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Facebook System Outage


Facebook System Outage


Facebook is having a rough morning. Facebook is experiencing errors across the site. It won't allow you to update your status, post comments, send messages or post photos. Users are also unable to Like posts. It is also unclear as to how many were affected by the outage, although Twitter is showing complaints coming from around the world, according to Data Center Knowledge

TechCrunch explained that "If you were hoping to share your feelings about life with the world this Monday morning, you're out of luck. (Unless you prefer to do so with Twitter.)"

Wall Street Journal elaborated on the significance of the event explaining that "System outages aren't common but they aren't unheard of either. Companies like Facebook and Twitter experience disruptions from time to time, often because some service or a server is knocked offline."

Huffington Post stated that "If you're unable to like, post or comment on Facebook this Monday morning, you aren't alone."

When a service with 1.15 billion users is not working, users vent their frustrations and publicize the difficulties with the service. 

Mishandled Change is Painful

For complex dynamic ecosystems, such as Facebook's IT infrastructure, change happens a lot. Infrastructure is upgraded, patches are installed, automated processes change files and system environments and configurations are even manually changed. So while usually these activities are performed properly ... sometimes they're not. When don't come off as planned, the cause may only become apparent when a failure erupts. 

A key component of the entire IT operations process is change and configuration management. Every time a change occurs in the infrastructure, IT control is impacted, whether for the deployment of new hardware or applications, or some other change. When an organization can confidently manage change on a continuous basis, this provides the visibility required to help ensure that their infrastructure is secure, compliant and effective. 

Managing the configuration of multiple environments is still the bane of IT Operations. Between applications, environments, and underlying infrastructure, mistakes and unauthorized changes can still happen (and do, as we seen with a number of high profile organizations) demanding that IT ops spend time managing detailed configuration values.

IT Operations Analytics

Not only for Facebook, but today's IT Operations face new levels of challenges in change and configuration management that available tools can't handle. As seen from the Facebook outage, organizations suffer tremendous public relations difficulties as well as impact to cash flow, productivity losses, compliance penalties, impact to customers, and a lack of confidence in IT. With the operational data explosion, there has been significant demand for IT Operations Analytics systems, to provide immediate insight into operations. 

Gartner recognized IT Operations Analytics as an area on the rise with high impact on IT operations, saying that analytics will enable IT operations to perform processess that will significantly increase revenues or cost savings for the enterprise.

Your Turn
How do YOU manage changes in your infrastructure?

About the Author
Martin Perlin