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3 lessons from the 2021 Facebook outage for network professionals

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3 lessons from the 2021 Facebook outage for network professionals

Border Gateway Protocol, or BGP, was an early suspect in Facebook’s recent global outage, one of the biggest and worst in the social media giant’s history.

On October 4, 2021, Facebook — now meta — and its subsidiaries, including Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp, disappeared from the Internet and remained unreachable for about six hours. Public speculation quickly arose — much of it on Twitter, where social media users flocked in the absence of Facebook — that the outage may have been the result of a BGP glitch.

Tweet from Twitter
Since Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp were all unavailable, users flocked to Twitter.

But according to Facebook, BGP and DNS issues were just symptoms of the real problem: a misconfiguration that caused the company’s backbone routers to disconnect. In other words, to err is human.

“The cause of this was fingers,” said Terry Slattery, chief architect at consultancy NetCraftsmen.

How Did the Facebook Outage Happen in 2021?

During routine maintenance on the backbone network, a technician trying to assess capacity was commanded and triggered a cascade of technical problems, according to Santosh Janardhan, Facebook’s Vice President of Engineering and Infrastructure. He put in a blog post that an internal audit tool should have stopped the misconfiguration, but a software bug caused the audit to fail. The erroneous command executed through the backbone routers and disconnected from Facebook’s data centers.

That in turn caused the secondary DNS and BGP issues. When the company’s DNS servers were unable to communicate with the data centers, they automatically retracted their BGP route ads, essentially removing themselves from the virtual map of the Internet. Suddenly it was as if Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp didn’t exist.

To make matters worse, Facebook’s internal operational tools rely on the company’s own infrastructure and DNS to function. As a result, employees were unable to access the systems they normally use to work and communicate, and network personnel were unable to remotely investigate or resolve the outage using their usual methods.

Tweet from Ryan Mac
Ryan Mac of the New York Times reported that Facebook’s internal tools were also unavailable during the October 4, 2021 outage.

Gartner analyst Andrew Lerner likened this unfortunate sequence of events to sawing off a tree branch while standing on it. Jonathan Zittrain, professor at Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, tweeted that Facebook “basically locked its keys in the car”.

Engineers eventually had to get into Facebook’s data centers to manually debug and reset routers and servers. But an employee told Sheera Frenkel, a reporter at The New York Times, that employees could not gain physical access to company facilities because the electronic badge system failed. Even under normal circumstances, Facebook’s data centers and network hardware are heavily fortified, Janardhan said. So it took time to get the right people on site.

Tweet from Sheera Frenkel
A source told The New York Times’ Sheera Frenkel that the 2021 outage will have banned Facebook employees from company facilities.

But first, network hygiene

Lerner said he’s received several calls from network leaders asking what they can learn from the 2021 Facebook outage. But he warned that before worrying about these kinds of cascading super-failures, companies should first check that they follow basic hygiene practices. observe the network. “I’ll be honest, most organizations don’t do the fundamental things,” Lerner said.

He said those fundamental tasks should include:

Once they’ve covered the basics, organizations can turn their attention to cautionary tales that make headlines, he said.

What can businesses learn from the 2021 Facebook outage?

According to experts, network professionals can learn the following lessons from the Facebook outage.

1. Expect the worst

Creative pessimism can be a virtue when it comes to avoiding super-failures. Lerner suggested that IT professionals look for possible single points of failure within their networks and imagine how they could cause cascading outages. For example, if an organization relies on a particular security intelligence and event management platform for network troubleshooting, it should consider what would happen if that resource were no longer available. Other common points of failure include authentication and, as in the case of the Facebook outage, DNS.

If you can’t handle a failure that you orchestrated yourself, then it will be difficult for you to handle a real emergency when it arises.

Terry SlatteryNetCraftsmen

2. Plan for the Worst

Experts agreed that companies should also do regular table exercises, simulating how they would react to a network outage like Facebook has experienced.

“The Facebook Scenario Suggests Companies Should Look At” real disaster recovery — what happens if our infrastructure is not usable?” said NetCraftsmen’s Slattery.

He added that a feasible contingency plan may depend on out-of-band network access — independent of potential single points of failure, such as DNS — that technicians can operate using primarily manual processes. (Facebook said its own out-of-band network failed during the October 2021 outage, but didn’t explain why.)

3. Put those plans to the test

Slattery suggested taking contingency planning a step beyond simulation exercises with active failure tests. Similar to Netflix’s Chaos Monkey or in cybersecurity penetration testing, active failure testing involves intentionally introducing a real – albeit contained and controlled – failure into the network. That may mean removing a link or a router to discover architectural vulnerabilities and test remediation processes.

But most organizations instinctively hate and avoid error testing, Slattery added. Such exercises require extensive preparation in advance, and network teams often worry that the exercises could lead to real-world failures. But therein, according to Slattery, lies their greatest value. “If you can’t handle a failure that you orchestrated yourself, then it becomes difficult for you to handle a real emergency when it arises,” he said.

