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Wednesday, 14 February 2018 12:00

Vocus mum on state of Sydney data centre after outage Featured

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The Vocus Group is remaining mum about the state of its Sydney data centre in Alexandria, with a request for comment unanswered after a major outage on Tuesday.

The outage hit the data centre at 7am on Tuesday, with both the A and B power feeds lost for a minute meaning that there was no redundancy.  But iTWire understands that an unrelated issue affected the back-up generator resulting in power loss for two minutes and the issue was resolved last evening.

Servers Australia has a number of servers at the data centre and network operator Jaden Roberts said that services were restored to these by 5pm on Tuesday.

Servers Australia managing director Jared Hirst said on Tuesday in a post to the broadband forum Whirlpool: "All services are coming back online now, but due to the inrush of power, there has been a huge amount of damage to PSUs.

"Engineers have been on-site since this morning replacing servers. There is a total of around 500 servers at this site, and we are around 60% complete in checking them all."

He said he had enacted an emergency data centre move for all customers at the site, adding that the company would be vacating the site in the next few weeks.

"Unfortunately, there has been a complete loss of power at the Vocus Data Centre whilst they had scheduled maintenance this morning. All A and B power feeds have been lost for a brief one minute," Hirst said.

"All servers at this site and switches have A and B power to avoid outages, especially during maintenance. I am extremely disappointed that this has happened. This is a very small site for Servers Australia, as most servers are located at Equinix or our own data centres.

"I will not tolerate a loss of both A and B power under any circumstances, as this means that there is NO redundancy."

The outage comes at a sensitive time for Vocus as it is trying to sell its data centres.

In reaction to Hirst's post, one Whirlpool user Dabbles said: "Unfortunately for Vocus, this is not the first time that facility has lost power."

Another, Clbh, posted: "As far as we've heard, the facility was on generators at the time due to scheduled UPS maintenance that evidently required bypassing mains. They suffered cascading generator failure and were unable to switch back to mains before all power was lost.

"Incidentally, we saw no sign of the stated 'inrush of power' that Jared mentioned above. I'm not sure what happened to SAU's kit, but we suffered no hardware failures in our racks when power returned."

iTWire contacted Vocus early this morning to find out the current state of play, but has not heard back as of noon on Wednesday.

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.