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Summary:

It has been a day from hell for Skype fans and Skype, the company. The outages have impacted many. Skype’s misfortune turned out to be a boon for SIPphone. The company saw a 400% increase in traffic this morning, with 4 times increase in sales, calls […]

It has been a day from hell for Skype fans and Skype, the company. The outages have impacted many. Skype’s misfortune turned out to be a boon for SIPphone.

The company saw a 400% increase in traffic this morning, with 4 times increase in sales, calls and downloads of its Gizmo Project software. “It is interesting to see that voice callers are transitory,” Michael Robertson, founder, SIPphone wrote in an email.

Meanwhile on the Skype outage front, we spoke to a Skype spokesperson and she said that the crew is working hard to get the service back by August 17th. Skype Journal is keeping tabs and says tht about 2.5 million Skypers are back online.

Skype spokeswoman also clarified the problem was not with either the Microsoft updates or with the Skype P2P architecture.

The Skype system has not crashed or been victim of a cyber attack. We love our customers too much to let that happen. This problem occurred because of a deficiency in an algorithm within Skype networking software. This controls the interaction between the user’s own Skype client and the rest of the Skype network.

Meanwhile, my sources say that one of the reasons it is taking so long for the service to come back is the Skype might be trying to restore the services from the most recent version of its database. We will keep you posted. you can also check the Skype blog for latest updates.

  1. Bye bye OnState.

    http://www.on-state.com/

    How can you run a call center with 18 hour outages? Ouch.

    Well you get what you pay for.

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  2. “The Skype system has not crashed or been victim of a cyber attack. We love our customers too much to let that happen.”

    umm…not sure what loving the customer has to do with whether or not someone launches an attack against the system.

    coincidentally: http://seclists.org/fulldisclosure/2007/Aug/0323.html

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  3. Number of Skype Authentication servers:

    Count == 50; // Clustered

    Number of potential Skype clients:

    Count = 220,000,000 // Mostly decentralized

    Number of SuperNode clients to maintain network connectivity:

    Count = N / 300 at any one time.

    •   If there are 3.0 million users online then the ratio is 3,000,000 / 300 = 10,000  == Supernodes available
    •   Supernodes are bootstraps into the network for normal first run clients ("and handle routing of children calls").
    •   Supernodes maintain the network overlay via a DHT("Distributed Has Table") "type" method. // This is normally very slow and done over UDP
    •   If a client cannot find a Supernode, regardless of authentication via central server then is NOT allowed on the Skype network.
    

    Lack of Supernodes mean lack of network connectivity regardless of successful login via “central server”.

    You CAN be a Supernode but not have full network connectivity because you have only a portion of the “Distributed Index Data aka DHT”.

    MOST people that become Supernodes will bail out if they cannot keep a clear route (“aka calls bail out, client restarts and aborts Supernode status, thus booting it’s 300 – 500 Children and putting them into a “Connecting mode”.

    Children that are trying to “Connect” are unable to do anything unless they have a “Supernode” as a parent. // No calls, No IM….

    The overview of this is as follows:

    Skype introduced a flaw into the network that dealt with “routing” and “fucked” the “decentralized data store aka DHT” this in turn ran clients on a RANDOM search of Supernodes which at this point were well booted off of the network.

    In the End:
    It is a huge cycle, no matter how many bugs they “fix” in the “central servers” it will take many days for N nodes to become Supernodes so they can route X data from peer A to peer B. This is NOT minor, a fix to the centralized server code base to relay data to N Supernodes there is lack there of, resulting of a very segregate network. Right now there are approximatly 10,000 sub Skype networks instead of 1 Single “in sync” network. When this “data store(see DHT) is in sync globally then the Skype network will be again STABLE.

    I know this is very broad but, unless magically all of said nodes can recreate the “single overlay (DHT)” then nothing will be in sync. You will see delayed messaged, delayed or incorrect profiles and presence.

    My take, in the end is give it 48 more hours and it may be semi-stable, but hey this is what you get with using end users as your own redundancy…

    Yours…

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  4. No VoIP today?

    (Testing.) Entwarnung: Mein (IAX2- und SIP-basiertes-) VoIP tut, wie erwartet, wie geschnitten Brot, sogar vom N95 aus ;)

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  5. Julian Cain , That was an awesome explanation!

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  6. [...] says that significant number of users could use it now. But I still couldn’t log into it yet. Om Malik says Skype’s loss is Gizmo Project’s [...]

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  7. sippedoutyoda Friday, August 17, 2007

    That was Skype…

    Now is the time for Damaka (www.damaka.com)

    Pure SIP based P2P application that encrypts signaling and media end to end so, all your conversations are fully secured end to end.

    It does encrypted video conference, audio conference, video mail, whiteboarding, audio streaming, desktop sharing, SMS, voice mail, IM chat, video profile, dial in, dial out, free pc-to-pc (audio & video) calling anywhere in the world, cheap pc to phone, phone to phone, secure file transfer, application sharing, even mobile (pocket pc and smart phones) all this is done end to end securely without using any kind of servers in the middle.

    Check ‘em out at http://www.damaka.com/consumers/

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  8. @ Julian – great explanation – so good I posted it on my blog :)..

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  9. It would be funny if the Skype network cannot rebuild itself from scratch at its current scale. Perhaps the stability of a week ago was only achieved by its gradual growth trajectory over preceding years.

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  10. Hmmm…I’d have to say I’ll be considering looking for a backup provider, just in case Skype fails again.

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