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Microsoft pays out again for cloud services failure

Microsoft has apologised for the network problems that brought down the email services in Office 365 for many US customers earlier this week, and has once again given its cloud productivity customers credit by way of apology.The company said the three-hour outage that struck the cloud productivity suite appeared to have been caused by a "networking interruption" in one of Microsoft's North America datacentres.

Microsoft has apologised for the network problems that brought down the email services in Office 365 for many US customers earlier this week, and has once again given its cloud productivity customers credit by way of apology.

The company said the three-hour outage that struck the cloud productivity suite appeared to have been caused by a "networking interruption" in one of Microsoft's North America datacentres. This made Office 365 Exchange Online services, including the Outlook web app, inaccessible for some customers.

"We apologise for the inconvenience this may have caused you and your employees," Microsoft said in an email. "We are committed to communicating with our customers in an open and honest manner about service issues and the steps we're taking to prevent recurrences."

Microsoft said it was investigating the root cause of the networking interruption, adding that it was giving affected customers credit equal to 25 percent of their monthly invoice.

Office 365 is the successor to Microsoft's Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS), which itself went down — by no means for the first time — earlier this month, for around six hours. On that occasion as well, Microsoft sought to remedy the situation with 25 percent credit.

Some BPOS customers have already been moved over to its Office 365, but most have been told to wait until September.