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PSN: Sony issues “emergency maintenance” warning to developers

Tuesday, 26th April 2011 10:10 GMT By Patrick Garratt

As it appears the PSN downtime saga will last longer than a week, Sony has issued a warning to developers that it is facing an “emergency” situation.

The following is given to PlayStation developers when they sign into Sony’s developer relations site:

“PSN emergency maintenance.

“Please note that PlayStation Network is currently down for an emergency maintenance. Please hold while the issues are resolved.

“You will be unable to sign in until the maintenance is resolved.

“Apologies for the trouble.”

PSN was taken offline last Wednesday due to an “external intrusion”.

Sony has provided few updates on the matter, saying only that is rebuilding systems and warned at the weekend that its efforts in restoring the service will be “time intensive“.

It emerged last night that the outage may be the result of a firmware hack that allowed some to pirate PSN content using fake credit card numbers, although this is currently unconfirmed.

We’re hoping to get a fuller update from Sony on this today, so stay tuned.

Breaking news

67 Comments

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  1. Blerk

    The most bizarre thing about this whole situation appears to be the length of time it’s taken them to actually say anything about it.

    Six days in and they’re just thinking about making an official statement to their development partners? Like they wouldn’t have noticed yet?

    #1 3 years ago
  2. EscoBlades

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_nQTPEOYx7BQ/TOExL766jyI/AAAAAAAAAnk/txTkn7s9kZQ/s1600/oops+sign+bubble.jpg

    #2 3 years ago
  3. OrbitMonkey

    @1 I guess they just don’t train their customer relation folk in how to say sorry, ya know? Not that they need to, they got a legion *cough* of volunteer fanboy apologists for that ;)

    #3 3 years ago
  4. viralshag

    So what happens if the issues are never resolved? No PSN ever again… O-M-G!

    O.o

    Nah kidding, I’m not that bothered as I have a 360 too. This would really suck if I only had a PS3 and played a lot of MP.

    Pretty shocking online gaming disaster…

    #4 3 years ago
  5. Benjo1981

    I’m guessing Sony are going to have to offer some kind of free PSN game to customers for this downtime.

    I’ve seen plenty of anti-compensation arguments but surely PSN is included in the price of a PS3 (as PSN is free) so with PSN being down for so long, there is a feature of the PS3 not available.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. OrbitMonkey

    Wonder if VG247 will shut down for a wk, to develop a new site impervious to spam bots?

    #6 3 years ago
  7. DrDamn

    @6
    Heh, things really don’t happen that quickly with VG247 updates – possibly the only people slower than Sony.

    @5
    Agree – it “free” but it does get paid for somehow doesn’t it? It would be nice to see some sort of gesture from Sony for the inconvenience.

    General point on information. I would assume the bigger partners were kept informed privately of what is going on. If it is what is speculated then all the consumers need to know is a) it’s down and for a valid reason and b) when it will be back up. They don’t know b) and that’s what they’ve said. Yes it’s very bad for them but what is with all the entitlement to know everything here? Perhaps there are good reasons for all this info not being out in the open.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. Gekidami

    “As it appears the PSN downtime saga will last longer than a week”
    Whats this statement based off exactly? If it actually says that on the developer relations site you’ve forgot to quote it…

    #8 3 years ago
  9. Benjo1981

    @8

    I’d assume it is based upon two facts: PSN has been down for six days and Sony have openly admitted to having no clue as to when it will be back online.

    If you put those two together it’s a fair speculation that PSN will be down for another day (at least) which therefore amounts to one week (and counting..).

    #9 3 years ago
  10. viralshag

    I can’t understand this call for compensation by people for something that is provided to them for free…

    You don’t pay extra for PSN, you don’t pay more for games to play online through PSN and for the most part you receive a great service for something that is charged for by a competitor.

    If they do choose to give something out for the trouble, that’s great and good on them but I don’t think Sony should feel obligated to do that.

    This is simply an inconvenience to you; what have you really lost out on? Other than some time playing online.

    #10 3 years ago
  11. Benjo1981

    @Viralshag

    It’s not free though, really. It comes as an advertised feature of the PS3. The very fact that it’s free makes it a feature of the PS3, whereas XBL Gold is not strictly a feature of the console when you buy it because you have to pay extra for it.

    So in answer to your question: we’ve lost out on an advertised feature of the expensive console we’ve bought at a time of year when many of us were looking forward to spending some time on it.

