PKNIC Outage

PKNIC, the entity responsible for the global top level domain of Pakistan (.pk), is reportedly down for the past 8 hours. This is the latest in the series of now very ‘old pains’ that have now become synonymous with the domain controlling body.

While this do not have any immediate affect on the globally operating domains under the .pk ccTLD for now (due to the way the DNS system works), users trying to reach the site for updating their domain records or paying for their domains will be facing problems.

It is most likely that the problems would be resolved and we will see the site back soon.

However, once again, this incident points towards the weakness of PKNIC as a user-focused entity. Despite being run as a commercial operation, PKNIC has not been able to fulfill the basic need of communicating with their paying users such as providing them with a representative office or officer one can reach, a helpline one can dial, a blog that keeps its users informed about the latest with the entity and so on.

This lack of communication has been shedding a very bad light to its name. Unless PKNIC addresses the basic need of communicating with its paying users in ways that are a norm of today, it would only be normal and logical for the general public to view every move of PKNIC with doubts.

In an age where dozens, if not hundreds, of offshore companies having their ‘touchable’ operations going on in Pakistan, there is no reason why PKNIC which holds the linchpin of the Pakistani cyberspace can’t have a reachable and touchable representation in Pakistan.

I sincerely believe that this will help PKNIC and its users.

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41 Responses to “PKNIC Outage”

  1. Blogspot inaccessible from Pakistan : Don’t Block the Blog Says:

    […] Tee Eee has also stumbled across a worrisome outage on PKNIC.NET.PK which should also raise some alarm bells as it is Pakistan’s only […]

  2. Blogspot acting up in Pakistan yet again | Teeth Maestro Says:

    […] Tee Eee has also stumbled across a worrisome outage on PKNIC.NET.PK which should also raise some alarm bells as it is Pakistan’s only […]

  3. PKNIC Staff Says:

    The front end website is down because of data centre problem, which affects PKNIC websites (and other nine thousand servers for other customers of the data centre).
    The url link below gives the latest news and ETA. However it does NOT affect the DNS and any .PK domains operations which is entirely on a different network.

    For latest updates:
    http://forums.theplanet.com/index.php?&showforum=105

    As per classical murphy’s law, the series of events including fire department regulations prevented the rollover to the backup remote s.

    Summary of the outage cause from one of the data centre:

    This evening at 4:55pm CDT in our H1 data center, electrical gear shorted, creating an explosion and fire that knocked down three walls surrounding our electrical equipment room. Thankfully, no one was injured. In addition, no customer servers were damaged or lost.

    We have just been allowed into the building to physically inspect the damage. Early indications are that the short was in a high-volume wire conduit. We were not allowed to activate our backup generator plan based on instructions from the fire department.

    This is a significant outage, impacting approximately 9,000 servers and 7,500 customers. All members of our support team are in, and all vendors who supply us with data center equipment are on site. Our initial assessment, although early, points to being able to have some service restored by mid-afternoon on Sunday. Rest assured we are working around the clock.

  4. PKNIC Staff Says:

    Please note that this is the second outage (third if you count a fifteen minutes outage in 2002), for PKNIC in the last sixteen years since 1992. Those with technical background can make their own assessment about the quality of service. PKNIC will be re-evaluating the single point of failure prognosis for the roll over switching, and will be enhancing our DR and BCP plans and implementation.

    However, if you feel that Government can do a better job (at the moment) for the continuous operations then we encourage you to attend the PTA meeting next week regarding the possibility of the transition of .PK to the Government of Pakistan.

  5. Tariq Says:

    Yes! it will be best if Government of Pakistan takes over .pk, there will be two benefits:

    1. Prices of .pk will become reasonable and encourage more people to go for them.

    2. There will be some office with some human with whom one could communicate.

    We know we will have problems but then we can fix them, with PKNIK not willing to be physically present in Pakistan they should say goodbye to .pk

  6. Touseef Ikram Says:

    AOA Tee Emm,

    @ Tariq: I do not agree with you of handing over the registry to govt. This could only make it worst. At least, now I have some peace of mind that my domain treasure is safe and that I have equal chance of buying a potential goldmine.

    A better option could be to

    – invite private entities to own the operations of pknic in the form of multiple registrars like Network Solution operations were handed over to multiple registrars back in 1999.
    – recognize the domain registration as an industry on government level and form a separate regularity authority for it to interact with the registrars and domain owners to solve their problems and have some benchmarks in the Quality of Service.

    BTW, I had to change my server 3 days ago due to the exceptional user response on my site in the very first week of launch and my biggest fear for this transit phase was “pknic” itself and they proved each and every bit of it.

