Microsoft Azure thrown out of gear during a performance update

Microsoft detailed the cause of Azure service interruptions that continued through Wednesday for some customers

A service interruption on Azure storage services late Tuesday was caused by Microsoft's attempts to roll out a performance update that had been earlier tested for several weeks.

An issue was discovered as part of the update to Azure Storage that resulted in reduced capacity across services using Azure Storage, including Virtual Machines, Visual Studio Online, Websites, Search and other Microsoft services, wrote Jason Zander, corporate vice president of the Microsoft Azure team in a blog post Wednesday.

The interruption impacted storage services across the U.S., Europe and parts of Asia. A limited subset of customers were still affected by intermittent issues on Wednesday, according to the company. On the Azure status page, Microsoft was still reporting problems in the West Europe region on Wednesday evening.

The company had tested the performance update in a subset of its customer-facing storage service for Azure Tables, a process known as 'flighting,' when the company identifies issues before broad deployment of an update.

"During the rollout we discovered an issue that resulted in storage blob front ends going into an infinite loop, which had gone undetected during flighting," wrote Zander. The front ends were as a result unable to handle further traffic, which affected other services built on top, he added.

The change was rolled back once the issue was discovered but a restart of the storage front ends was required in order to fully undo the update, according to Zander.

The blog will be updated with a root cause analysis "to ensure customers understand how we have addressed the issue and the improvements we will make going forward," Zander said. Customers are currently being assisted by both engineering and support teams.

Interruptions like the one starting Tuesday are likely to affect Microsoft's pitch that it is easier to rent computer capacity in the cloud rather than set up systems in-house. A number of websites of businesses and Microsoft's own Xbox Live were hit in the interruption this week, according to reports.

Users complained that the rollout of the update should have been done in stages rather than across all regions at one go. The Microsoft Azure team admitted that it had not followed the standard protocol of applying production changes in incremental batches. One person commented on the Azure blog that as a result of the outage, her company had decided to move all its sites to rival Amazon Web Services.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Microsoftcloud computinginternet

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?