Microsoft Is Making Progress on Search: You Noticed Bing's Glitch

| About: Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)

It’s a happy day for Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) search team. Bing had a half hour outage late Thursday and a few folks actually noticed.

Bing went down for a half hour between 6:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. PST over a configuration glitch. The East Coast probably didn’t notice Bing’s hiatus. And frankly I’m not sure much of the West Coast noticed either. But the techies noticed.

That’s a nice little step in the search mindshare category. Bing only has 10 percent market share in search, but it’s progress when a few folks notice when the service goes dark.

Microsoft should be happy that some folks noticed Bing tripped. Back in the day, Live Search could have disappeared for a week before anyone noticed.

According to a blog post:

The cause of the outage was a configuration change during some internal testing that had unfortunate and unintended consequences.

As soon as the issue was detected, the change was rolled back, which caused the site to return to normal behavior. Unfortunately the detection and rollback took about half an hour, and during that time users were unable to use bing.com.

The upshot: the Bing team needs a little project management post mortem on what went wrong. It’s doubtful there’s much of an image hit for Bing. But more importantly, Bing tripped and people noticed. In Redmond, that’s real progress on search.