Microsoft Teams Goes Down Amid Increased Usage

Posted on March 16, 2020 by Mehedi Hassan in Microsoft 365 with 18 Comments

Microsoft’s team communication tool, Microsoft Teams, is experiencing a severe outage this morning here in Europe. Microsoft confirmed the problems on Twitter and says it’s actively investigating the problem.

It seems like most of the affected users are in Europe. The outage is most likely caused by the increased usage of the service, fueled by more people working from home and following their government guidance.

Microsoft Teams being down right now is obviously not a good situation for anyone involved. Microsoft recently started giving away 6-months of paid features in Teams for free to help people work better remotely during the coronavirus outbreak. The increased usage has probably led to Microsoft scrambling to support all these new users and demand.

Microsoft has probably already started scaling up its servers to support the increased usage, so maybe these issues are unrelated. Xbox Live went down over the weekend, too.

However, people need services like Teams to just work at this time more than ever before. More companies and people are working remotely now, and Teams not working properly is not a good look for Microsoft’s flagship team communication tool.

Update: Microsoft has thankfully addressed the problem:

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Comments (19)

19 responses to “Microsoft Teams Goes Down Amid Increased Usage”

  1. MarkPow

    Not that I really want this but they need to introduce a local Teams server that can be made highly available in a failover situation (and set in hybrid mode).

    It is not acceptable for any business to be at the mercy of their cloud provider.

  2. plm

    Is there any evidence that usage has increased because of COVID-19? Or has usage moved from office to home?

    At this point I'd suggest there is little evidence that this is a scale problem related to increase usage. If I had to make an uninformed guess, I'd say the outage is caused by some other issue. More along the lines of the Xbox outage.

    I urge you to adopt a standard that your reporting be based on facts not speculation. Especially at times like this, your readers need to have actionable news. Speculation can actually do more harm at times than good.

    • sandy

      In reply to plm:

      Aren't you just speculating by suggesting it is not related to COVID-19?

      France is now in full lockdown, as Spain & Italy already were, and the outage starting in the morning (CET) it's reasonable to suspect that the increased load due to people using the service more.

      Plus Xbox Live going down may also have been due to increased usage, with more people stuck at home due to the pandemic.

  3. jules_wombat

    This is pretty embarrassing when we are told the future is all cloud and Azure services. Just when we all need it, Microsoft lets us down. At least Skype is holding up.

  4. arnstarr

    Start time: Monday, March 16, 2020, 3:30 AM (3/15/2020, 8:30 PM UTC)

    End time: Monday, March 16, 2020, 4:51 AM (3/15/2020, 9:51 PM UTC)

    Root cause: An upstream power outage resulted in impact for multiple Microsoft 365 services.

    Next steps:

    - We're working to identify the cause of the power outage to find ways to prevent this problem from happening again.

  5. crp0908

    In reply to RM:

    If cloud wasn't Microsoft's main focus and a significant source of Microsoft's income, I would tend to agree with you. However, Microsoft likes to give the impression that their resources are infinite. Their mantra is 'cloud first' so their priorities should be 'cloud first.' 

    In their gesture of temporarily giving Teams away for free, they managed to underestimate demand or overestimate capacity and they adversely impacted their paying customers. Someone made a miscalculation that resulted in a bad decision. So yes, Microsoft should be embarrassed.

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