Microsoft's Azure virtual machine, cloud services down for many

Over the past few days, Azure and other Microsoft cloud services have been down for a number of users worldwide.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

On August 18, starting just before 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT, users across the globe began reporting problems with Microsoft's Azure virtual machines, web sites and other cloud services.


"Starting at 18 Aug 2014 17:49 UTC we are experiencing an interruption to Cloud Services and Virtual Machines in multiple regions," noted Microsoft officials on the Azure staus page.

As shown in the status-page screen caputre above, Virtual Machines is the service most affected by the outage, with web sites down in several US regions and cloud services down in other parts of the US.

"Virtual Machines, Cloud Services, Websites — Multiple Regions — Full Service Interruption," read the Microsoft-provided description of the issue.

I've asked Microsoft for an update as to what's going on and when the problems should be resolved. No word back so far.

Update (3:30 pm ET/12:30 pm PT): More Azure services, including Backup, Service Bus and Site Recovery —  are experiencing problems. An updated note on the Azure status page says:

"Starting at 18 Aug 2014 17:49 UTC we are experiencing an interruption to Azure Services, may include Cloud Services, Virtual Machines Websites, Automation, Service Bus, Backup, Site Recovery and possible other Azure Services in multiple regions. We are currently evaluating options to restore service."

Update (3:40 pm ET/12:40 pm PT): Azure HDInsight, Azure Mobile Services also are experiencing full service interruption in multiple geographies.

Update (3:45 pm ET/12:45 pm PT): Here's Microsoft's statement, via a company spokesperson:

“Per our message to customers on the Azure Status page, we are aware of an interruption with Azure services, including Virtual Machines, Cloud Services and Web sites, and are working with our engineering teams to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.”

Today's Azure service outages/problems comes just a few days after a major worldwide outage for Microsoft's Visual Studio Online service. Though Visual Studio Online runs on Azure, Microsoft officials attributed that outage to Visual Studio Online bugs, rather than Azure problems.

Last week, Azure was hit by a full service interruption in the Japan East region, management portal log-in problems and performance degradation in multiple Azure regions — all on August 15.

Microsoft CRM Online users were hit with problems of their own on August 15. Some users were down for 14 hours or more because of an unspecified issue which led to "some CRM Online organizations (being) disabled unexpectedly."

As far as I know, Microsoft's CRM Online service is still not hosted on Azure. But Microsoft management is pushing field sales and partners to make selling CRM Online a top priority in fiscal 2015.

Update (August 18 10 pm ET/7 pm PT): Looks like almost all is well now. Not sure exactly when the Azure  issues mentioned above were resolved.

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