TouchPad sale causes repeated DDoS of online retailers

In the last 36 hours, consumers across the UK have been finding out which online tech stores have put the development effort into their online stores as bargain hunters sniffing out cheap HP TouchPads repeatedly bring down big websites.

Following HP crushing the price of the TouchPad to $99 in the US late Friday night, speculation was rife that a similar price crunch would hit the UK on Monday. When the Twittering masses got wind of an impending price reduction from Dixons, PC World and Currys - all part of the DSG group - the respective websites were subjected to distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) like behaviour as users clamoured for bargain deals, making the sites entirely or partially unavailable for some time.

Later in the evening Carphone Warehouse announced it would be offering discounted units, their website was unavailable due to DNS issues, then they went into a holding configuration, pushing users searching to mobile offers to sister companies. They also reported over 300 users in their phone queue at one point, attempting to get hold of just tends of TouchPads.

Finally Comet were under pressure as the final units were put on sale there, and while they restricted the number of users who could access their site, the secure checkout was almost completely unusable if anyone managed to get there.

Only and, despite Play selling out their entire stocks and neither offering any price discounts, managed to stay online. At one point on Tuesday Amazon were offering the 32GB TouchPad at an astonishing £500.00, a cost over the precious RRP of the device.

Following this series of DDoS simulations facilitated by HP liquidations, we can conclude that only Play and Amazon have the infrastructure handy to facilitate substantial traffic load - and that the other online retailers have a lot to learn.

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