    #11 3 years ago
  12. LOLshock94

    lol FAIL

    #12 3 years ago
  13. NightCrawler1970

    Someone pulled online under my account with a fake-credit card an EA game of 39.99 wich one it was was uncleared, but 1 thing, my wife was pissed…

    Next time when Sony comes online i will cleared credit card number and for now on, pre-pay PSN card…

    #13 3 years ago
  14. viralshag

    @ Benjo1981,

    And like I said, that is an inconvenience. The feature has not been removed, it is simply unavailable at this moment in time. And to me there is a huge difference between unavailability and removal of a feature.

    Yeah, it is bad luck as to the timing of it being down but I still do not see that as grounds for any sort of compensation.

    #14 3 years ago
  15. OrbitMonkey

    @14 Your right they don’t have to, BUT it would be good customer service if they did. A nice dynamic theme of GeoHotz being bummed by Kevin Butler should be enough ;)

    #15 3 years ago
  16. DrDamn

    @13
    Eh? They used your account to buy an EA game for £39.99/$39.99 but used a fake credit card and not yours?

    #16 3 years ago
  17. Benjo1981

    @Viralshag

    So…they compensate for the inconvenience? Either way, Sony have some PR to do.

    You seriously don’t think that PSN being down for the duration of a public holiday is not grounds for compensation? People BUY these consoles to play AT THEIR CONVENIENCE. Whichever way you look at it, Sony have pissed off a lot of people and need to do some kind of compensating to try to calm the storm.

    #17 3 years ago
  18. Christopher Jack

    @16, I think he had wallet funds. Either that or he’s crazy :P

    #18 3 years ago
  19. ManuOtaku

    #13 i think for now on all the users of xbox live, PSN & PSN+, or wii online should be use the pre pay cards/points in order to avoid this situations, therefore we can take a few advantages out of this sad situation, i did never put my accounts on any of those services since i was afraid something like this could happen, but i understand is easier thay way but not the best choice.

    #14 sony should compesate the PSN+ users, because each day you have a VIP privilege like discounts, free demos, free wallpapers etc,and this VIP last an specific amount of time (1 year), therefore each day worhts some money at the end, because you dont have access to those said privileges during the shutdwon, in reality you lost something, therefore the best thing they can do is extent the expire time for the days this shutdown last, or give another discounts or privilege.
    Therefore if sony should compesate the PSN+, they should compesate the PSN as well just for the equal treatment to everyone, but that can be debated

    #19 3 years ago
  20. DrDamn

    @18
    But they said using a “fake-credit card”. I guess that puts them in the crazy camp :).

    #20 3 years ago
  21. Christopher Jack

    Well his English is poor so I can’t really tell what he actually means.

    #21 3 years ago
  22. viralshag

    @ Benjo1981

    You’re right. I seriously don’t think PSN being down over a bank holiday is grounds for compensation. And that is mainly because the console is still playable. Games are still playable. If you are that desperate to play online with people, just call some friends over, it’s not like they can get on PSN either.

    I don’t understand why you are trying to argue with what is my opinion. At the end of the day, if I’m wrong, you and I will get something for free… I have PSN… It was down… I wasn’t trying to play it at the time but hell if there is something for free then I’m in… And I didn’t even think I deserved it.

    #22 3 years ago
  23. pane149

    What about people who own dc universe online who pay to play n can’t because psn is down

    #23 3 years ago
  24. Benjo1981

    @viralshag

    That’s fair enough. I guess we’ll see what they decide to do..whenever they manage to get it working again ;)

    #24 3 years ago
  25. viralshag

    @ pane149

    I would say this downtime is doing you a favour…

    I kid, that’s probably the best argument I have seen for any kind of compensation because it solely runs online. It is a Sony game though, so it shouldn’t be hard to offer some free game time or free content.

    #25 3 years ago
  26. viralshag

    @ Benjo1981

    IF they get it working :P

    #26 3 years ago
  27. Benjo1981

    @26

    Lol, it’s looking like a mighty big IF at the moment!

    You reckon Sony’ll compensate developers for lost revenue?

    #27 3 years ago
  28. viralshag

    @ Benjo1981

    I don’t know. I think there would have to be a strong case for it. Obviously it is not as easy as just waving a wand and offering compensation.

    Factors to consider are average downloads of content per day, content released at the time of the outage, games released at that time… Things like that. I imagine it will come down to the fact of whether or not they think it is worth it or even necessary to offer any sort of reimbursement. I also don’t think Sony would bother looking at that unless a dev brought up their case for it. I think you will see more support for indie devs over anyone else.

