Reason behind Skype outage revealed

Written by Phil Cogar

August 21, 2007 // 9:01 a.m.

Tags: #outage #reboot #resolved #skype #update #windows

During the latter part of last week, Skype users has difficulty connecting to the Skype network. It all started last Thursday when the network started becoming sluggish before finally collapsing.

Skype's Heartbeat status blog says that the initial trigger behind the failure was a massive amount of users rebooting their computer after receiving a routine Windows Update.

The high number of reboots had an effect on the network's resources which then caused a flood of log-in requests. Combined with a lack of network resources, the situation snowballed until the system just crashed completely.

"Normally Skype’s peer-to-peer network has an inbuilt ability to self-heal, however, this event revealed a previously unseen software bug within the network resource allocation algorithm which prevented the self-healing function from working quickly. Regrettably, as a result of this disruption, Skype was unavailable to the majority of its users for approximately two days," said Skype's spokesman Villu Arak.

The bug has been squashed now, so if there's another outage at least it won't be caused by something as simple as a forced reboot on thousands of users at once.

Did the outage effect you over the latter part of last week? Have you moved over to using VOIP exclusively? Tell us what you think about the outage and VoIP services in general over in the forums or in the comments section below.

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