Comcast’s cable Internet service on the East Coast was hit with problems late Sunday that left many users unable to access the Internet. Complaints began to surface on Twitter late yesterday evening and appeared to be relegated to subscribers in Boston, Washington, DC, and the surrounding areas. “Our engineers are working very aggressively to fix the problem,” said Doreen Vigue, a Boston-based spokeswoman for Comcast. She said she didn’t have any specific information about the cause of the fault or the cities affected beyond Boston. The issue seemed to revolve around Comcast’s DNS servers, which are what handle the conversion between IP addresses and their actual internet domain names. Several Comcast customers said on Twitter that they were able to restore their internet access by switching out the entries on their computers for Comcast’s DNS servers with those of the DNS servers provided by Google or OpenDNS.
Comcast spokesman Charlie Douglas told CNET through e-mail that last night Comcast engineers identified a server issue that affected Internet service for customers primarily in the Boston and D.C./Beltway areas. Though the outage focused on Boston and Washington, D.C., a Comcast customer service technician reportedly told NBC News that there were “significant Internet outages” in Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia, Massachusetts, New York, and New Hampshire.
Comcast announced that it had fixed the problem shortly after midnight and just in time for the official start of Cyber Monday, the Internet’s version of Black Friday. It’s not clear how many customers were affected by the outage or what the exact cause was, but neither cable television nor phone service appear to have been impacted. Though Comcast is reporting that the problem has been resolved, some Twitter users are saying their Internet connections remain down. Douglas advises that customers still without access should reboot or power down and power up their cable modems, echoing the instructions from Comcast support reps.
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