TelstraClear's network shaken by draft Martini

No sign of the rat as TelstraClear's outage upsets customers

It was TelstraClear's turn to suffer a large domestic network fault this Thursday, hot on the heels of Monday's Telecom nationwide network outage.

According to affected TelstraClear Domestic Internet Service (DIS) ISP customers ICONZ and Inspire Net the fault happened around midnight Thursday with up to 60% packet loss showing up on routes between Wellington and Auckland.

Although the fault lasted for some sixteen hours, ICONZ COO Sean Weekes says TelstraClear provided no information about the fault. Large ICONZ customers such as electronics and IT distributor Black Diamond Technologies in Wellington was affected, as well as access to internet auction site TradeMe and news site Stuff, as the traffic to both is carried over TelstraClear's Auckland to Wellington link.

James Watts, managing director of Inspire Net, says his ISP staff logged a fault with TelstraClear at three in the morning, but didn't get any information as to the fault resolution progress. Watts says Inspire Net was forced to switch over to Telecom's national network in order to keep traffic flowing for its customers.

TelstraClear spokesman Mathew Bolland says the problem was caused by issues with draft Martini tunnels used to transport OSI Layer 2 Ethernet frames over the telcos Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) network. He adds that the issue was very difficult to diagnose and that some ISPs were affected more than others. TelstraClear is undergoing a root cause analysis now, Bolland says, and doesn't have any further details of the exact cause of the problem yet.

Service was restored approximately at four o'clock on Thursday afternoon, by TelstraClear switching to a different L2 transport protocol than draft Martini.

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