All of a sudden, a number of websites, including many popular ones around the globe suddenly became unavailable with no immediately obvious explanation.
From Reddit to Pinterest and Twitch, to Amazon UK and also PayPal, as well as many news websites from major publications are also down.
They cannot be accessed, with visitors seeing error 503, meaning that target servers were not ready to handle visitors' requests.
People started to speculating what happened, before it was realized that the culprit was Fastly.
Fastly is an American cloud computing services provider. Its products include a content delivery network (CDN),
And it's this CDN that failed, resulting in a global outage of a huge number of websites.
CDN allows websites to keep copies of their pages closer to their visitors.
This way, visitors accessing a website, will have a cache loaded from their closest location, instead of having their browsers to retrieve the website's data from its original server. As a result, the web page should load a lot faster, improving users' browsing experience.
And Fastly here, operates a huge number of servers located in a number of countries, in order to work on a global scale.
This time, its CDN had issues and failed to operate, making a huge number of websites and services to go offline.
When Fastly went down, it went down hard, with around three-quarters of the traffic coming from Fastly suddenly disappearing.
"A fix was applied at 10:36 UTC," wrote Fastly on its status page.
“We identified a service configuration that triggered disruptions across our POPs (points of presence, the worldwide network of server farms) globally and have disabled that configuration. Our global network is coming back online,” a spokesperson for the company explained.
The global outage lasted about an hour.