Famous operational issues

John Curran jcurran at istaff.org
Wed Feb 17 23:47:30 UTC 2021

(resent - to list this time)
On 16 Feb 2021, at 2:37 PM, John Kristoff <jtk at dataplane.org <mailto:jtk at dataplane.org>> wrote:
> Friends,
> I'd like to start a thread about the most famous and widespread Internet
> operational issues, outages or implementation incompatibilities you
> have seen.
> Which examples would make up your top three?

John  - 

I have no idea what outages were most memorable for others, but the Stanford transfer switch explosion in October 1996 resulted in a much of the Internet in the Bay Area simply not being reachable for several days.   

At the time there were three main power grids feeding Stanford – two from PG&E and one from Stanford’s own CoGen plant – and somehow a rat crawling into one of the two 12KVA transfer switches resulted in an the switch disppearing in an epic explosion that even took out a portion of the exterior wall of the building. 

The ensuing restoration involved lots of industry folks, GE power-on-wheel generating stations, anaconda-sized power cables, and all in all was quite the adventure. 


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