Lightning hits Dublin data centres


A lightning strike has resulted in power outages at data centres belonging to Microsoft and Amazon, leading to disruption for users of Amazon's EC2 cloud computing platform and Microsoft’s Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS).

According to the Data Center Knowledge website, Amazon reported lightning struck a transformer close to its data centre, with an explosion and fire that put the utility service of of action.

On its health service dashboard, Amazon reported: "Due to the scale of the power disruption, a large number of EBS [Elastic Block Storage] servers lost power and require manual operations before volumes can be restored. Restoring these volumes requires that we make an extra copy of all data, which has consumed most spare capacity and slowed our recovery process."

On its Twitter feed, Microsoft said its BPOS services were now coming back online for customers.

A significant number of multinational software firms, including Microsoft, Amazon and EMC, already carry out cloud computing activities here, and many indigenous software firms have also entered the sector.

A report commissioned by Microsoft estimated that by 2014, the cloud computing industry here could be worth €9.5 billion and employ 8,600 people.

Cloud computing moves technology infrastructure into third-party data centres and is considerably cheaper than conventional approaches to computing.