Real-time registrations of .info domain names hit a brick wall on their second day out and are on hold pending the resolution of technical problems.
Afilias, the company administering the new top-level domain, said the system for new registrations had been taken down on Wednesday morning and would be restored later in the day.
The trouble started this weekend when Afilias implemented a system for real-time registrations, meaning that people could see if a name was available, register it, find it in the Whois database and launch a site at that address within minutes. That system for instant gratification could not hold up under intense demand, according to Afilias.
"Over the last 24 hours, we have had a large number of requests to register names, and the system was not performing as quickly as we thought it should," said Roland LaPlante, vice president of Afilias. "We couldn't remedy it while it was still operating, so to make sure everyone has equal access -- that people were not competing on an unequal footing -- we decided to take the registry down for maintenance."
Afilias delegated registration capabilities to 70 registrars internationally. Those registrars collected 50,000 names during a "sunrise" period reserved for trademark holders between 25 July and 27 August. The system opened to the public 12 September and subsequently encountered a delay attributed to complications arising from the 11 September terrorist attacks on New York City.
Despite the delay and the suspension, LaPlante characterised the launch of .info registrations as "very successful."
"Fortunately, there has been a high level of demand, and now we need to fine-tune our systems to give everyone equal access," he said. "We apologise to the public for any inconvenience this has caused, but we believe that everyone will be better off in the end."
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