OUTAGE: MCI/Worldcom frame-relay network

Sean Donelan SEAN at SDG.DRA.COM
Mon Aug 9 06:12:47 UTC 1999

SEAN at dra.COM (Sean Donelan) writes:
>I'm trying to post no more than once in 12 hours.

Its been another twelve hours.

Although I don't like all the red on our network map, it is showing how
resiliant IP protocols are.  My core network uses several different facility
providers and technologies, and for those customers who have more than one
connection: IP works.  How else could I send this e-mail?  However, for
customers with only one connection, they don't really care how many other
connections are working.  They only care about their one connection.

MCI/Worldcom claims 75% up their frame-relay network is 'up.'   This is
down from their previous claim on Friday that 90% of the frame-relay
network was 'up.'  We still see a number of PVCs throughout the US and
Canada either completely down, or dropping so many frames as to be
unusable.  I received similar reports from other MCI/Worldcom frame-relay
users throughout the US and even as far away as Germany.

To try to figure out what is going on MCI/Worldcom imposed a 'quiet time'
on their network, telling their engineers to stop touching things.  This
helped somewhat.  Portions of the network stabilized on its own, but there
is still massive congestion.  The quiet time is over.  Now MCI/Worldcom is
trying to reduce the congestion by disconnecting parts of the frame-relay

Remember this is Sunday, normally a low-traffic day.  Monday is underway
in Europe, and will be hitting the East Coast of the USA soon.  Traffic
levels are going to increase on the network, assuming any traffic can
get through at all.

MCI/Worldcom's web site continues its long silence about this outage.
I've got to hand it to MCI/Worldcom; its engineers may have trouble
keeping a frame-relay network going, but its PR department has done
a great job keeping a lid on the story.  Even MCI/Worldcom customers
can't find out what is happening.
Sean Donelan, Data Research Associates, Inc, St. Louis, MO
  Affiliation given for identification not representation

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