back to article PC World, Currys, Dixons websites all go titsup

The websites of Dixons Retail Group electronics stores have gone down today - knocking over Currys, PC World and The sites have been offline since breakfast, but there's been some confusion about the cause of the outage. Initially visitors to the Currys' site had a "503 Unavailable Error" page pop up, then a …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Mad rush to buy Sinclair Spectrums

    That's what it will be.

    1. Lee Dowling Silver badge

      Re: Mad rush to buy Sinclair Spectrums

      Probably not. But they would sell you a headphone cable for the EAR IN socket that costs more than the machine itself.

      I was once given a £5 Dixons voucher as a present. After two years, I threw it away because I couldn't buy ANYTHING with it and didn't want to give them any of my own money on top. Literally. Nothing. Not a USB cable, not a battery, nothing.

    2. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      Re: Mad rush to buy Sinclair Spectrums

      Nah, it's everyone wanting to get of the new Transformer primes...

  2. IT Hack
    IT Angle

    Cable Cuts

    So they have dedicated fibre for their websites? How does that work?

    1. Shakje

      Re: Cable Cuts

      Maybe it was the fibre leading to their datacentre?

      1. IT Hack

        Re: Cable Cuts

        With no redundancy?

        1. An0n C0w4rd

          Re: Cable Cuts

          Even if they bought diverse fibre, telco's quite frequently "groom" fibres to "optimise" their utilisation as people cancel contracts, etc, and you suddenly find both your "diverse" paths travel down the same cable bundle. Unless you frequently audit your suppliers you WILL have this happen to you.

          I've even heard of companies that go to different suppliers to get different paths ended up going down as the two suppliers both had fibre going through one tunnel as the best way to get from A to B. The rest of the paths were diverse, but they found out the single point of failure when something cut the cables in the tunnel......

          1. M_W

            Re: Cable Cuts

            The phrase that pays is 'Assured Seperacy' - and talking nicely to the Openreach planners when they come to do the surveys.

            I think the IT director of DSG will probably be looking at a P45 tomorrow as the amount of money they'll have lost will have dwarfed the amount they would have paid for a proper diverse internet link.

            And why don't they have a load balanced Business Continuity hosting site elsewhere in a data centre in case this happens?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Cable Cuts

          Without a word of a lie...

          I once worked in Incident Management for one of the major uk mobile telcos (Hint - They've been shopping today!)

          They lost connection to an Irish based datacentre with both routes showing as down. A little investigation showed that although they thought they had redundancy, utilising two routes from two different suppliers, those two different suppliers were using the same pipe!

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Cable Cuts

            I used to work for a major UK bank. We had triple redundant connections between the City offices and our major datacentres, all with assured redundancy, all with separate suppliers. Needless to say they all went down at the same time, for about an hour. It turned out that two of the three telcos had changed their configuration, without discussing it with each other and the inevitable goon had dropped a floor tile into a trunk of fibres.

            I was on the recovery call, I have never heard engineers and management beasted in quite the same way - it was costing us millions a minute in lost trades.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just about sums them all up really.


    1. Silverburn

      Re: Just about sums them all up really.

      Maybe they should have bought the "extended warranty".

      Oh wait.

  4. Sir Adam-All

    and a company the size of DSG has no resillience ???

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      probably like far too many companies, they had primary and backup links all going to the same exchange :)

  5. Ol'Peculier

    Not just them...

    No use looking at the Daily Telegraph's website for news about it either, that's throwing out 404's at the moment...

    1. DJV Silver badge

      Re: Not just them...

      Pity it's not the Sun as well as 404's would be an improvement in quality...

  6. ukgnome

    I wonder.....

    if they got their own tech guys to have a look at it.

    Eeek I hope not, it would cost squillions and end up not been able to connect to the network!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I wonder.....

      And they'll find questionable pictures of minors on the hard drive.

  7. Tony Dunlop

    Bad hair day all round

    At the last time of trying the entire Telegraph online is returning error 404 including the home page

    1. IT Hack

      Re: Bad hair day all round

      Telegraph is working for me...not that I actually read it mind ;)

  8. mrdalliard

    Should've bought...

    ...that extended warranty!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm willing to bet good money

    I'm willing to bet good money that El reg won't instantly report it when its own website falls over

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I'm willing to bet good money

      How will you know they haven't instantly reported it when the website is down? Doesn't mean the article hasn't been written and will be live when the public front end is fixed. :P

    2. Seanmon

      Re: I'm willing to bet good money

      I Invite you to think about what you just said there.

    3. Mr Young

      Re: I'm willing to bet good money

      I seem to vaguely remember the Reg promptly reported its very own email fuck up not so long ago? Anyway - I'd probably not bet on my poor memory and I can't be arsed finding a link;

    4. Chris Tierney

      Re: I'm willing to bet good money

      It will, and the title will be "404 Error Page not found"

  10. Da Weezil

    Strangely the Post Office site only seems to be available in mobile format... no use for me wanting to look up the new FUP announced over the weekend - I wonder if that is connected?

  11. Qdos

    If standards of web maintenance are allied to the standards of computer servicing at PC World then it's simply amazing the site's ever been on it's feet at all... :/

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lets hope they aren't using Mastercare or whatever the in-house repair service is called, or it'll take months of bad repairs, return to base, going missing before they give up.

  13. andreas koch

    They seem to be advertising

    for the VLC media player...

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Website closure usually indicates the receivers are on the way.

    Good luck with that extended warranty you bought.

  15. mrfill


    Have they tried switching it off and switching it back on again?

  16. Anonymous John

    "Registered on: 13-Nov-1996

    Renewal date: 13-Nov-2012

    Last updated: 28-Jul-2011|"

    So it's not that, then.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why don't they have redundant links?

    Because they don't knowhow.

  18. npo4

    I wonder how many sales they've lost because of this...

    Serves them right probably

    1. andreas koch


      Five, two for screenwipes and three for vacuum cleaner bags.

  19. AlexS

    It's back online

    World saved.

  20. Duffaboy

    Don't Panic the Tech Guys are working on it

    It will be up sometime soon as their techguys are on the case.

  21. Duffaboy

    Not gone Wireless ?

    Or maybe bought a surge protector

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