CIRA To Go Offline For 24 Hours

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CIRA, the .ca registry, is taking their entire registry offline except for resolution services for 24 hours.

While most domain registries conduct scheduled maintenance that would impact the SRS at some level and for several hours at a time I don’t think I’ve ever seen a relatively large domain registry plan a 24 hour outage before.

You can read details of the outage on CIRA’s site.

There are a LOT of issues with such a long outage, but what I find decidedly odd is that they would schedule something like this on a weekday when the bulk of transactions (registrations / renewals / transfers) take place.

Effectively this outage means that all activity in .ca will be frozen for 24 hours. Odd and if you were active in .ca, very frustrating.

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9 Responses to CIRA To Go Offline For 24 Hours

  1. Byron June 5, 2012 at 11:57 pm #

    You are correct, 24 hours is a lengthy scheduled outage. I can assure you we did not take this decision lightly.

    Even though we started communicating this event (and the date) to the Registrar community back on Dec 2nd and many, many times since then, I think it is fair to say we could have done a better job explaining the “why” and the “what”.

    While the external impact of our middleware project may appear minimal, it is actually a very large internal project. In fact, it is safe to say that it is at least as large a project, if not larger, than the full registry re-write we did 2 years ago. Unfortunately since the community doesn’t “feel” the difference in the same way, there has been a perceived lack of understanding about how big this project actually is. This is a once in a 5-8 year project.

    We realize this is a non-trivial inconvenience, however the benefits to the entire Canadian Internet community will be immediate. This will be a much more secure, robust, and scaleable system. From the Registrar perspective the benefits will also be quickly apparent. Currently our scheduled regular maintenance outages are typically several hours. With the new system, it will take a fraction of the time. This “investment” in time will payback within a handful of regular maintenance windows.

    We realize it is an inconvenience. For that I apologize. However, the entire .ca community will all be far better off once this major investment has been completed early next week.


    • Michele Neylon June 6, 2012 at 1:32 pm #


      Thanks for taking the time to reply.
      One thing, however, that you have no addressed is the choice of day.
      Why is this being done on a weekday when it is more likely to cause disruptions?

      • Byron June 6, 2012 at 5:33 pm #

        CIRA has carefully mapped out the effort required to make this transition to the new middleware-based registry platform, and developed a schedule that provides a reasonable balance between expediency with quality control. While we are very committed to minimizing the impact on our customers, we need to balance this with the availability of our resources to ensure a successful migration. This doesn’t only mean internal CIRA staff resources, but also availability of Registrars (for testing) and other support services, both internal and external, that we may require throughout the migration. It was on this basis that it was necessary to choose a weekday for migration.

        As I mentioned in my previous comment, this outage truly is an important investment that will ultimately generate a long-term gain…in providing a safer, more secure registry, and a registry that can be enhanced more efficiently in the future. Bottom-line, less downtime for future upgrades.

        An additional point of note. CIRA has communicated about the middleware implementation on 15 separate occasions since the initial outreach on Dec 2nd. We received our first feedback last week.

  2. dotcanuck rar June 11, 2012 at 11:03 pm #

    ask him when they first communicated how long the outage was going to be. then ask him why they are still being obtuse about the nature of the outage in the emails they sent to r’ants today. it all stinks.

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