Research in Motion co-CEO Jim Balsillie said the sort of problem that led to the BlackBerry shutdown last month “will never happen again.” Balsillie offered up the promise in a rare interview that will appear in eWeek this week.
Balsillie called the event that shut down e-mail for BlackBerries in the United States last month “a process thing.”
The RIM VIP explained the outage was the result of an unlikely string of events – the failure of a minor software upgrade to a caching subsystem was followed by the failure of the failover system resulting in a subsequent overloading of a second system. “It was a process error that we had that's been fixed. It shouldn't have happened, and it won't happen again,” Balsillie said. “It wasn't a corruption of any form of the infrastructure, and that's very important.”
Balsillie said the company is "fault tolerating" the system. “We're clearly putting a lot more fault tolerance into the system, a lot more capacity.” Added Balsillie. “We're having domain failover architectures; we're having business continuity solutions experts, so from that component piece of the infrastructure, that's not going to happen again.”
Balsillie refreshingly admitted that he was taking the issue very seriously and that the outage affected a lot more than people’s e-mail for a couple of hours. The U.S. government is RIM's biggest customer, and with BlackBerry devices used across by everyone from intelligence agencies to the military to law enforcement it is critical the system can be relied on.