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  1. #1
    IncGamers News Service
    Join Date
    Apr 2013

    Diablo 3 Downtime and Fan Rage

    Yesterday's routine weekly Diablo 3 maintenance proved a bit less routine than usual. Whenthe realms came back up many people were unable to log in. This required Blizzard to take down all of the realms for emergency maintenance. That took 6 hours, and afterwards everything was fine.

    Gamers who were out all day, or on vacation, or who just didn't try to play Diablo 3 during that time never even noticed. Some other players did...

    Urgent Game Maintenance - #1 - 2013/06/18 07:00:00 PM

    In order to help address issues with players being able to connect and stay connected to the game, we have brought all Diablo III servers offline in the Americas for urgent maintenance. We currently anticipate that this maintenance period will last approximately 6 hours, concluding around 6:00 p.m. PDT. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this maintenance will cause, and will provide another update once all servers are back online.

    2013/06/19 01:03:00 AM --
    Maintenance is complete. Thank you for your patience. [source][/source]

    I included the time stamps since it's cool to note the time; 6 hours and 3 minutes between posts. Even a hater would have to admit they did a good job keeping to their "approximately 6 hours" estimate.

    The 'extended maintenance' isn't really what concerns me. Servers go down, stuff breaks, whatever.

    What concerns me is that Blizzard is pushing almost 20 YEARS OF NETWORKING EXPERIENCE from the original Bnet and they STILL can't manage to keep their servers up and running, even with weekly maintenance.

    It took WoW almost a DECADE to become stable. Will D3 share the same fate? Blizz, at what point do you ask yourself 'we need some help'?

    There are plenty of companies with much higher data loads that manage to stay up and running. Any hosting company that's <99% uptime is garbage. D3 is significantly less than 99% uptime.

    You make great games, but you really should put greed to the side and spend a little more of your IRL gold and build a legitimate network.

    Vaeflare: This thread is being locked because it's non-constructive.

    If you would like additional information regarding today's game maintenance, please keep tabs on the following thread: Urgent Game Maintenance - 06/18/2013.[source][/source]

    I suppose at some point it will become reasonable to expect 99% uptime from any online service. In my experience that time remains well in the future, as even websites are down for maintenance and repairs all the time, and most of those are stupid "serve data" systems. The more database and interactivity required, the more that can and eventually will go wrong, so I'm not surprised that has some technically issues. (Other things about often do surprise me, such as D3 requiring a year to finally get good social tools in v1.08, but that's a different issue.)

    Do you guys really think is uniquely lacking in technical competence, in the world of online gaming services? (A bit of perspective.) Is the Blizzard / Diablo community especially *****y? Is this Blizzard's price to pay for making games that people want to play constantly, thus making any downtime very noticeable?

  2. #2
    IncGamers Member
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    Jun 2003
    I think the poster might have been a little hostile, but he has a point. For as much money as Blizz makes, and as long as they\'ve been around providing online service for their games, their network infrastructure sure seems pretty pathetic. It\'s unreasonable to expect 100% uptime, but for as long as Blizzard has been around I don\'t think something like 95% uptime is out of the realm of possibility.

  3. #3
    IncGamers Member FnB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    BattleTag FleshNBlood-6108
    I think Blizz should be able to keep the servers running 24/7. If an ISP can stay up and running, then so should Blizz. They are a big enough Online Gaming Company to be their own ISP.
    The one i am with wouldn\'t have had 24hours downtime in the past 5 years that I\'ve been with them, and most of the people nation wide that they would supply a service to would be doing so over the country\'s old copper wire, and they have to pay another company for the rights to use it!

  4. #4
    Well, blizzard pretty much does have 98% uptime. If BNET is down for 1 third of one day a week for maintenance, that is 8/168 hours, or a little under 3% downtime. The problem, however, is they do that every. damned. week. They only ever DON\'T have maintenance when a big competing MMO comes out the same day, and shrug it off as coincidence that that day, the first in months, just happens to be a day that a simple restart 15 minutes works.

    And the worst part of all this, is that it happens until 2 PM on a tuesday for east coast. The servers go down pretty much RIGHT when people would be waking up and stay down for half of a persons waking day. Rather than do it in the dead of night, such as from say 2 AM to 8 AM, they do it 8 AM to 2 PM. Rather than inconvenience their maintenance staff one day a week by coming in late at night, they inconvenience every single customer every week for half a day.

    95% uptime doesn\'t count when technically us humans sleep through half your uptime, and your downtime intentionally occurs at the time when we are all awake. Then, the percent of uptime changes. Since they do maintenance for 6 hours that we\'d be awake, I will count their downtime vs actual awake-time (assuming a basic 8 hours and waking at 8 AM): 6/112. That comes to almost 6%. nearly doubles their downtime.

    And now I just did a math post for what was going to be a short rant. Guess I was mad about Blizzard\'s downtime yesterday. Of course, all of what I said ignores the fact that maybe once a month it\'s WAY longer than a simple 6 hour maintenance (6 hours? really?)

  5. #5
    Diablo: IncGamers Member mortuus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    considering how much money they make from wow and making games so long they go cheap on servers thats for damn sure and acts so suprised everytime they have to take them down rofl..

  6. #6
    IncGamers Member
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    May 2013
    land of no hope in the RNG
    BattleTag Boglav-2570
    Bnet is an OK service. While not great, it has to support more traffic than most I guess, and I\'m fine with the minor hiccups that often happen. And this comes from someone that hasn\'t played anything else but D3 since 15.05.2012. But I still have a life outside the game I guess..
    As for the *****ing, as Mitch Hedberg once put it, \"you can\'t please all the people all the time, and all of those people seem to be on bnet forums\".

  7. #7
    IncGamers Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Blizzard really has no excuse. Data Center. Network Clusters. Backup Servers. Two hours before maintenance, boot up the backup servers. An hour before maintenance, flip a switch that routes all logins/games to the Backup Servers. 30 minutes before maintenance, start broadcasting shutdown messages to any games still running on the servers that are going to be powered down for maintenance. At zero hour, boot anyone that did not exit, shutdown those servers.

    Anyone, at any time should be to able login and play. Even those that were kicked from their existing game should be able to re-login immediately. All logins are routed to the backup servers which are up and running, which are now the live servers, and the servers that were shutdown are now the backup. Rinse, repeat, and maintenance times and schedules are irrelevant. Take as much time as you need. Schedule them whenever you want.

    When Management has yachts and ownership stakes in sports teams, you cannot tell me they don\'t have the resources to provide a zero-downtime network infrastructure for their games.

  8. #8
    IncGamers Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    There have been weeks when there haven\'t been any maintenance periods, while others have had 1 or 2 unscheduled \"scheduled\" maintenance.

    I think this one didn\'t go over so well because of its duration, that it came just after a scheduled maintenance window, and because the bitter taste of 1.09 coming very late this year is still fresh in our minds.

  9. #9
    IncGamers Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Most companies that change or update software regularly have downtime. We want Blizzard to work on these games. The conveyancing program we use at our office is down every night at 11 and up at 6 am.

  10. #10
    IncGamers Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Eh, I was gonna play D3 last night, but the servers were down. I played PoE instead. Eh.


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