Ihug yesterday experienced possibly its worst outage since the service launched. Not only were customers unable to access their email or internet services, but the Ihug website crashed and the Ihug call centre was unable to accept calls.
The outage, which apparently started after maintenance work carried out overnight, lasted until early afternoon. Ihug's broadband offerings were first to come back to life, followed by dial-up users. A message on Ihug's network status page says the company apologises for the inconvenience.
"We sincerely apologise for the extended nature of this outage. Regretfully the fault was caused by a hardware failure to a crucial piece of equipment that lies at the very core of our network."
Email service was out all morning. However, no email messages were lost during the outage. Ihug's website warned users to expect a delay of three to four hours while mail servers worked overtime to catch up with the backlog.
One Ihug customer, who did not wish to be named, says the company should be more careful with its maintenance work.
"They scheduled it to be finished at 6am and that's cutting it too fine. Everyone coming in to work logging on seems to have knocked it over."
The customer says not being able to contact anyone at Ihug was "incredibly frustrating".
"I think their call centre is partially IP enabled so it was caught up in the whole shut down. That's something to think about with mission critical call centres."
Nobody at Ihug was available for comment at IDGNet's deadline. Co-founder Tim Wood's voice mail said Wood was "on sick leave" for the rest of the day. Co-founder Nick Wood did not return IDGNet's calls.