    I have certainly made choices on the fact that PSN is down, I decided to get Mortal Kombat for the 360 over the PS3. I doubt I’m the only person in the world that made such decisions but at the end of the day the only people that lost out in that are Sony.

    #28 3 years ago
  29. Benjo1981

    @28

    That’s the most frustrating thing about all this: Sony just don’t help themselves. From the arrgoant comments about getting a second job, to the high price point of the PS3, to this. Whilst not all avoidable, many of these events could have been mitigated to reduce their impact.

    #29 3 years ago
  30. nikk900

    Funny how people say it’s a bad time to go down, but when would it be a good time exactly?

    #30 3 years ago
  31. Benjo1981

    @30

    It doesn’t follow from the fact that there isn’t a good time for PSN to go down that this is not a particularly bad time for it to go downn.

    Bank holiday + release of two big games (one of which has heavily marketed online features) = a bad time.

    #31 3 years ago
  32. viralshag

    @ Benjo1981

    I constantly think that Sony never help themselves. I think the PS3 is by far the best console they have ever released and some of the best exclusives too. But Sony as a company in the game space at least, I feel like they have been way below par on this gen with marketing, PR and just generally how they carry themselves.

    It will be shocking if things are not back up and running by this weekends bank holiday.

    #32 3 years ago
  33. Benjo1981

    @32

    It’s a shame because I thought the release of the Slim marked them turning a corner after all their problems.

    They’ve got a few days, hopefully they’ll get it back up and running. Another bank holiday weekend offline would be a disaster for them. It’d cause MS to have another free XBL weekend!

    #33 3 years ago
  34. revolting

    What a lot of people don’t seem to realize is that the current issues Sony are facing go way beyond just the PSN being down (which in and of itself would be bad enough); Massively are reporting that pretty much all Sony online networks are being impacted, including PC MMOs such as Everquest, DCUO and Vanguard. ( http://massively.joystiq.com/2011/04/23/soe-acknowledges-external-intrusion-responsible-for-website-do/
    )

    Although the PSN outage is understandably in the spotlight, the problem is way bigger than just that itself. The financial implications alone are a huge nightmare to fathom out, with various SOE subscription based services either being interfered with or outright inaccessible, and on top of that you’ve got reputational damage with both customers and developers alike, much of which is secondhand fallout… MMO gamers in particular are a fickle lot (and justifiably so) when their paid services are intruded upon.

    Sony (and epsecially SOE) have never been good at communicating directly with customers, so it’s little surprise that what little information has been given is less than helpful, but it’s difficult to see this Easter break as anything but disastrous. It really does go lightyears beyond “Multiplayer is broken so play singleplayer instead.” The problem is neither excluded to nor even focused on the PS3 or PSN. It’s the entire Sony behemoth.

    #34 3 years ago
  35. spiderLAW

    man i havent posted for a while. But it seems a lot of those that have been adding into these comments actually have some well though out ideas about the subject. Revolting: +100 buddy.

    #35 3 years ago
  36. Benjo1981

    @34

    I didn’t realise it was that bad. Sony have quite the problem on their hands.

    #36 3 years ago
  37. ManuOtaku

    #34 Well i agree the implications are staggering in this case even their stock on the market is getting a hit because of this, trully devasteting if i might say so

    #37 3 years ago
  38. NightCrawler1970

    #16 yup, normally when i purchase something, i will get a notification by email from sony about, “thank you for purchased “the game”… ect ect ect..
    and this unknown EA game of $39.99 on a Saturday 4-23-11(i wasn’t home, i had a easter-party), being withdraw from my account with a fake CC…

    #19 Im not a PS3 plus member(why should i be), gaming online with Sony was free anyway, why pay more to be a “+” member for discounts and free avatar which sony think they can giveaway.

    I have nothing against Xbox, Xbox have better GPX, but can’t handle the 7:1 speaker sets… why pay $50 to be a “gold” member to play online, you already pay “cable”???

    Yes next time will be prepay cards, and i think sony will think harder to make “user-friendly” specialty when you’re a “+” member, if your plus membership almost expired, sony gonna charge you by credit card to renew the membership, why not like the Xbox live, you expired “live” than you can’t get in online or play games with ya mates… goto the store and buy a 1 or 3 month live card to GAME ON!!!

