April 07, 2011 23:04 ET

Live Domain Auction Crushed by User Requests Event Rescheduled After Server Crash

MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(Marketwire - Apr 7, 2011) - Everything was set perfectly. The video crew was lit and ready, the domain names lined up, the announcers seated and prepped, the auction start time only minutes away.

Several attendees were mingling about, eating and getting chair massages in the lavish Crib Suite at The Palms Hotel in Las Vegas. It was all as planned... except for one thing.

The auction web site was gone., a domain auction platform that facilitates 'lot' auctions of up to 100 names, had crashed under the weight of viewers who appeared to watch the live broadcast.

"Many more than we ever expected," says Mike Fiol, founder of, the firm holding the auction. "And because it is 'live,' they all came at the exact same time."

In fact, according to server host LiquidWeb, the number of available database connections (1,000) was far exceeded by the number of requests (1,700), grinding the entire system to a halt.

Fiol feels, in part, the marketing campaign they instituted pre-auction may be to blame.

"It was by far our largest marketing campaign to date, including a contest," he says, citing a sweepstakes held pre-auction where registrants could choose which names would or would not sell in the broadcast. "But we didn't see this coming."

The crash caused the firm to postpone the closing until Wednesday, April 13th when they again attempt to auction off sixty-five Internet URLs in a live broadcast.

"We've already made a myriad of upgrades to the server to support added requests," Fiol says. "Let's just hope there aren't even more viewers this time," he adds with nervous laughter.

"If that happens, I'm the one who will need the massage."

Auction may be viewed by visiting

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