They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me
dr_phil_physics

The Week That Amazon Broke The Internet

Whew? This evening the Kindle Fire HD has been working okay. So is Mrs. Dr. Phil's Kindle Fire HDX. That was not true earlier.

A week ago I complained about Google and Wikipedia were insistent on using mobile modes in the Kindle's Silk browser. I don't want to use the anemic mobile versions. Add to that this week, WMU's email system joined the mobile first club. Gad.

I speculated at the time that it was either collusion or related to a new update to Silk pushed on Tuesday a week ago. Well... I have a feeling something got pushed this Tuesday, which seems to becoming National Let's Break Your Software Day™. Either on the Kindles or the servers at Amazon.

I started getting messages that such-and-such webpage, that I use all the time, couldn't load because the request timed out. Then SSL request timed out. Then SSL protocol error. Then sometimes the pages would work. And then error again.

Coupled to this is a problem where the Kindles interfere with each other -- the laptops happily pick up a new IP address from the router, but the Kindles try to keep the last one, so in between sessions, the addresses can be taken by another machine. Yeah, I could try to assign specific addresses to specify MAC addresses on the router, but only did that years ago for the HP Deskjet 6980. Anyway, when a page won't load, cycling the WiFi usually fixes it. Except this week.

My other workaround is to connect to my Linux desktop on Always On PC and go through its servers. Except it couldn't connect. Curses, foiled again!

I Googled Kindle Fire HD SSL error and found two posts from 2011 (Fire) and 2013 (Fire HD) which had some interesting things. In one forum, someone commented that the Kindles use Amazon as their SSL certificate verification server. Oh yeah? So the problem could be a bad push to the Kindle -- or bad table propagation on the servers. If the later, the problem might improve over time. Which it did.

The other post was on an Amazon help forum, and some dipwad from Amazon kept on saying the solution to SSL problems was to use the mobile apps for those websites. Well that's a shitty thing to recommend. The whole point of having the Silk browser is that it allows "the real Internet" on your tablet. Not every bloody website has a damned app. And even if it did, I don't want to use them!

Besides, I do use the Facebook app for some things, and it was failing to connect to Facebook, too. And when it did connect on Thursday, at one point I was only getting posts from Tuesday.

Seems like bad policy to suggest that the fix is to use other software.

Anyway, it's 3:04am on Saturday, and the Kindle Fire HD seems to have settled down. I was afraid I was going to have to do a full restore to defaults reset. I updated Norton Anti-Malware, but found no obvious intrusion. Maybe Amazon fixed their servers. We'll never know.

A problem gone is a problem gone. Until the next one, of course.

Dr. Phil
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