On Thursday morning, reporters received several e-mails from readers complaining that they could not reach many Microsoft sites. In addition, Keynote Systems, a company that measures the performance of Web sites, reported that Microsoft's sites were once again largely unreachable.
"It appears that they don't have their problems under control," said Dan Todd, chief technologist for Keynote's public services division. "They are having problems that mirror what was going on yesterday, though not as severe."
Microsoft representatives were unavailable to comment Thursday morning.
Microsoft's woes began at 6:30 p.m. PST Tuesday and effectively blocked access to some of the Internet's most popular Web sites, including Microsoft.com, MSN.com, WindowsMedia.com, Encarta.com, Carpoint.com, and Expedia.com, a company spokesman said. Hotmail.com also was largely inaccessible, although Microsoft would not confirm whether the free e-mail service was affected by the same problem that severed access to other sites.
The problem lingered until about 5 p.m. PST Wednesday, when Microsoft (msft) claimed it had repaired an error by its own technicians and that its sites were back online.
However, according to Keynote's data, Web page requests Thursday morning to the Microsoft Network languished at anywhere from a 1.5 percent success rate to around 60 percent.
The picture for Microsoft's main site, Microsoft.com, appeared to be a bit better, with about 70 percent of all requests for pages going through.
Normally, the site is able to fulfill 97 percent of all page requests, Todd said.
Throughout the morning, reporters continued to receive complaints from irate Microsoft customers and Web users who claimed that access to the giant's sites remained intermittent at best.
"While Microsoft was up at about (6 a.m. PST), it seems to be out again," wrote Robert McNay of Chicago. Many other readers reported a similar inability to connect to the software giant's major sites.
While Microsoft's own site, Microsoft.com, and Hotmail.com both seemed to be accessible, attempts to access MSN.com, Expedia.com, Carpoint.com, and Encarta.com went unanswered.