A traffic routing fault with backbone provider Optus has seen large New Zealand providers and their customers unable to reach popular content delivery network (CDN) Limelight. Limelight is used by popular game services such as Valve and Steam, as well as Microsoft’s Xbox Live. Social media sites such as LiveJournal also use Limelight. According to a message sent out by ISP Slingshot’s support staff, the affected providers in New Zealand include itself, Telecom and Orcon. The fault prevented access to Limelight for around four days. Orcon spokesman Duncan Blair confirmed the problem, saying the issue was with access to the Limelight CDN from the provider. As of going to press, Orcon had no estimate for when the issue would be sorted out. Blair says that Orcon has put in a temporary workaround for the problem that gives access to Limelight content for customers, provided the ISP’s name servers are used. Alternatively, Blair says people can use Google’s name servers as a temporary measure. By doing so, users will connect to Limelight’s servers in the United States and not Australia and New Zealand, thus bypassing the routing fault. Content Delivery Networks such as Limelight and Akamai are used by popular Internet sites to improve performance as well as to reduce traffic congestion by serving up content from servers geographically close to users. Optus was contacted by Computerworld for comment, but didn’t respond.
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