House E-Mail Back Up

Posted October 10, 2008 at 10:42am

Updated: 1:47 p.m.

After an all-night outage, most House e-mail and Blackberry services have been restored, according to House administrators.

The outage, which started Thursday night and has been fixed bit by bit Friday, also affected some House.gov Web sites.

House computer engineers worked around the clock to solve the problem caused by an overloaded circuit breaker in one of the House’s data centers, according to a letter sent to lawmakers from House Chief Administrative Officer Daniel Beard.

Some accounts were slowed temporarily by the huge backlog of e-mail.

Offices never lost Internet access, and some used personal e-mail accounts to get around the problem.

Beard said the problem had nothing to do with earlier slowdowns related to massive public interest in the $700 billion financial rescue package.

Beard said that he will recommend purchases of more energy-efficient server equipment for House data centers.

Engineers are already “fortifying the system” with electrical upgrades and working on an improved backup system. But power supplies have been strained “as more and more servers are installed to handle the House’s ever-increasing need for more bandwidth.”

“By reducing the amount of energy the House’s computing currently demands, and by creating electrical backup systems, I am confident we will greatly diminish outages like this from happening again,” Beard said.