On Tuesday, Amazon Web Services (AWS) experienced outage-like issues with its S3 cloud storage, taking some business customers offline and causing slowdowns for others.
AWS has existed for longer than a lot of us realize—S3 is the oldest iteration of it, and it’s been around since 2006. Downtimes are rare in the public cloud, and any interruption can seem like the end of the internet as we know it.
One look at Twitter and you’ll find countless people who are locked out of essential services: IFTTT was completely knocked offline, Slack was decidedly less chatty, and other East Coast businesses were suffering severe slowdowns and lag times.
Amazon hasn’t called this error an outage, saying instead that it was an error rate issue that was simply causing massive slowdowns. If all of this is bringing back memories of the 2015 AWS outage you might be rethinking business in the public cloud.
Amazon’s stated S3 uptime goal is 99.99%, also known as “four nines,” which equates to around an hour of downtime per year, according to Dave Bartoletti, public cloud analyst at Forrester Research. Instead of downtime, though, Bartoletti said we need to think about S3’s actual uptime.
“S3 has consistently outperformed the four nines they shoot for, year over year,” Bartoletti said. He also added that the 2015 AWS outage wasn’t even S3.
AWS, Bartoletti said, is the perfect example of cloud done right. “This isn’t a normal incident, nor do we see any indication that the public cloud is becoming unreliable,” Bartoletti said. “It’s simply a hiccup.”
Should you still reconsider?
Outages like this one may be short, but that doesn’t mean they don’t result in lost revenue. Some e-commerce sites and companies that rely on visitors to earn revenue simply can’t make money if no one can reliably access their site.
Does that mean the public cloud is immature, unstable, or simply not a good idea? So, how should a company approach a move to the public cloud?
There’s no doubt that practically every company should have a cloud strategy, however Amazon’s outage has proven the Public Cloud is not the be-all and end-all solution for all companies. If your entire company’s business operations were dependent on solely Public Cloud services, how much would this outage have cost your business? Food for thought.
At PCe, we have recently launched our own Private Cloud in a highly redundant Data Centre which serves as an excellent component of an overall Cloud Strategy. Contact us today to learn how a Private Cloud could be a game-changer for your company’s cloud strategy.