Internet outages continue in frequency and new reports are coming out saying the Internet is running out of space. Is this a true statement and is the Internet near capacity?
News reports continue to circulate claiming a imminent danger is coming as the Internet nears its choking point because the amount of connections climb higher and higher. Several big sites were taken down last week due to a infrastructure issue on the west coast of the US. Sites like Facebook, eBay, and LinkedIn all had downtime as some aging hardware finally met its day.
The main issue was on the amount of concurrent attachments or connections to routers on a global basis. Old hardware that was years past its time finally failed and ran out of memory.
The process is like dominoes and when one router fails it can send errors to other routers everywhere to do the same thing.
A major problem on the latest Internet outages came from a full TCAM memory of 512,000 entry spaces that act like a address book. This event has now became known as the 512k bug. When the memory filled to the limit at a internet service provider in California, the leak was sent to other internet service providers in the area causing them all to falter offline and hang.
Rumor has it that these internet service providers have known about this problem and that the day was coming when it would happen. The same providers have been slow to fix these issues with upgraded hardware. Cisco networking sent a alert last Spring to internet service providers about the issue.
Value changes and a reboot is all that is usually required to immediately fix a router that is filled to capacity, yet these internet providers know that trying to satisfy all of their clients for a good time to take down the Internet is near impossible and instead everyone found out the hard way that maintenance is needed to prevent further outages from happening again.