updated 03:45 pm EDT, Mon August 20, 2007
Skype outage via Windows
A recent, two-day outage of the Skype VoIP service -- coming shortly after the launches of new Mac and PC versions -- has been blamed on a coincidental timing with Microsoft's Windows Update, writes the Associated Press. The problem reportedly stemmed from a Microsoft security update, which prompted many users to restart their computers simultaneously. This in turn led to an abundance of login requests, which flooded Skype and peer-to-peer services, ultimately leading to a total network overload.
Microsoft has responded by saying that the problem has nothing to do with its own technology, but rather a bug in Skype's software.
The outage likely had significant worldwide impact, as Skype often has an average of five to six million users online at a time, and in rare circumstances as much as nine million. Users can be found in countries from Brazil and the United States through to Vietnam; Skype is owned by eBay, the world's largest auction website.