The Mercury retrograde kicked in big time on Wednesday as Facebook suffered an eight hour-outage that also affected Instagram and Facebook Messenger.\nNo one was believed to be harmed; a few might have even had offline interactions with other human beings.\n\nFacebook said it wasn\u2019t an attack, like a Denial of Service attack, and has since issued a statement attributing it to a configuration error.\n\u201cYesterday, we made a server configuration change that triggered a cascading series of issues. As a result, many people had difficulty accessing our apps and services," said Travis Reed, a Facebook spokesman. "We have resolved the issues, and our systems have been recovering over the last few hours. We are very sorry for the inconvenience and we appreciate everyone\u2019s patience.\u201d\nThe question for me is how could a company with redundant data centers around the U.S., not to mention internationally, be taken down like this? All told it has seven data centers in the U.S. Redundancy is supposed to help prevent this kind of problem.\nWell, not exactly. In the case of a bug or operating problem, redundancy doesn\u2019t help. In fact, it can spread the problem quickly, notes analyst Rob Enderle.\n\n\n \n\n\n\u201cRedundancy can help with certain things like a complete system failure, but it doesn\u2019t help with a virus or software bug because it can replicate it, so redundancy can\u2019t help here,\u201d he said.\nA software bug shouldn\u2019t have affected Instagram and Messenger, but Enderle figures that the problem was related to a shared-code issue, and whatever it was that failed used the same code or a derivative of that code, so it replicated across all services. \u201cAt the very least they should have firewalled the services to avoid something like this,\u201d he said.\nStill, Enderle thinks something else going on here because in this day and age, an eight-hour outage shouldn\u2019t last this long unless you are under attack, and Facebook said it\u00a0 was not under attack. \u201cThey should have rolled back whatever it was in minutes. It\u2019s not like they are a novice company. This should not have happened,\u201d he said.\nAnd given the trust issues Facebook has had, it\u2019s in the best interests of the company to come clean, if only for the sake of its advertisers. Most of us just went on with our day.