Canvas experiences outage linked to problems with Amazon

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Check for updates in the mass ACES email.

By Michelle Delgado

The Canvas learning management system used at all Alamo Colleges is experiencing an outage that began at 10:37 a.m. today.

At 1:47 p.m. an email was sent to students and employees notifying them of the problem that originates from the Amazon Web Service.

“We get an email from an alert system” when the website goes down, Dr. Thomas Cleary, vice chancellor for planning, performance and information services, said in a telephone interview.

Amazon Web Service is the website provider that the district uses to provide Canvas.

“It is not only impacting us but thousands who use the web service,” Cleary said.

The email said there is no estimated time when Canvas will be back online.

An email included a link to a status report from Instructure, which produces Canvas.

The update said the Amazon service began experiencing a large scale networking issue at 11:03 a.m.

At 1:05 p.m. the update said, “The majority of Canvas users are still unable to access their Canvas site due to the outage with AWS.”

The update included that Canvas’ own DevOps team is investigating to work around the problem for a faster recovery.

Because Canvas is the homepage for all courses at Alamo Colleges, students and faculty are unable to enter or access assignments through Canvas.

“Canvas is a platform for not only online classes but face-to-face classes as well,” said Usha Venkat, director of information technology.

Many professors provide documents or PowerPoints which can’t be accessed by students if the website is down, she said.

“They have not yet indicated a reason for the outage,” Cleary said of the Amazon service. “I’m speculating that it is pretty serious since they have not answered back.”’


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