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Google Web Site Outage !!! (A rare incident)
Contributed by: G3nu1n3, at 5/09/2005 01:13:00 PM.

Google's Web site was inaccessible for a short time Saturday (3:45 to 4 p.m. PST) and some visitors reported being rerouted to another searcch engine (SoGoSearch.com.), leading some to believe that the search giant had been hacked.

Google's blaming a DNS problem for its sudden disappearance of the web.

One of the issues thrown up by the sudden collapse, however, was the problem of auto-URL checkers built into many browsers.

The problem emerges when a popular .com disappears. Many browsers try other variants of an address until they find one that exists - in this case, google.com.com google.com.org and google.com.net. The first problem is that they do this at all, without asking permission; the second is that they simply append an extra TLD to the end of the existing address, as opposed to replacing the existing one (surely google.net would be a more likely replacement?). The third, much more serious issue is that - in Safari's case - there's no mention that users are now visiting a site other than the one they requested. The address bar continues to say http://www.google.com. But visitors are faced with a page called "SoGo Search" - the .com.net variant.

This added confusion to the despair, with many believing (and understandably so) that Google had fallen victim to a DNS attack. After all, if google.com is now pointing to something called SoGo search, without description, and with undoctored screenshots showing exactly that behaviour, it's the logical conclusion.

Next time if and when Google hits another DNS outage here are the IP address based URL of Google :)


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