    But noooo sony need ya credit information, and now the server is hacked…, If Sony refund my $39,99(i doubt it, because whatever you purchased is alway FINAL SALE, NO REFUND, but if Sony refund me, thanks a bunch, if not, i guess im SOL…

    #38 3 years ago
  39. NightCrawler1970

    #18, my wallet fund was $00.00, but Sony said, if you wan’t something on PSN, even ya wallet fund is $00.00 they(sony) STILL can withdraw whatever you want by credit card… go check Sony payment statement…

    #39 3 years ago
  40. Gladiator007

    This is an easy fix… Switch to the real, true online experience, XBOX Live. You get what you pay for… Remember how people use to brag about PSN being free? A lot of good the free service did securing its network and your data…

    #40 3 years ago
  41. Phoenixblight

    @40

    GO somewhere else Xbox is just as easily hacked look it up. Sony just decided to rebuild their system after the intrusion.

    #41 3 years ago
  42. Gladiator007

    @41 Facts are facts dude… Xbox live has never been intruded like this. We’re talking 70 million subscribers info, name, address, email, etc. and they are not ruling out creditcard numbers. You get what you pay for… Don’t shoot the messenger…

    #42 3 years ago
  43. Phoenixblight

    @42

    Oh really? I worked for Xbox Live and you would be surprised on how many accounts were called because their information was taken through the system. The difference is MS keeps the system running and doesn’t go public about it, this I do know I have worked for them for 3 years and I know how they work.

    #43 3 years ago
  44. DaMan

    not really, it wasn’t taken through the system. the comparison is asinine tbh. they just ‘figured out’ the passwords.

    #44 3 years ago
  45. Gekidami

    @43
    Indeed, i think people dont realize how often Live accounts get hacked. Lets not forget that they’re the same as windows live id accounts, on PC. I’ve already had one of mine hacked, luckily it wasnt connected to my Live account, but if it was then that would have been that…

    #45 3 years ago
  46. DaMan

    keep deepthroating, Gekidami. Kevin Butler needs you now more than ever.

    seriously, please do elaborate. getting the correct password for Live account or getting it through the system. how’s that comparable? if you use ‘qwertyqwerty’ as yours on vg247, and I get into your account, does that mean vg247 is as bad as PSN?

    #46 3 years ago
  47. Gladiator007

    @43

    I’m sure there has been intrusion on the Xbox live network, what network hasn’t, that’s not my point. My point is that there hasn’t been anything on the scale of what you see happening with the PSN issue, with Xbox Live. That’s a fact, plain and simple. #34 Brings up an excellent point, the implications of this are huge, and the effects will be felt for some time to come. Check the stock market.. Sony stock’s have taken a hit from this. This impacts way more than just multiplayer gamers. Developers are losing money behind this everyday this issue stays here.

    You said “worked for Xbox Live” Why did you leave?

    #47 3 years ago
  48. Ireland Michael

    @45 Live accounts get “hacked” when people are stupid enough to give out their passwords on a fake site or over Xbox Live. That’s not even hacking in the literal sense. It’s just scheming.

    This is the literal access to and removal of information directly from Sony’s own servers. That’s not even comparable.

    #48 3 years ago
  49. Phoenixblight

    @46

    This is not just people getting from phishing and guessing passwords. There was a internal memo telling the emplyees about the possible intrusion of their system and that there may be an influx of people calling about their accounts being hacked and taking unauthorized charges. You can believe whatever you want but I have worked there so I know what I am talking about. Just because it doesn’t happen to you doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.

    “You said “worked for Xbox Live” Why did you leave?”

    Pay was pretty horrible, no real control on your schedule unless you had family or were going to school which I wasn’t at the time, plus they limit your internet access to where you can only go to MS related sites. A manufacturer offered me 50% more pay with double the hours along with weekly pay and health benefits, thats why I left all the other things were just nails to the coffin.

    #49 3 years ago
  50. DaMan

    okay. even if that would be true, shit happens. everything gets hacked occasionally. fact is the scale is different. if there was ever a possibility of easy intrusion such as this, and MS just ignored it, the account hacks would be noticeable. how come so few were compromised, if any?

    or maybe MS just fixed it quickly? we could theoretize forever.

    if you worked there, how ‘d it end? did they fix it? how come you don’t know?

    #50 3 years ago
  51. Phoenixblight

    @50

    “and MS just ignored it, the account hacks would be noticeable. how come so few were compromised, if any?”

    I can’t tell the numbers as a whole because I wasn’t in that type of position see the what the calls were for but I would say that I had double the calls of the usual for 2 days for the situation. Typically I would get calls and answer emails related to hooking up their 360 to the net but I would say it was 4-10 calls for a every hour for the hacking. BTW this was just for the states.

    For the resolution I am not sure but after the two days it cut down considerably I assume they caught or found the intrusion pretty quick its MS after all.

    As far as this SOny thing goes I think its just fail all around I personally think they are using napalm to remove an anthill.

