt, SocialFlow, GroupMe, Viber, and Mediacom.
Far more services were affected in the Sunday morning crash than the last time AWS crashed, in 2013. Techcrunch reported at the time that the crash took IFTTT, AirBnB, Vine, Netflix, and Instagram offline.
That 2013 crash also happened on a Sunday, and it also involved an Amazon data center in Virginia. That crash lasted less than two hours before most of the services were back online.
Today's crash ran past the four-hour mark before Amazon's services were restored, and according to the AWS Health Dashboard the system is operating normally again.
image by versageek