At just after 6am Eastern users worldwide of Microsoft’s popular web based Email system HotMail started to experience problems accessing their accounts. It is now 10 hours later and the problem still exists. Microsoft are being tight lipped about the number of users affected, but there are reports from several countries that the HotMail service has gone into meltdown. With a user base of over 280 million active accounts this is clearly a significant failure.

There are also reports that other parts of the online Microsoft world are experiencing similar issues. It appears to be connected to the Microsoft Live user login system, rather than the products themselves. Various blogs are reporting problems with MSN messenger, and the Xbox online system, all of which use the Live login system.

Microsoft spokesmen are not being forthcoming with the cause of the problem, and are merely saying that the company is investigating and trying to restore service as quickly as possible.

Although it may not be connected to the issue, it is somewhat ironic that Cnet today published an interview with Windows Server and Tools boss Bob Muglia, in which he says that most of Microsofts online services have been migrated to Server 2008.

Simon Barrett  

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