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Site problems

Steve Herrmann Steve Herrmann | 13:22 UK time, Friday, 12 October 2007

For several hours on Thursday afternoon, the front page of the BBC News website was slow to respond, sometimes displaying error messages. Other sections of the site were also affected at various times during the afternoon.

A graphic of the BBC News websiteIt's a rare event and it caused some comment on technical websites, and also theories about what might have happened - was the BBC changing its webserving providers? Was it a redesign problem? Was it "computer gods punishing us for iPlayer"?

Well although the investigations aren't fully complete, our technical team has confirmed the problems were triggered by a routine software deployment that had unforeseen consequences. To those who had trouble getting onto the site yesterday - apologies - nothing is more important to us than the reliability and resilience of our services and we are taking another hard look at our deployment, contingency and back up procedures.


  • 1.
  • At 01:56 PM on 12 Oct 2007,
  • Rich wrote:

"nothing is more important to us than the reliability and resilience of our services'

Does that include the issue with comments not appearing on Editors' blogs for days after submission, and sometimes not at all? You've assured us that it's a technical issue rather than heavy-handed censorship, but if so it's one which has been ongoing ever since the system went online 18 months ago.

And of course it's still not uncommon to get the 'comments disabled' message when trying to submit to The Editors at seemingly random times.

I've also noticed that as of lunchtime today the Have Your Say boards are still experiencing major issues - the constant defaulting to the front page of a debate has been replaced by lack of graphics, whole pages displaying incorrectly and dialup-esque loading times.

None of which exactly inspires confidence, and it's interesting how technical issues seem mainly confined to the 'interactive' sections of the service...

  • 2.
  • At 02:31 PM on 14 Oct 2007,
  • Rich wrote:

This topic is final proof that the BBC have no conception of the meaning of irony.

I've been trying to post a comment on here since Friday afternoon, without success.

If I do manange to get this one through it will probably be a week before it pops up on the site.

Meanwhile the HYS pages continue to load slowly, crash when you try to recommend something and default to the front page regardless of where you are trying to go.

"nothing is more important to us than the reliability and resilience of our services" - I hope you realise what a hollow ring that sentence has right now!

"unforseen consequences"

There is no such thing in the eyes of old timers.

Those who have the scars to show for their experience operate on the basis of impending disaster.

The new generation operates on the basis of perpetual optimism even in face of advice to the contrary.

At some point in the near future, when all of the corporate mind is populated with the brain cells of the up and coming keeners, disasters worse than this one will befall all ogranisations.

There is no substitute for experience. No matter what the comp sci graduates tell you. None.

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