Microsoft's subscription-based Office 365 servicve has been knocked offline for much of Europe, apparently thanks to a flaw in the company's Azure cloud platform.
Offering access to Microsoft's popular productivity suite and a chunk of cloud-based storage, Office 365 has been a big success for the company - thanks in no small part to its decision to give away a year's subscription with low-cost Windows-powered tablets. The platform is heavily integrated into the company's latest Windows 10 operating system, but European users are struggling to access the service this morning thanks to an apparent crash in the company's Azure cloud computing platform.
While the Office 365 servers for the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region are working fine, the company's European access points went down this morning without warning. Checks from London, Edinburgh and Dublin confirm that access to portal.office.com, the main access point for Office 365's authentication service, is unavailable through the UK, and the same issue has been tested throughout Europe from Amsterdam to Leipzig.
Microsoft had not issued a statement on the Office 365 issue at the time of writing, but the company's Azure status page
confirmed that the cloud platform powering Office 365 is experiencing issues relating to Active Directory which may account for the downtime.
Those relying on Office 365 access today are advised to switch to a VPN with an end-point in an APAC region to bypass the affected servers. If you are already authenticated, you may find that Office 365 is working normally - in which case, don't log out.