Microsoft Apologising for Azure outage, Refunds Third of February’s Bill

Microsoft is issuing a refund to all customers regardless of whether or not they have been affected by Azure's leap year outage.

The leap day has been a hard test for Microsoft's Azure service, the cloud hosting platform being hit by major problems on February 28th and minor hiccups on the following days.

The company announced a 33% refund to all customers for the month of February for one day of downtime.

The refund should be available to all Azure Compute, Access Control, Service Bus and Caching clients, in the form of valid credits.

In a blog post detailing Azure and the service disruption, Bill Laing, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President, Server and Cloud, shed more light on the Leap Day bug itself and how it kicked into action in a remarkable show of contrition from the company.

Perhaps more importantly, Laing said that Microsoft engineers analysed the incident and ways through which they can improve the engineering, operations and communications.

He also pointed out that software, people and hardware are all vulnerable to mistakes, failures and weaknesses. The leap year incident was caused by a bug which was triggered at 00:00 UST February 29th and recovery ended on the following second day.

Amazon and Google, rivals to Microsoft, have been affected by downtime several times already over the years.