YouTube is Gone

I’m seeing reports around the web now that YouTube is completely down for everyone, but I haven’t seen any word as to what’s up. Very strange for a major site to just go completely offline like that.

Update: Do these strange server names have anything to do with it, or is it just that no one has ever noticed them before?

This is the best thread I’ve found on the problem so far.

Update, 9:44 AM ET: As I suspected might be the case, the odd server names might not have anything at all to do with it. Check out this lookup for microsoft.com.

Update, 10:16 AM ET: Take a look at the comments below. The Open Cubicle claimed that Google had let the registration expire, and Klaus dug up the whois info that shows that the YouTube.com record was indeed updated this morning.

Update, 10:28 AM ET: All clear! It just started working for me again.

Update, 11:04 AM ET: In the comments below, David Moylan explains the “hacked” results:

when you do a “whois” lookup, by default it shows all domains which contain the string you are searching for. some providers decide to filter this information out because it is confusing. those other domains which show up for youtube.com can also be seen if you use iptools to lookup microsoft.com and other popular sites. they have been registered many years ago and are not related to the specific domain you are seaching for.

Update, 11:06 AM ET: Once again, David Moylan has great input in the comments below:

i diagnosed the problem when i first noticed youtube was down many hours ago. the domain was in perfect order, but the two registered nameservers were not responding to any requests. irrespective of the domain status, the nameservers should have been responding to DIRECT requests.

If their two registered name servers were not responding to requests, that certainly would explain what the problem was. Interested to hear why they weren’t responding, though. Hopefully we’ll hear from Google (or someone) on that soon.


Comments


  • The Open Cubicle

    May 3, 2008
    at 8:26 am

    The registration expired. Google took over YouTube and forgot when it was going to expire and now it down. It will take at least 2 hours for everything to sync ack together.


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 8:29 am

    No way. I know I’ve done that before, but Google?


     

  • Klaus

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:09 am

    Not according to NetworkSolutions:

    Administrative Contact, Technical Contact:
    YouTube, Inc. xm36972c7ks@networksolutionsprivateregistration.com
    ATTN: YOUTUBE.COM
    c/o Network Solutions
    P.O. Box 447
    Herndon, VA 20172-0447
    570-708-8780

    Record expires on 15-Feb-2009.
    Record created on 15-Feb-2005.
    Database last updated on 3-May-2008 09:05:51 EDT.

    Still a bit odd it has not just been renewed for 10 years or whatever the limit is these days.


     

  • David Moylan

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:15 am

    oh please. did you bother to do a whois lookup before posting this “registration expired” gem?

    the domain expiry is 15-FEB-2009.

    this whole “something was overlooked by google and youtube” is just fiction.

    their nameservers are down. their domain name has not been “hacked” and the domain has not expired.


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:15 am

    @Klaus: that actually seems like it might support The Open Cubicle’s claim. Notice that the database was updated this morning right at the time all these problems started.

    @David: with the long grace period that all domains get, it’s totally conceivable that the domain just finally stopped working this morning and someone working in the middle of the night at Google just quickly renewed it for a year to try to get things back up. That’s why the current expire date would be 1 year in the future and why it would be back-dated to Feb 15, the date it technically expired, instead of May 3.


     
  • [...] Anyway, I was really pleased to learn more about the outage via Shane’s blog as, when I’d searched for news about it on the web, I hadn’t been able to find anything. [...]


     

  • Elliott

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:31 am

    Great theories and insights into this problem with You Tube. I am wondering if all of the severe weather has affected something in the networks or datahouses someplace?


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:36 am

    It’s definitely possible, but I’d be very surprised since I’m sure Google’s got so much redundancy that a datacenter could be completely destroyed without anyone noticing.


     

  • cornexo

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:38 am

    @shane when a domain is brought out of redemption, the original date of registration remains.