    #51 3 years ago
  52. DaMan

    well, in what year did that happen? personally, I can’t recall any spike in account hacks covered by any half decent website, which it surely would ‘ve been.

    #52 3 years ago
  53. Phoenixblight

    It was in the summer of 2007 not sure what month. Well MS didn’t go public with it what we did is put the charges that were claimed to be not authorized by the user on hold then a higher tier of workers would investigate them to see if they were hacked by checking their IP address I assume.

    There are a lot of things that don’t get reported by the news every day or gaming sites every day. For example there was a robbery at this Mom and Pop Computer shop right by the university and it never hit the news ever. One of the cashiers was shot at which I would think that would be news worthy.

    #53 3 years ago
  54. DaMan

    I know, no argument, journos do report selectively. that’s the point though, I’m saying if there was a spike in account hacks, the user complaints would be noticeable, since it is ‘newsworthy’.. all I could find with a google search was the one about tricking support personnel http://www.windows-now.com/blogs/robert/more-on-the-xbox-live-account-hack-scandal.aspx

    which is a whole different thing.

    #54 3 years ago
  55. Phoenixblight

    I am not sure why anyone didn’t report it to a newsmedia or why anyone didn’t do a blog about it. I was just a guy that read a memo and took the calls and emails. We weren’t supposed to tell the users “btw our system has been hacked” we just took it at face value no telling the consumer anything just read a script held the charge and then escalated the issue. Thats all I did just like when people call in RROD except we didn’t ask if your machine was registered and under warranty.

    #55 3 years ago
  56. DaMan

    well, okay. although, what I was saying is not that MS would do, but that if many users were affected, they would complain, and journos would make a story out of that..

    #56 3 years ago
  57. Phoenixblight

    @56

    Maybe but 4 years ago is quite a different beast than it is today. These corps can’t fart without someone saying something.

    #57 3 years ago
  58. InfamousValdon

    It’s not just corps that can’t fart without anybody saying anything I’m pretty sure we all fall into that catagorie.

    #58 3 years ago
  59. InfamousValdon

    Do you work for Sony Phoenixblight?

    #59 3 years ago
  60. Gladiator007

    This is getting the attention it is because it’s a big deal… You have to stop and think too that MS has always had more resources (money) to invest in the Xbox Live online infrastructure because they’ve always charged and re-invested in Xbox live. Sony has always been a few steps behind with their online service and I think one of those steps was being behind in how secure their network was. To#50′s point, things are always getting hacked. The question is to what level and how is it dealt with. I’m sure they will get it resolved eventually, but as of now it’s a big deal. If credit card data has been stolen, a lot more could be at stake for PSN gamers. Sony has issued a statement to its online community urging subscribers to be on alert for identity theft attempts as well as email, telephone and postal scams. (Users can contact the three major U.S. credit bureaus — Experian, Equifax and TransUnion — and have their accounts put in “high alert” status for no charge.)
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/42769019

    #60 3 years ago
  61. InfamousValdon

    What about if your Canadian do we have the free credit bureau check, I know it cost money for credit checks are Sony going to cover our expenses?

    #61 3 years ago
  62. Kerplunk

    @59 Why don’t you try reading comment 43?

    @61 You do understand the difference between your credit card and your credit rating, right?

    Don’t sit around whining on the internet and preparing more and more outrage when you can take some action at no charge and take steps to check your own finances yourself.

    #62 3 years ago
  63. InfamousValdon

    First of all your credit cards and payment effect your credit rating, so I think you need to relax, secondly Phoenixblight said he worked for MS 3 years ago that doesn’t answer if he works for Sony now, maybe you should think before you type, and your the only one whinning here buddy I just asked a simple question, nothing more nothing less.

    #63 3 years ago
  64. Phoenixblight

    No I don’t work for or ever worked for Sony. I am just victim in all of this like the rest of the PS3 users. Just playing Portal 2 SP and CO Op splitscreen when ever I can until I can play with my friends through the PSN.

    #64 3 years ago
  65. InfamousValdon

    alright, sorry if I put you on the spot

    #65 3 years ago
  66. Kerplunk

    Wow. Do you think you could be a little more ultra-defensive next time InfamousValdon? I don’t think you’re trying hard enough.

    Also, having worked in the credit industry for a few years, I can tell you that your credit rating isn’t going to be affected in the space of a few days or even weeks. Take action and look at your own finances yourself instead of doing nothing.

    #66 3 years ago
  67. InfamousValdon

    Will do

    #67 3 years ago