Hotmail (s MSFT) and Outlook.com e-mail services are down again for many customers and have been for several hours, according to Twitter reports and Microsoft’s own Twitter Support account.
This is just more bad news for the popular Hotmail email service that suffered a big snafu on January 8, and folks don’t have much of a sense of humor about it. Indeed some GigaOM commenters say the problems have persisted for them since that time — all the while the Microsoft status page registering no issue. The UK’s IT Pro reported on the latest issue here, laying the blame on the snafu on the ongoing migration of Hotmail users over to Outlook.com.
An outage is definitely not good but what’s really troubling here, as ITPro points out, is that the Hotmail/Outlook.com status pages reflect no problem at all. If cloud service purveyors want customers to come aboard, they need to provide a real window into what’s going on — the good and the bad. And this lack of disclosure — except thank goodness for Twitter — is unacceptable.
I will update this story when Microsoft responds to request for comment.
Update: On May 2, 2013, Microsoft said the Hotmail-to-Outlook.com migration is complete. Please feel free to comment there.
Update: According to Microsoft:
“The team is currently investigating an issue affecting a small number of users’ access to Hotmail and Outlook.com, and they are working to restore full access to the service as quickly as possible. I will connect with the team on the status page, as I know full transparency is important to the team.”
Another update from Microsoft spokeswoman re. the unchanging status page:
“If there is an issue impacting a small number of customers, only affected customers will see the personalized status update on http://status.live.com. Customers must be logged into their account to see this status update. The issue today is only impacting a small number of users, so only affected users will see an update on the status page. However, issues that impact a significant number of customers will be noted and visible on the server status page to everyone, regardless of whether you’re logged into your account or not. Microsoft takes both issues and full transparency related to issue updates very seriously and works to resolve issues quickly for customers.”
This story was updated at 10:11 a.m. PDT with Microsoft comment; the second update pertaining to the Hotmail status page was madea t 12:13 p.m. PDT.