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:41 am

    @cornexo: yes, sorry. That’s what I was trying to communicate with my “back-dated” comment, but you said it much better than I did :)


     

  • Ruitu

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:41 am

    Might be IPTools hacked somewhere :), domains stuff looks clean for YouTube.

    http://knowledgeexplosion.info/index.php/Personal/2008/05/03/youtube_down_since_saturday_morning


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:43 am

    @Ruitu: Maybe :) I tried it for many different domains and found some that did look “hacked” (e.g. cnn.com) and others that didn’t.


     

  • David Moylan

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:48 am

    @shane regardless of whether or not the domain actually expired or was suspended, the actual nameservers (located at youtube/google) would be functioning. i noticed from my logs today that the youtube.com domain was updated multiple times, yet it wasn’t until later they they resolved their internal nameserver issue. cheers.


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:49 am

    @David: their name servers may have been working fine, but if the root servers weren’t sending lookups to them (i.e. the grace period was over and the registrar finally turned off the name), it wouldn’t have mattered.

    Have you seen somewhere that someone went straight to their name servers and found them inoperable, or had you tried that yourself? I could definitely see that being that case.


     

  • David Moylan

    May 3, 2008
    at 9:50 am

    @ruitu nobody has been hacked. when you do a “whois” lookup, by default it shows all domains which contain the string you are searching for. some providers decide to filter this information out because it is confusing. those other domains which show up for youtube.com can also be seen if you use iptools to lookup microsoft.com and other popular sites. they have been registered many years ago and are not related to the specific domain you are seaching for.


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:02 am

    @David: that’s a great explanation for the “hacked” results and certainly makes sense. Thanks! I have updated the post above.


     

  • David Moylan

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:03 am

    @shane i diagnosed the problem when i first noticed youtube was down many hours ago. the domain was in perfect order, but the two registered nameservers were not responding to any requests. irrespective of the domain status, the nameservers should have been responding to DIRECT requests. i understand if the domain was in a state of suspension that the base nameservers would have not been resolvable, but this still would not prevent direct access to the nameservers themselves. this is essentially why a domain can “stay alive” for an extended period of time even after grace expires.


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:05 am

    @David: well there you go. If their two registered name servers weren’t responding to requests, that would certainly be the primary issue. Thanks! And I’ll update the post above once again :)


     

  • Ruitu

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:05 am

    @David

    I believe they might be editing the domain names to avoid spammer attacks. Well, YouTube is back now :)


     

  • David Moylan

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:10 am

    @shane @ruitu my personal belief is that some poor soul at youtube/google has been sweating hard over the past few hours. being a support engineer myself, i can already picture some dude pacing the floor in the early AM of today sweating it and muttering “crap … the nameservers *WON’T BOOT* and my backup *DOESN’T WORK*”. it wouldn’t surprise me if a broken raid card, router or some “misconfiguration” (read as: erased config!) was the core fault of this outage. always remember that most problems have 10 fingers attached :-)


     

  • Shane

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:11 am

    HA! That’s not hard to picture at all. Man, I’ve certainly been there.


     

  • David Moylan

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:17 am

    @shane one last comment regarding network solutions and their “database last updated” line. this isn’t the last date/time that the DOMAIN data was updated, it’s actually designed to show you how fresh the result from the WHOIS query is. i just did a whole pile of WHOIS requests for youtube.com and watched the time increment! also of interest was that one of the whois lookups in the middle had a time of a few hours prior, so this was obviously slightly older cached data being returned by a different box. i only just worked this out now and thought it might be interesting for further reference. cheers :-)


     

  • Ruitu

    May 3, 2008
    at 10:20 am

    LOL…surely a rememberable weekend for YouTube folks oops Google folks :D


     

  • Ilia

    May 3, 2008
    at 1:45 pm

    OMG! The end of the world is near! :D


     

  • Kelly

    May 8, 2008
    at 1:21 am

    In my country Youtube has been several times being banned for a short period. I am not so clear what was the reason…So, I thought Youtube was gone yesterday because of this problem too.