I'm trying to work out if previous datacenter failures on AWS have just applied to a single "availability zone" or the whole region. Does anyone know the details of the extent of the worst AWS failure?
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Amazon AWS has suffered at least two major outages in its life.
The first, in April of 2011, affected one of the availability zones in US-East.
The second, in June of 2012, affected one of the availability zones in US-East. During this event, for a short period of time it was not possible to start new instances in any US-East availability zone.
Both failures were pretty bad, though they seem to have resolved them pretty well overall.