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Today in Cloud

The latest outage of the Amazon Web Services cloud, down for several hours on Friday, June 29th in Northern Virginia, has prompted questions about the wisdom of its architecture when other cloud providers in the area, notably Joyent, were unaffected. Amazon took pains to explain every last detail that caused the outage, which appears to have been due to a combination of backup generators not working as expected; bugs in the automation process when certain services attempt to failover and thirdly the control plane not working which allows customers to take action and create, remove or change resources in the Region. While control planes aren’t required for the ongoing use of resources, they are supposed to be helpful in outages where customers are trying to react to the loss of resources in one Availability Zone by moving to another. It would be a shock if AWS’ competitors did not use the outage as an opportunity to attack the cloud provider, but it also opens up the debate around multi-cloud DR strategies and why customers are not taking this approach.