Climate Audit and surfacestations.org are down

Steve McIntyre’s Climate Audit is down due to excessive traffic that may have been caused by either or a combination of these things:

1- Rush Limbaugh mentioning the website in Thursday’s Show

2- Denial of Service (DOS) attacks

3- Being Slashdotted the next day

4- All of the above

A new server is being deployed, in the meantime, the story on how Steve McIntyre discovered NASA’s Y2K data processing error is below.

As for surfacestations.org, we are still trying to determine what has occurred.

UPDATE: 8/10/07 9AM The fiber optic cable that serves surfacestations.org has been cut. No ETA on repair yet.

UPDATE 2: 8/10/07 1:30PM The fiber cut was due to a railroad repair gone awry on Southern Pacific between Oakland and Santa Clara, fiber was cut. It is slowly being restored. It affected other places in Northern California too such as Lake Tahoe

UPDATE 3: 8/10/07 3:20PM Service has been restored after a 24 hour outage

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42 thoughts on “Climate Audit and surfacestations.org are down

  1. Perhaps they took it down on purpose so we won’t be able to investigate them. If so, then so much for the Freedom of Information Act. Lucky for us, Google maintains a cached copy of the page.

  2. Thanks for the info – it gets a bit worrisome when multiple sites suddenly vanish!

  3. Neal Boortz today did a spiel on the story about NCDC removing access. He got a lot of details wrong. I emailed you something I sent to him in response.
    But now I know why it never went thru. When surfacestations.or is back up you’ll get 5 or so emails from me, all the same mail!

  4. Anthony, I’m perfectly willing to host a mirror site for you on my server, if you’re interested.

  5. Its amazing that since Algore put out the word about the deniers being paid for by all the nasty big companies and lobbyists that these two sites have had trouble. I wanted to become a volunteer to check out sites in my lil part of the country/world to see if they meet the specs as well. Hopefully they come back.

  6. Congratulations Anthony, you must have made the big time if you can’t get surfacestation.org back up.
    If Limbaugh mentioned you then you may well get calls from various talk show hosts trying to get you on the air. Pick and choose carefully, some of these guys are dangerously stupid.

  7. Climate Audit was not only linked by Instapundit but also from Hot Air, Michelle Malkin, Ace of Spades and a good deal more of the Conservative blogosphere. These are big time sites, many getting over 100,000 hits per day.
    It may have also been a DOS, but I’m sure a big part of it was from the friendly links. Michelle Malkin had your site and Steve’s site very prominantly quoted and linked. You probably got 10,000 hits from her alone today.
    BTW, congratulations to Steve, Dr. Pielke and yourself. Just maybe this will cause GISS to be a bit more forthcoming with their methodology.

  8. It wasn’t just the blog hits. The webmaster for http://climateaudit.org says the blog has been knocked off the internet by a DDOS attack. They’re moving to a different server, and should be back up in a few days.

  9. Both DNS servers for surfacestations.org are down. Either the DDOS attack is now targeting your webhost as well, or there is coincidental outage at ItWorks.com.

  10. I suspect it was a pure traffic issue. Also, Real Climate (also wordpress) seemed to be having similar but less severe problems around the same time yesterday (it gave me the same error message), though it is up again and CA is toast.

  11. Where can I find information that shows the location of stations. I will volunteer in Florida. Would suggest a distributed network of free webpages to host the same data. Cant shut them all down.

  12. It reminds me of the Mr. Smith Goes To Washington.
    So now we know why the Newsweek story.
    And the UK Gov. weather service predicting global warming with a vengence in 2009.
    Raise your hand if you believe in coincidence.

  13. This is the most titanic battle of modern times. A David without even a slingshot rises to do battle against the mighty Goliath, the Taylor Global Warming machine, allegedly crooked inside and out. Yeah, and for my money, you can cut out the “allegedly.”
    I picture Hansen on the phone. It goes something like this, “He can raise public opinion against us – if any part of this sticks…
    And Gore on the other end, “Aah, he’ll never get started. I’ll make public opinion out there within five hours! I’ve done it all my life. I’ll blacken this punk so that he’ll – You leave public opinion to me. Now, Jim, I think you’d better go back into the office and keep those scientists lined up.”

  14. They say they have not isolated where the cut is yet. Traceroute shows we can’t get past bay area.
    Not a pleasant time here, my entire business is down. Using a cable modem to communicate for now but it can’t be reconfigured to run our server farm.

  15. Papertiger, I think it is important that we not jump to conclusions. Stranger coincidences have happened. I’m just going to wait until I can get all the facts. For all I know, it could have been a simple ditch digging incident at some construction or farming operation. Lots and lots of farms between here and SFO.
    Could be somebody turned off a switch accidentally. Happened once at my TV station, on a Friday. Some guy is doing circuit upgrades at CO and installed new T1 amps. End of day/week comes and he turns them off as he leaves “because they were not active yet” but when he throws breaker doesn’t realize that a bunch of other active T1’s are connected to same AC circuit.
    I had to go pound on door of telco central office because online tech support was clueless…once I got somebody’s attention at CO, explained problem, they went and checked, and turned breaker back on. took me almost 36 hours to get that simple thing accomplished.
    Let’s get back to the ballgame, now “how ’bout those temperatures?”

  16. If you want to see the post, just go to google, type in the following: site:www.climateaudit.org
    and do a search. Look at the cached result. For the specific post, add “hansen y2k”.

  17. This is not good. Steve caught an error but the conservative media is treating this as a smoking gun disproving global warming, which it doesn’t. Hansen’s group fixed the glitch (although there appear to be differences in the data pre 2000 which means they changed something else) and even acknowledged Steve’s effort. The celebrations may make getting information from them even harder than it is now. Secondly, the trolls and off comment posts on Climate Audit are annoying as it is. I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like when the site comes back on line.

