Tip: How to tell if there’s a problem with you, or Google, Facebook, or Wikipedia really aren’t working

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Everyone has met it before. You visit Facebook and nothing happens, the page does not load. Is the mistake with me, the operator, or the destination, you think? For the largest services, you can eliminate the first two options by visiting special diagnostic pages that show the status of the servers and their components.

Czech services usually do not do this, but large global ones do:

The status pages of all services are similar. Green typically indicates trouble-free operation, yellow possible problems, red indicates complete unavailability. Services will also often indicate when they have registered the problem, who is affected (often regional issues) and when everything has been fixed.

These links lead to the status pages of end services, but for example on Facebook or Twitter they are more useful for developers using their API, but they do not describe the status from the point of view of regular users. For example, Facebook may have an interface that allows you to use its account to log in to another website or application, but the social network itself will run.

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Example status page from Google

But often the closure can be somewhere in the middle. Smaller services are hosted in third-party clouds (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, Oracle) and go worldwide through special CDN distribution networks (Akamai, Cloudflare, Cloudfront, Fastly).

However, the average user simply does not know exactly where the data is flowing to him, so he can use third-party monitors. The best known is the Downdetector, which monitors the status of several hundred services. Its task is to monitor complaints about outages on social networks, which it then automatically verifies. If he finds that there is a complaint more than usual, the problem is obviously on the tax side of the service, not the user.

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When the CDN from Fastly dropped out, a large part of the Internet was suddenly recommended. That’s how Downdetector saw it



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