SDSU online classes disrupted by Zoom, Canvas outage


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Due to the coronavirus pandemic San Diego State has transitioned to primarily online instruction using Zoom, Canvas and Blackboard.

by Katelynn Robinson, Assistant News Editor

While power outages and broken water mains have cancelled classes in the past, San Diego State faced a different type of outage, the impacts of which were acutely felt by the more than 35,000 students, faculty and staff learning and teaching during a pandemic. 

On Sept. 28 at 4:30 p.m. a problem with the university’s Microsoft 365 server caused outages for all SDSU Canvas, Blackboard, Zoom and Gmail users, according to SDSU Instructional Technology Services. 

As of 5:45 p.m. Microsoft has restored login access to Zoom, Canvas, Blackboard and Gmail according to an SDSU tweet. 

The hour-long interruption impacted several online courses, bringing virtual instruction to a standstill and making it impossible for professors to hold virtual office hours.

Microsoft identified a change within the system, that has been rolled back, which may have caused the initial login problems. However, Microsoft said in a tweet that the roll back didn’t seem to improve the situation. 

“We’re rerouting traffic to an alternate infrastructure to improve the user experience while we continue to investigate the issue,” Microsoft 365 Status tweeted. “Please visit for additional information.”

Users who are logged into sessions that began before the issues occurred are able to continue their session according to the Microsoft 365 Office website.

“We’ve determined that a specific portion of our infrastructure is not processing authentication requests in a timely manner,” the website said. “We’re pursuing mitigation steps for this issue. In parallel, we’re rerouting traffic to alternate systems to provide further relief to the affected users.”

Several SDSU Canvas applications are at “Degraded Performance Status” while some remain “Operational.” 

Microsoft tweeted at 5:40 p.m. the services had improved and would continue to be monitored.+

“We’re seeing improvement for multiple services after applying mitigation steps and we’ll continue monitoring the services to ensure full recovery,” Microsoft 365 Status tweeted.