BlackBerry Outage, Failed Apple iOS Upgrade Leaves Writer Out in the Cold

 
 
By Wayne Rash  |  Posted 2011-10-12 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

News Analysis: It's a frustrating day when not one, but two different mobile devices fail to perform as expected. Especially when you have to deal with worldwide BlackBerry service outage that wasn't supposed to happen again.

I woke up Wednesday morning feeling like I was living inside a bad country music song. A cold rain was falling and my BlackBerry had stopped getting messages sometime around midnight.

At least, I thought, I could entertain myself by trying out the new version of iOS on my iPad. I thought about that as I had my morning meal under a black cloud. No BlackBerry messages meant that I wouldn't start the day with one of life's little pleasures-deleting email without reading it first.

I sat down at my desk to start the day with a new version of iOS. But first I had to upgrade iTunes even though I'd just done that last week. Then I plugged in my iPad, and it decided that today was the day to synchronize with Outlook, even though I had turned off that feature. Trying to sync your BlackBerry and your iPad to Outlook can lead to considerable confusion, so I'd turned off the Blackberry before trying to sync Outlook with the iPad. But I guess the iPad had sensed the BlackBerry's diminished state.

Meanwhile, two messages from yesterday arrived from my eWEEK email account. The BlackBerry buzzed joyously. Then when I tried to sync the BlackBerry, it wanted to get everything from the iPad. I knew that wouldn't end well, so making sure that the BlackBerry was turned off, I plugged in the iPad again.

No joy. iTunes told me that there was no update for my iPad. A check of the Apple Website took me to the photo of Steve Jobs, still there a week after his death. I searched for iOS 5, and was told that it was coming soon. Then iTunes told me again that it had no updates for me. I looked outside and watched the cold rain.

I took some time for lunch and went back to my BlackBerry, which had been charging all morning. There were two more messages from my eWEEK account, but I had already seen those hours earlier.

But then came joy, at least briefly. This time iTunes admitted as to how there might be an update for the iPad after all, so I clicked the button. The software downloaded, but when the install started, it ended in a few minutes with an error message. Apparently iTunes couldn't access one of Apple's Internet sites. The help file suggested I check my firewall to make sure port 80 and port 443 were open. They were.

The BlackBerry buzzed again. Another email message I'd read hours before, thanking me for writing a caption.




 
 
 
 
Wayne Rash Wayne Rash is a Senior Analyst for eWEEK Labs and runs the magazine's Washington Bureau. Prior to joining eWEEK as a Senior Writer on wireless technology, he was a Senior Contributing Editor and previously a Senior Analyst in the InfoWorld Test Center. He was also a reviewer for Federal Computer Week and Information Security Magazine. Previously, he ran the reviews and events departments at CMP's InternetWeek.

He is a retired naval officer, a former principal at American Management Systems and a long-time columnist for Byte Magazine. He is a regular contributor to Plane & Pilot Magazine and The Washington Post.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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