WebCentral suffers lengthy outage

WebCentral suffers lengthy outage

Summary: Melbourne IT today admitted websites belonging to a number of customers of its WebCentral brand went down over the weekend, following a data corruption issue in its storage systems.

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Melbourne IT today admitted websites belonging to a number of customers of its WebCentral brand went down over the weekend, following a data corruption issue in its storage systems.

Customers had been complaining online about the issue since Friday morning, with updates to the problem being posted online over the weekend. "This is a major, major issue for our business," wrote one aggrieved customer on broadband information site Whirlpool.

"WebCentral, a brand of the Melbourne IT Group, reported today that it had experienced data corruption in one of its shared storage devices on Friday 20 March and that the cause of the incident was resolved on Saturday," the company said in a statement this afternoon.

"Due to redundancy within the storage systems, the problem was isolated and impacted a small percentage of the customer base."

Melbourne IT's main storage vendor is IBM, although the domain and hosting company didn't mention Big Blue in its statement, saying only that supporting vendors had responded proactively and quickly to address the problem.

"The company confirmed that the recovery process is in progress and that customers had been restored over the weekend," Melbourne IT's statement said. "Secondary effects of server corruption have been identified and are being resolved."

Topics: IBM, Storage, Enterprise 2.0, Tech Industry

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10 comments
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  • Fixed?

    At least they fixed it on Saturday. Seems reasonable. How does this relate to this article?

    http://www.zdnet.com.au/insight/hardware/soa/Managing-data-at-Melbourne-IT/0,139023759,339292389,00.htm

    Sounds like someone has some explaining to do to the clients though.
    anonymous
  • Not really

    My site went down Friday early morning, around 6am. It came back up midnight Saturday, 42 hours later. The data restored was from Tuesday night, not Thursday night as you would expect. Site stayed up till Monday midnight, where it went down for a further 10 hours, and then again the data was last Tuesdays.
    2 outages and data a week old.
    anonymous
  • Dodged a bullet

    We recently moved all our web-hosting off WebCentral so really felt like we had dodged a bullet when this latest crash happened.

    Last year we had 9-days downtime and no restitution from them. The year before that 5-days. There are many other providers offering world-class service. WebCentral is no longer an option.
    anonymous
  • PR spin

    The story is a "nice" report of Webcentral's state and factually wrong.

    Service was NOT working on Friday, Saturday, Sunday, intermittently on Monday and not actually working without problems till Tuesday.

    The non-provision of service had started at 3 am on Friday morning according to Web Central's own staff and then just continued.

    Until Tuesday, the front-line tech staff consistently said had no idea what was wrong or when it would be fixed. It was finally up and working on Tuesday.

    In terms of numbers affected, on the server we share with (reportedly) 100-200 other sites, all sites were reportedly out and unavailable and the front line tech staff indicated the problem was more widespread than just the one server.

    We suspect the "nice" story from Melbourne IT was more a PR spin to minimise the reputation damage from a major problem affecting customers and suggests Web Central currently lacks a rapid disaster recovery capability.

    Web central have offered no reparations for the four days lack of service. Its front line tech staff advised there could still be ongoing interruptions while Web central further tested the repaired system.

    Customers were not invited to reload their sites on other working servers, to allow customers to maintain their sites' availability.

    Overall, the "nice" summary does not reflect the impediment that the lack of service caused Web central's customers. Job advices (until Tuesday, and after the service had been restored) were only supplied in response to queries about the lack of service and did not explain what was happening or why, merely that the problem was being worked on.

    The overall was far more damaging than the article indicated.
    anonymous
  • Email Woes

    And now a month later Web Central's email servers are down, what a joke!
    anonymous
  • Web Central Fails Again

    We have a number of domains hosted on Web Central, although not for much longer, they could have put voicemail on their phone service to let customers know what was happening rather than not answering phones.

    Our web sites are on diffrent servers at Web Central ,and all are an email free zone... these guys have big and ongoing problems and no idea of of the basics of customer service.
    anonymous
  • Webcentral is hopeless and unreliable

    I can confirm that all my domains hosted with webcentral have no access to their emails for the whole of tuesday.

    Webcentral will not respond in any way whether by answering their phones or responding to emails.

    After many years using their services i am going to move all my services from them and i would recommend everyone else to do the same.

    They are unreliable and they take no responsibility for these kind of outages.
    anonymous
  • Web Central - Tread Caerfully

    Why would anyone use any service from Web Central. Server down for over 24 hours - and they now say in a note to customers it is workling - but it is not! This is killing our business!
    anonymous
  • High availability hosting

    Companies link www.criticalops.com.au provide high-availability hosting so if one server fails another one can take over.
    anonymous
  • Corporate Treatment to kill your small business

    Nothing like corporate treatment to kill your small business.

    Oh, but the system is working.
    For who ?

    We moved our mail and web to another melb mob... www.webdirect.com.au

    same failover thats actually tested and we get to see the reports.

    they seem alright. at least they answered the phone and wanted our business.
    anonymous