iiNet broadband customers in NSW credited for network outages

ISP iiNet has offered its NSW ADSL broadband customers an extra week’s worth of credit on their usage bill as an apology for network outages experienced across the state earlier this month.

The network outages occurred on 14, 16 and 18 June, with downtime totalling between 16 and 18 hours, iiNet managing director Michael Malone said.

According to the ISP, the downtime was due to a complete dropout of traffic between iiNet and its network provider Telstra.

“[Traffic flow] simply stopped working,” Malone said in an e-mail sent to iiNet’s NSW ADSL customers on Wednesday.

The cause of the cut in traffic remains a mystery, he said.

“We still don’t know actually know what caused the problems.

“In each case, technicians at each end worked to fix the problem, but were unable to do so. The fault simply disappeared a few hours later, with no indication as to what actually caused the problem in the first place.”

While he couldn’t rule “anything out”, Malone told PC World it was “very unlikely” that the network outage had been due to a hack.

“None of the machines involved went down or had any difficulties. It was the link itself that wasn’t working,” he said.

Malone said Telstra technicians have continued to offer suggestions and remedies for fixing the issue.

“Their [Telstra’s] technicians are great and are always trying to help,” he said. “We’ve been working with their commercial people this week to try and get an investigation of the problem and they’re also proving to be helpful in making this happen.”

Although his team have been unable to determine the cause of the problem, Malone said iiNet will be replacing hardware in Sydney on Friday 27 June and adding in a second router.

In a post to the iiNet broadband forum on the Whirlpool Web site, Malone said adding in a second router would give iiNet the opportunity to narrow down the problem, should it happen again. The outage window was scheduled for between midnight and 5:00 a.m.

“At the moment, we have one LNS (L2TP Network Server) in Sydney which terminates our Telstra services. What we are going to do on Friday morning is split the service onto two LNSs. This won't fix the problem, if it still exists, but if the problem occurs again, then it will be easier to see where the fault is. If both LNSs go down at the same time, it's most likely a Telstra issue. If one of them goes down, then it's most likely an iiNet hardware problem,” Malone said.

As an apology to its customers for the recurring outages, Malone said iiNet will extend the due date of each NSW customer’s bill by one week.

“So if they were presently paid up until 1/08/03, we’ll extend it to 08/08/03,” he said. The extra credit should be added to the customer’s account by next week.

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Nadia Cameron

Nadia Cameron

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