The recent outages on Dropbox are not from attempts at hacking into the system, according to the online storage company. The service went down on Friday, causing panic to those who needed to access their files.
By Sunday afternoon, most of the users had full access to the files. However, it was worrying for many, especially since there was no word about the maintenance beforehand. Around five percent of customers were struggling to sync files through their desktop form of the services while 20 percent struggled with the mobile version. It took about five and a half hours for full access to everyone to be available.
The photos tab remained off while most users gained access. However, photos were still available through the desktop client or the main website by accessing the file tab.
The initial problems, which hit at around 6:40 PM Pacific time, were due to internal maintenance. This was not expected to affect the service for users. Dropbox did announce the issue through its blog and attempted to keep users up to date. Users would have to know that there was a blog to check for the updates. Those who knew about it left comments thanking the company for the way the updates were handled to keep customers in the loop.
Within the two hours that it took to get the facility back up and running, rumors of a hacking attempt spread. However, Dropbox took straight to its blog to announce that the outages were definitely not from a hacking attempt, assuring everybody that all files and information were safe. The next day, the company repeated their assurances that no files were lost as a result of the unexpected maintenance problems.
While offering periodic updates, Dropbox worked endlessly to restore full access for everybody. At the same time, the server upgrade continued to happen. After the problems were resolved, the company returned to its blog to share the reason for the outages. Servers were being upgraded, but a bug meant that these upgrades were installed on various other servers unexpectedly. This caused the whole system to crash.
The photos tab was the last to be restored and may still cause issues for the odd user. This is something that the storage giant is still working on to return back to normal for everybody.
Many people may worry about this issue happening again. Dropbox is used on a daily basis for many people, so any downtime is problematic. The company announced that new tools and checks are being put in place, which will help to prevent something like this from recurring.
A third blog announcement was posted to explain the issue in detail, including everything that the company had learned. This is important as it helps Dropbox create the specific tools to prevent these problems in the future. It also holds the company accountable for the issues.
All files are safe and the majority of customers will now have full access. There may still be issues here and there but the company is working on them. The good news is that the outages were not due to a hacking attempt but happened because Dropbox is working on improving the system for all.
By Alexandria Ingham