OVH Strasbourg sbg2 data center fire cause, status OVHcloud servers up this week

Following the Strasbourg blast, OVHcloud expects to restart servers this week.
OVH also publishes a list of who may be eligible for data retrieval.

After a fire engulfed the SBG2 facility on Wednesday, March 10, OVHcloud has announced plans to restore services in its remaining Strasbourg data centers.

SBG3 should have power by Wednesday, March 17, according to OVHcloud, Europe's largest cloud provider; the other two data centers, SBG1 and SBG4, will not have power until Friday. According to a tweet from OVHcloud creator Octave Klaba, while servers in SBG1 and SBG4 will be restarted in two days, servers in SBG3 could take six to eight days to restart. Along with SBG2, four rooms of SBG1 were lost.

Meanwhile, the service provider has contacted all customers and posted a status page detailing the status of all systems, including whether or not data can be recovered in the long run. Several online services, including the Rust videogame, experienced data loss as a result of the burn.

On March 10th, 2021, the OVH SBG2 data center in Strasbourg was destroyed by fire.
On March 10th, 2021, the OVH SBG2 data center in Strasbourg was destroyed by fire.

Cleaning SBG3 of soot

"By the end of next week, on Friday, we will begin repowering SBG1/SBG4. It will take two days to get all of the servers online "In a tweet thread, Klaba said. "By the middle of next week, Wednesday, we will begin repowering SBG3, and it will take 6-8 days to get all servers back online."

OVHcloud had planned to restore power to SBG1 and SBG4 by Monday, but more than 60 engineers on site have taken a cautious approach to power restoration and infrastructure restarting.

Before being connected to the grid, each component of the infrastructure is checked with power from the on-site generators. According to a table in an OVHcloud announcement from March 14, the data centers have been temporarily connected to electricity and the network grid. SBG3 will get a new network room tomorrow, and the internal networks of all three data centers will be redeployed on March 17.

According to the update, the physical effects of the fire are still being handled, with the SBG3 building expected to be dry by now, and soot in the SBG3 server rooms to be cleaned starting tomorrow (Tuesday, March 16).

Is it possible to recover data?

Replacement servers are available in OVHcloud's Roubaix (RBX) and Gravelines (GRA) data centers in France for bare metal, hosted private cloud, and public cloud customers. "In the coming weeks, we are committed to delivering about 15,000 new servers," says the company, which has increased production of custom server racks in its Roubaix factory.

Customers who used bare metal services in SBG2 would most likely lose their data, although some data could be recoverable from backups, according to the company, though the specifics for each service are stated in a comprehensive document. Some hosted private cloud services, for example, are classified as providing internal backups in the same room as SBG2, which are marked as "non-recoverable."

No OVH, firefighting, or local government services staff members were injured, the company said. Restart of surviving data centers on campus not anticipated until Monday.
No OVH, firefighting, or local government services staff members were injured, the company said. Restart of surviving data centers on campus not anticipated until Monday.

Klaba promised that OVHcloud would provide complete details, sending an email to "every customer with his unique situation and choices" last week.

OVHcloud suggests starting services in Roubaix or Gravelines for all customers: "Free months will be applied as soon as possible."

The cause of the fire is still being investigated, but Klaba indicated last week that one of the uninterruptible power supplies at SBG2 was a prime suspect, stating that UPS 7 had received maintenance from the manufacturer the day before the fire, and UPS 7 and UPS 8 were ablaze when firefighters arrived.