Lerner, who has himself before called for a network version of Netflix’s Chaos Monkey, said companies typically strive for long periods of high availability in which nothing breaks. However, he said he thinks that strategy is misguided, because those periods often mask inherent instability and vulnerability. When a problem eventually arises, it tends to create a domino effect.

“Most of the really annoying failures in the enterprise are these cascading outages,” Lerner said.

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Comfortable and dry weather this week, rain returns over the weekend

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Comfortable and dry weather this week, rain returns over the weekend

SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – This week is in for a treat as we will have comfortable and dry weather through Friday, we will pay for the great weather by dealing with some rain for the coming weekend.

Cold air will greet the early risers today as temperatures at dawn will be in the 30s and low 40s. The wet ground from the recent rain and cool temperatures is allowing some patchy to dense fog to form, it won’t be a widespread problem but valleys and lowland areas will see some dense fog until 8am

High temperatures expected on Monday afternoon

A subtle weather change today will have a big impact on our weather this week. The wind will shift from the northeast to the south today. This will start a warming trend that will continue for the rest of the week. Highs should be comfortably above 60 this afternoon with a light breeze from the southeast at 5 to 10 miles per hour. After breaking through the morning fog in some areas, it will be sunny in the afternoon and early evening with clear skies at night.

CLICK HERE to see more predictions from Futurecast.

The south wind will bring a warming trend for the day and night. Mornings will generally remain cool, but tonight’s lows are forecast to be in the 40s, we may not see 30 degree temperatures for the rest of the week.

Monday night on Tuesday morning forecast low temperatures

Peaks will be in the low 70s under partly cloudy skies Tuesday, with mostly sunny to partly cloudy weather expected to continue through Friday. Highlights will be in the mid to upper 70s Wednesday through Friday.

Our next cold front is approaching the ArkLaTex late Friday, it’s possible we’ll see some rain late in the day, but for now I’ll leave the Friday forecast dry. This front will move into the ArkLaTex on Saturday, bringing with it a series of showers and thunderstorms throughout the day, with some rain lasting through Sunday. Saturday appears to be the day with the most weather as there is a chance that the rain will clear quickly enough to keep Sunday dry in many areas. If you have outdoor plans this weekend, stay tuned for the weather forecast throughout the week.


Get exclusive severe weather details about storms as they approach your area with download the Arklatex Weather Authority app now available in the App Store and Google Play

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COVID Gourmand: Restaurant Guide Published by Beijing CDC

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COVID Gourmand: Restaurant Guide Issued By Beijing CDC

Last Friday, foodies and restaurateurs alike held their breath on my WeChat moments after Beijing’s CDC released the travel history of a person who came to Beijing from Shanghai and then tested positive for COVID-19, fearing this unexpected news could lead to yet another round of tightened restrictions on the capital’s already suffering F&B industry. Fortunately, as they have done so many times in the past, once the city identified where the traveler had eaten during their stay, the city took swift action and massively conducted nucleic acid tests on the restaurant staff. At the time of going to press, all those tests were negative and since then the required two-week incubation period has passed, meaning it is relatively safe for these restaurants to reopen.

Perhaps even more surprising, however, is that the list of restaurants visited by the infected person and their travel group ended up attracting even more attention than the case itself, as it was part of a carefully mapped out itinerary. Many of my friends therefore decided to repeat their tour of Suzhou, with several museums, communities with traditional architecture and immaculate gardens. Entertaining, instead of continuing with their tour the culture passing through the capital, this particular group decided to roam the city and stop at several hidden gem restaurants where they partook in delicacies and booze. Despite the fact that Beijing is often referred to as a culinary desert, these adventurers clearly knew their way around the city’s food scene and where to find some sparkling oases. So let’s go through this list and see what the restaurants have to offer.

Nuoyan

still thinking baijiu is the end of the Chinese libation culture? Then you might want to pay a visit to this small bistro. Hidden in the hutongs near Beixinqiao, Nuoyan is a go-to place for those looking to get lost in the diverse world that is rice wine, which can be much milder than its famously strong cousin. This slightly sweet drink is generally softer and can even be considered a weekday drink for those who want to drink socially. Not to mention, it’s more versatile when combined with food. At Nuoyan you can order a test flight with an arsenal of classic and new products.

For example, they have a rose rice wine that really lives up to its name, with a floral scent that blossoms from the infused drink. With a sip of this slightly sour, slightly sweet flower dew, the aroma reaches the tip of your tongue and flows through the body. Conversely, if you prefer a more traditional taste, clear rice wine and osmanthus-scented rice wine are also on the menu.

Aside from the drinks, Nuoyan offers a tapas menu of dishes specifically designed to enhance the flavor of the rice wine, such as stir-fried conch, marinated tofu, or roasted chicken. No wonder those travelers stayed here from 5pm to midnight.

M of course

Located on the third floor of Taikooli’s Nali Patio, I don’t suspect M Natural is a strange name for foodies or those who live in Sanlitun. It is known for a bold, fun menu inspired by diverse culinary cultures from around the world. And at a time when the word “fusion” is nothing more than a gimmick used by restaurants too lazy to deliver authentic regional flavors, M Natural is one of the few to understand the depth of its meaning and secret chemical reactions. between ingredients with different cultural backgrounds.

