In recent days, Cloudflare, a major web infrastructure and website security company, has been wrestling with several service outages. On October 30, an update rollout to its globally distributed key-value store, Workers KV, went awry, plunging all Cloudflare services into a 37-minute-long outage1. Just a few days later, on November 2, 2023, another outage occurred, impacting many of Cloudflare's products, including its dashboard and related application programming interfaces (APIs)2.
The company pinpointed a power failure at its core North American data center as the catalyst for the November 2 outage. While this hiccup was partial, with most of Cloudflare's services remaining unaffected, it nevertheless posed significant challenges3. Cloudflare's reaction to the power loss was swift, as it aimed to assess the impacts on its data centers and work on a fix, all while failing over services to maintain as much functionality as possible4.
The situation escalated on November 4, 2023, when Cloudflare began experiencing either complete or partial outages across different services, further including its dashboard and APIs5. As Cloudflare scurries to restore its services to normalcy, these incidents underscore the vulnerabilities even major internet services business face, and the cascading effects such outages can have on the myriad websites and online services reliant on Cloudflare's infrastructure.