Amazon's EC2 woes continue

Issues with Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud appear to be spreading beyond the confines of Europe, as a half-hour outage at the company's Virginia server farm left some high-profile sites high and dry.

The outage, which was first officially noticed by Amazon's support staff at 19:39 Pacific Daylight Time, affected the company's US-EAST-1 EC2 region and all instances hosted thereon. That includes some high-profile victims, including file-sharing service CloudApp, location-based social networking service Foursquare, and link sharing site Reddit.

Those sites - and others - remained in a broken state until 20:03 PDT, when the issue was resolved. While Amazon hasn't offered any firm details as to the cause of the problem, it appears to have been one of connectivity to the rest of the Internet.

Despite the relatively short time period, the outage has left Amazon's customers fuming. With many sites choosing to host services and files on Amazon's various cloud offerings - including the Elastic Compute Cloud and the Simple Storage Service - any outage can result in thousands of sites failing to load correctly.

The Virginia outage comes hot on the heels of a lightning strike at the company's Dublin facility which disabled both the incoming power and the backup generators, and which has still not been fully resolved. The company's most recent statement on the matter blamed an error in the company's snapshot clean-up system which has inadvertently deleted required snapshots, leaving its customers with corrupted volumes and missing files.

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