The data centers of the leading cloud service from Microsoft in the UK for some time until recently did not accept new customers, as all available resources were involved in the needs of the Ukrainian government, which increased dramatically after the start of the full-scale invasion.
The American tech giant has agreed to host the IT systems of the entire government of Ukraine on its remote servers. This caused a sharp jump in their load, and it is not possible to increase capacity quickly because the global shortage of microchips has not yet gone anywhere.
Microsoft’s flagship cloud service Azure has two UK data center regions: UK South and UK West. Neither has recently taken on new customers for its most popular services: Cosmos DB database and virtual machine hosting.
A Microsoft spokesperson says that the first priority was to ensure stable operation for existing customers.
Azure provides a wide range of Internet services, from hosting websites and databases to hosting the complex IT infrastructure of large companies. The service is part of Microsoft’s cloud business, which is valued at $23 billion.
The problem was noticed when a small UK IT company left several requests to access resources in Azure, all of which were rejected.
QuoStar, a Bournemouth-based IT support outsourcing company, tried to sign up for several Azure products, but was told “we are unable to confirm your request at this time due to high demand in this region (UK South)”. Microsoft offered to approach them with this request in two months.
Neil Clark, director of cloud services at QuoStar, says the big promises of unlimited cloud access from Microsoft and its rivals – Amazon, Google, and Alibaba – are already falling short of reality. For now, you should work with them with the same expectations you would have with smaller providers.
A Microsoft spokesman acknowledged the shortage, adding that demand for cloud computing has grown at an unprecedented rate over the past two years. According to them, this jump, together with the influence of general trends in the industry, forced the company to take a number of certain measures.
Microsoft significantly supports Ukraine by placing Ukrainian government infrastructure in its European data centers to protect it from missile attacks.
Microsoft President Brad Smith spoke about this earlier: “Russia not surprisingly targeted Ukraine’s governmental data center in an early cruise missile attack, and other on premises servers similarly were vulnerable to attacks by conventional weapons.”
Mezha managed to create a new virtual machine in the UK South region, but there are no guarantees that the problem has been finally solved.