  18. Barry W.,
    Without “hottest year on record was 1998” the climate looks more naturally variable.
    Scientifically as you say: this is minor.
    Propaganda wise it is a big thing.

  19. Good point, BarryW. I am also concerned that the Conservative blogs seem to be focused on and overstating the impact of the temperature changes. Not surprising when non-technical people with an agenda (an agenda I may agree with, but it’s still an agenda) report on technical issues.
    The main issue here is the unwillingness of GISS and the others to disclose their methodology. It should not require gifted amatuers to reverse engineer the work of the professionals to insure the job was done right.

  20. Congratulations Anthony!! You and Steve have surely “set the cat among the pigeons”. I’m sorry that the message gets wide distribution through Limbaugh politicization, but better that way than not at all. We may now see a move toward real careful, holistic and honest science from the Climate Community. I hope Hansen will start things by admitting his error and correcting some of his recent alarmism. Murray

  21. I agree with the concern over an over-reaction. Ultimately AGW will be proven or disproven based on proven scientific facts. However, it has clearly morphed into a political litmus test. And it has become a rallying cry for a widerange of public policy initiatives that may or may not be appropriate. At this point, besides the lack of openness around data and methids, the thing that gets me is the “sky is falling” mindset. If you haven’t read it, I recommend Aaron Wildvsky’s “But Is It True?”

  22. “the conservative media is treating this as a smoking gun disproving global warming, which it doesn’t.”
    No, it sure doesn’t. It’s a one-time, limited adjustment. (But it’s indicative of what happens when you refuse to release your methods.)
    What I am beginning to suspect is going to knock the socks off the NOAA is the surfacestations project. That–could–make a 0.15C/century adjustment seem like a mere blip!

  23. The response on RealClimate only brings up more questions. Why are they splicing data from other sources? What does the code do to homogenize the data? Of course they report the temp to hundredths of degree but it’s only accurate to .1 deg.

  24. “The celebrations may make getting information from them even harder than it is now.”
    True, but one can’t operate under those strctures.
    They think AWatts, St.Mac,, and Docs P. are not nice. Are they therefore to smile in their faces and tell them they are nice? Scientific and academic method are bottom line. If you have to beg for them, they doen’t exist. It’s s’posed to be a put-up-or-shut-up deal–without a “niceness” requirement.
    Besides, this “dinky little” (not) correction may well turn out to be small potatoes compared with the fire-and-ice storm that the surfacestations project is going to kick up when it’s completed!
    Come to think of it, since the GSIS–seems–to be:
    A.) Adjusted up rather than down (!), overall, and lowballed on UHIE, and
    B.) Modern figures adjusted upwards even more than the old figures (!)
    It seems to me this is the exact opposite way the numbers need to be adjusted. It’s so bad, I think we’d be better off using the raw data.

  25. TCO
    I think there are silly people on all sides of the climate debate, as well as thoughtful ones. Could you expain who you mean by JAE and why he is silly?
    Evan I had hoped that Hansen and crew “owing one” to McIntyre would have facilitated access to the code. Ain’t gonna happen now without a fight because of the “celebrations”.

  26. After decades of pro-AGW propaganda, I can’t complain at all if the skeptics get to crow a little.
    For the AGW side to make a credible complaint about this, they would have to make a principled stand against the pro-AGW propagandists, demand accurate reporting from the media, and drop all objections to independent review and audits of their methods.
    In fact, their constant ad hominem attacks against any and all skeptics cost them the whole argument. If they truly have the truth on their side, the facts alone would settle the argument. Instead, they make insidious comparisons to Holocaust denial and refuse to share the key raw data, methods, and algorithms that they claim prove their case.
    The real problem is that a subject that should be treated as pure science has been made political, and worse it is globally political. The effect of this is that propagandizing results is inevitable, and science is done irreparable harm in the eyes of the lay public.
    I have believed all along that the climate science community has had an obligation to reign in political uses of their results. One means of doing that would have been to be scrupulously open about methods, algorithms and data.
    Anthony’s surface stations survey project is an example of how it should be done, and he deserves all the accolades he’s getting for that effort (shared, of course, with the volunteers).
    Steve McIntyre’s efforts to audit the methods and statistics are another example of how it should be done.
    Hansen and NASA GISS’s collective response to Steve to my eye are typical of AGW propaganda. Yes, they apparently listened to a criticism of the data and made a change. But what is telling is all the things they have not done. They did not open up the source code. They did not reveal the algorithms. They did not make any significant effort to notify users of the data of their change. Worse, they are engaged in actively downplaying the importance of the change which is propaganda all by itself.

  27. After three days without success I was briefly able to access CA today. John A’s post seems to imply the site went down from all the friendly links. Hopefully that was the cause and not a DDOS. Jon also says the site can be accessed through a limited number of subnets (whatever that means) but presumably it explains the very limited availability.
    Steve has two excellent new posts detailing the significance of the recent discovery and also discussing some other unexplained GISS adjustments (“rural cooling islands” at good sites and how 1934 seems to have cooled over the years).
    If CA is going to be down much longer I hope we can get these cross-posted. The public really needs to read this stuff

  28. It appears that climateaudit.org is up
    on the old server, but access to it is
    limited to such portions of the web as
    the old server can handle.
    John A is adjusting the filtering of
    “subnets”, and those who get through,
    perhaps temporarily as in my case, see
    the usual stuff. Those that don’t get
    through see the “access forbidden” screen.
    He expressed a hope that the new server
    would be available by Monday.

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