Last week, many North American Office 365 users suffered a three hour interruption to the service. Some Dynamics CRM users also experienced service disruption. This is not ideal for anybody but any IT infrastructure will suffer outage as some stage of its lifetime. What made this outage acceptable for the majority of users was the fact that Microsoft kept the users informed via their Service Health Dashboard. Not knowing why or receiving no information about an outage is incredibly frustrating for users. The service being unavailable is also frustrating but much less so when the supplier is providing real-time updates as they work to resolve the problems. This is why, despite the large number of affected users there has been very little negative publicity around the outage.
So what caused the outage? Unofficial reports suggest it was a network problem at the data centre but these reports have neither been confirmed or denied. What such an outage does highlight is that moving to the cloud requires a thorough appreciation of the risks, a contingency plan for when (not if) outages occur and also to select an appropriate supplier with high reliability/availability and a good communication channel in the event of outages. All of these requirements make selecting a supplier some challenge. A thorough understanding of the technologies, their points of failure, the suppliers and their products is required to ensure the best possible decision on Cloud Computing can be made for your organisation. This knowledge is exactly what is provided by the Learning Tree Hands-On Cloud Computing course which is delivered by industry leading experts who are Cloud Computing practitioners and can answer your specific questions based on their vast experience. If you would like to build your Cloud Computing knowledge, why not consider attending. A schedule can be found here.