German host STRATO suffers massive outage

unsplash-logoJordan Harrison

One of Germany’s biggest hosts suffered a massive outage affecting hundreds if not thousands of users.

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One of Germany’s biggest hosts, STRATO, with over 2 million customers, suffered a massive outage during Tuesday morning, on the 30th. The outage started around 11 in the morning, and lasted for about 3 hours, with websites progressively becoming accessible again around 14.

During the outage, websites would return a range of errors, ranging from Error 502, Proxy Error, Internal Server issues, to various unrelated errors. Even after the services started returning, performance on most websites was sluggish, with the backend of, for example, WordPress sites, inaccessible. On STRATO’s side, trying to access the database would also return a specific error, although there’s no specific information on what this error is.

The issue was eventually acknowledged by STRATO’s support on Twitter, responding to various tweets from affected users, stating that the technicians were working to try and solve the issue in the data centres.

“Unfortunately, we are indeed currently experiencing a malfunction. Our engineers are working hard on a solution. […]”
“[…] Our colleagues in the data centre are already working on it. The issue should be resolved promptly. […]”

When asked further, with questions of the cause potentially being a DDoS, STRATO’s support replied the cause is currently unknown.

“At the moment, we still do not know why. […]”

At the time of writing this article, the cause of the outage is still unknown, with STRATO posting a quick note on their website and on Twitter, saying that part of the service is inaccessible. This is indeed true, with the entire database/admin panel returning an error. It is unclear when this feature will become available again. Some users have also asked whether the backups are safe or not, although the company was unable to answer this question.

“[…] Currently there are restrictions on accessing some websites and services. Our colleagues are already working on a solution. […]”

STRATO’s handling of the situation was not stellar, providing no information to customers during the first two hours of the outage, and the only place having some kind of information being Twitter. No e-mail has been sent to customers yet, with just a message on their Client login area information of the restrictions on some functions.

Our website [] is hosted on STRATO’s servers, being one of the many affected during the outage.