In addition to the seasonal wines featured on their drinks menu, M Natural – as the name suggests – is also famous for its natural wine selection. This emerging new winemaking trend is still a rarity in China, but has gradually expanded in the market with unique and wild flavors that are a product of manual harvesting techniques, as well as other requirements such as minimal human intervention in the fermentation process, and minimal or no artificial additives used during production.

Loneliness

The name of this restaurant is derived from the owner’s experience of completing four quarantines in a year due to frequent travel between France and China. Fear not though, as you won’t feel isolated in a quarantine cell when dining here. Rather, the food served is familiar home style with heartwarming service to boot, making you feel like you’re dining at a good friend’s house.

As you browse Solitude’s menu, you may notice the influence of French cuisine and the inspiration that comes from the owner’s world-traveling adventures. However, it is probably the impressive wine cabinet that catches everyone’s attention when entering the restaurant – a wide collection that ensures there is always a first choice for every occasion.

Hai Jing Ge

Finally, a restaurant on the west side of town earned its spot on this list. Compared to the previous restaurants and gastropubs, Hai Jing Ge remains closer to the diverse landscape of traditional Chinese gastronomy. Their menu features many regional delicacies, especially from southern China, including Anhui bamboo and canton steamed grouper.

Since it’s further from downtown, the dining experience at Hai Jing Ge offers diners a rare serenity often hard to find in a thriving metropolis like Beijing. And it’s only a short drive to the Summer Palace, making it the perfect place to spend some quality free time when out and about.

Read: EAT: Cheese fondue, Winter Happenings at Migas, Vegan Brunch at Zarah

Images: Dianping

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Amazon has slashed prices to 45 percent on Oral-B electric toothbrushes — but only for Cyber ​​Monday

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Amazon has slashed prices to 45 percent on Oral-B electric toothbrushes — but only for Cyber ​​Monday

We may receive commission for purchases made through links on this page. Prices and availability are subject to change.

The question is, which toothbrush do you choose?  (Photo: Amazon)

The question is, which toothbrush do you choose? (Photo: Amazon)

Keeping your teeth sparkling clean isn’t a one-time thing – it requires routine maintenance and regular careful brushing. And while you can use a regular, old manual toothbrush, many people find it easier to do a thorough cleaning with an electric brush.

Of course, those powerful devices cost money. Just for Cyber ​​Monday, Amazon has slashed prices Top Rated Oral-B Electric Toothbrushes and electric brush heads up to 45 percent! This is finally your chance to get on the electric toothbrush train at a significant discount.

Note: You can get your hands on a new one Oral-B Powered Toothbrush in two days with Amazon Prime. No member? Register here for all the entertainment and shopping benefits Amazon offers. Member now? Buy a new toothbrush in no time and have cleaner, white teeth as soon as possible.

Don’t miss these offers.

Whiter teeth, straight ahead!  (Photo: Amazon)

Whiter teeth, straight ahead! (Photo: Amazon)

The little gadget is so smart it’s an insult to call it a toothbrush. The Oral-B 8000 Electronic Electric Toothbrush with Rechargeable Battery is more like having a robot dentist living on your counter, except it’s not as scary as it sounds.

The device takes it upon itself to target the most important areas of your mouth, while tracking and correcting your brushing habits (for example, letting you know when you’re brushing too hard). It also sends real-time feedback to an app.

The replaceable brush heads oscillate, rotate and pulse in one of six personalized settings to remove up to 500 percent more plaque than a regular toothbrush – it even has pressure sensors that automatically slow down brushing speed and visually warn you to protect gums from over-brushing. Choose from four different colors: white, black, orchid, and rose gold. They are so beautiful that you can even use them as a Christmas present for your SO

“After years of using a Sonicare, I am more than thrilled to have switched to the Oral B 8000 with round brush heads,” a satisfied customer said. “This electric toothbrush system is so superior I can see and feel a significant difference. The round brush reaches all areas, so much easier to clean the back teeth and behind my lower lower teeth. I don’t feel any plaque anymore and teeth are definitely whiter The oscillation system is a significant improvement over sonic. My teeth feel like I’ve left the dental hygienist every day and this brush system and Crest 3D white make them look whiter.”

$95 $180 at Amazon

This toothbrush does almost everything.  (Photo: Amazon)

This toothbrush does almost everything. (Photo: Amazon)

Do you really want to splash on an electric toothbrush? The Oral-B iO Seriess 8 lis basically the Cadillac of electric toothbrushes, and does everything except brushing for you. This brush offers specialized pressure sensing that signals red when you’re brushing too hard and green when things are just right. It features a screen to motivate you while you brush and customize your brushing experience. A dentist-inspired round brush with twisted bristles reaches all parts of your mouth, while live coaching helps you clean just right. Choose a black, Violet or white theme — they’re all discounted!

“I can’t describe how [much] daily brushing improves this brush. Always clean and easy to operate. Worth the money,” a satisfied customer said.

$175 $280 at Amazon

The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.

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