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Salesforce.com Blames Outage On Database

Barbara Darrow
customer access problems

A spokesman acknowledged that some customers experienced "intermittent access" to the company's on-demand CRM yesterday from 9:30 a.m. and 12:41 p.m. eastern time and again between 2:00 p.m. and 4:45 p.m. eastern time Tuesday. The issue affected one of four global nodes, and the root cause was an error in the database cluster.

Salesforce.com addressed the issue with the (unnamed) database vendor, according the spokesman. By later Tuesday afternoon, all was well with the on-demand CRM world again.

Two words: Ruh-roh.

Salesforce.com, San Francisco, has been pretty vocal about running on Oracle database infrastructure.

And Oracle has been more-than-vocal about the benefits of its Real Application Clusters (RAC).

Is this a crack in the RAC facade? Stay tuned.

Meanwhile, hosted apps rivals jumped on the issue.

"FYI, we've offered a money back uptime guarantee since April 2004," wrote Zach Nelson, CEO of Netsuite, a San Mateo, Calif.-based rival of Salesforce.com in an e-mail message. Nelson says Netsuite has never missed its service-level agreement and has delivered "greater than 99.9% uptime" in the last 18 months.

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