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Six Things To Know About the Latest Microsoft Cloud Outage

Azure Active Directory, Microsoft’s popular identity and access management service, stopped working Monday afternoon after an engineer attempted a code change, locking users across the U.S. out of their cloud-based apps

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What Happened?

 On its status page, Microsoft said customers encountered errors attempting to authenticate logins to Microsoft 365, Azure, Dynamics 365, and custom applications using its Azure Active Directory single sign-on service.

Only users not already signed-in saw those authentication request failures.

The preliminary analysis found “a combination of three separate and unrelated issues” behind the problem: a code defect in a service update; a tooling error in the Azure AD safe deployment system that impacted regional scoping; a code defect in Azure AD’s rollback mechanism, which delayed an attempt to revert the service update.

The outage mostly affected customers in the Americas because the problem was “exacerbated by load,” Microsoft said, though other regions may have also seen disruptions.

In an email update sent to administrators impacted by the outage, Microsoft said: “a code issue caused a portion of our infrastructure to experience delays processing authentication requests, which prevented users from being able to access multiple M365 services.”

Microsoft is “reviewing our code” to understand what caused applications to “stop processing authentication requests in a timely fashion.”

The cloud giant promised a post-incident report within five business days.

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