NaviSite Struggles to Resolve Hosting Outage

NaviSite will address customer dissatisfaction and potential legal action after fixing the prolonged outage.

Hosting services provider NaviSite is hoping to put its five-day-and-counting service outage behind it as early as the evening of Nov. 8.

The next step will be to figure out how to mitigate customer dissatisfaction, particularly for those that have been out of business for days.

On social networking sites such as, customers have been lamenting the NaviSite outage that brought down an estimated 165,000 Web sites as the result of a botched data center migration. A number of customers are calling for lawsuits, some claiming their business has been ruined in days of a continuous outage.

"I am one of the many business[es] whose Web site and email are still down because of NaviSites incompetence," wrote Joseph Sherman, on Digg. "Millions of dollars are being lost by many different companies because of NaviSite. There should be a class action lawsuit or some legal action taken to compensate those companies for the loss of revenue."

"My site is still down," wrote another Digg poster. "When will the compensation be paid?"

Rathin Sinha, NaviSites chief marketing officer, said the company has legal council prepared to answer any questions of liability.

The data center migration that caused the massive site outages was a planned event and was intended to improve service and scalability for NaviSites newest customer base, said Sinha.

"Primarily the purpose of this migration is to move customers from an older platform to a brand new platform, to a brand new set of servers for scalability and performance," said Sinha. "It is to give [customers] a better platform, a better environment. The people who are migrated are quite happy with the performance.

"Right now our primary focus is to bring up all the customers, get them back live and try to solve any future problems. And then think about [any resulting issues]. We want them to be happy with us, and make them happy. We will do whatever is necessary to the extent that we can to help them."

Sinha said that NaviSite has tried to be transparent with the issue and the steps it is taking to solve the problem. Customers, he said, are primarily concerned with one question: "When can my site come up, can you help me?"


Click here to read about a service outage caused by a massive server migration at Hostway.

NaviSites problems started Nov. 3 when the company attempted to move some 850 servers from Baltimore, the headquarters of Alabanza, which it had acquired in August, to its Andover, Mass., base. Initially, 200 servers were to be moved by truck and 650 moved virtually, with a data transfer over the Internet. When that process proved too slow, NaviSite started tossing servers in a truck and physically moving them to Andover. Then technical glitches created even more issues.

NaviSites service outage is eerily similar to one of its competitors. Last July Hostway, which had acquired ValueWeb, planned to move several thousand servers 270 miles away, from Miami to Tampa, Fla. While its not clear exactly what happened with Hostways migration, the outcome was that thousands of customers were without service for some three days.

Its unclear if Hostway had any fallout from its days-long customer outage. Hostway officials did not return calls to eWEEK by press time.


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