    I don’t think this would be related to this outage but after 3 consecutive emails in last 3 days, my website is still waiting a dns change and I had to set a redirect on my old server to my new ip which might be costing me some users. And I cannot even do anything about it except wait, wait n wait. It looks like as if the .pk registry is not even a side business of its owners as that also requires some time and communication. I wonder how and when pknic would take it a s a business and start caring about their customers.

  7. CompanyK Says:

    I am thinking of moving abroad because of chronic infrastructure problems in Pakistan.

  8. KLepo Says:

    …our page is one of the exceptions who got influenced directly. The page is down the whole Sunday.

    and to add to the Murphy Law, on Monday we planned to make a launch and get few hundred hits in the first 2-3 days….. maybe not 😛

    KLepo @ AIESEC

  9. Khan Says:

    I am working in hosting and domain registration company from 6 years, means that every day I shall have to contact PKNIC many times.

    Gov. of Pakistan should take over the .pk long time ago, but at the moment the gov. can not handle this service. Like PTCL it will become a gov. monopoly with a worst services.

    PKNIC service was slow, but from the last 1-2 years they did there best to make the service better.

    There are some points which PKNIC should consider in order to retain the pk domains with them:

    1). They shall have there offices all over Pakistan.
    2). Should hire more staff to resolve the queries quickly.
    3). The domain registration process should be automated:

    a. Domains shall have control panel.
    b. Domain control panel should provide additional services like .com, . net domains (domain redirection etc)
    c. DNS and MX record setting options should be provided.

    4). PKNIC should provide local telephone support to the customers.

    5). PKNIC should renevate there website as I have not seen a single change except the latest 2-3 news added in few months.

    6). PKNIC should allow 2 and 3 characters domain for .pk extension like http://www.abc.pk etc .

    But overall PKNIC provided the identity to Pakistan when no one even knows about the domain name etc.

    I hope and wish that PKNIC can make the services better and will continue to handle the PK domains.

  10. Amina Wahid Says:

    Dear PKNIC,
    First of all I say thanks for the posting. Now I see you really exist in this world.
    Second yes off course when Govt. Should takes .pk domain name they will give some good reputed companies to come and serve the people in batter ways.
    Do you remember that once days in mobile industry there was only have some # of connection existing and limited companies provide the services.
    PTA has good planning on it now we have almost more the companies and connections are working in the market.
    I personally thanks full if you can handover the .pk domain to PTA. Because i am sure they will look it in better at least from you.
    You also know very well how much money you earned last 18 years and how much you take profit and how many Jobs opportunities you created in the market.
    How many people you have trained for backup. Basically you have show yourself as a cheater not a businessman or services provide. If you do good planning and encourage and give some opportunities to new people and adopted the latest technologies never ever Govt. will involved in this business.
    Please you also accept your negligence in this way and are brave and admit that you do some mistakes.
    Anyway Thanks for leavening .pk domain under Govt. or other good companies.

  11. Faizal Rohman Says:

    Guys, I thank you all for your comments. I agree that Government should not take 100% control but take it from the current pknic management and hand over to multiple private companies under government supervision and ombudsmanship. Also lets keep the credit to right place….. real guys who have been working hard to bring this day….. Tee Em has put good efforts, Mr. Khalil Ahmad from pakhost/paknic has been doing a great job. See his public forum posts for those who don’t know…..
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/pakistanictpolicy/message/790

    He is the man who, FINALLY, dragged mysterious PKNIC to public forums…. As far as we can get rid of this current pknic management, we, people of Pakistan, have a WIN WIN game. Serious issues like hijacking domains on the name of fake DNDRC and fake Advisory Group, no customer support, down times and what not…. look like as far as pknic is concerned we are living in dark ages…. We should welcome government to setp in and do the right thing…. Also don’t forget, Mr. Ashar Nisar who is the owner of this pknic proprietership tried to sell off pknic first to Pakhost for 3.5 US million dollar and then backed out and tried to sell it off to PTA for 20 million US dollars under the table in conjunction with some PTA officials…. that is the time when I see Mr. Khalil Ahmad first time stepped in at public forums and saved our national money and knocked this secret deal out…. Keep it up good work guys, we salute to you all wo are putting their efforts and time for national interest….

    Also don’t forget there have been serveral occassions of one day to a few days duration when pknic website was up but domain check and whois service had been down…. Wasn’t that outage??????

  12. Asif iqabl Says:

    Dear All,

    its good for all. But please keep in mind Mr. Ashar Nisar is not only person can handel these million $ money alone. Their must be some people in the back of Mr. Ashar.

    I requested PTA to please open this business as industry level and as they done in mobile sector. Don,t give them control to currant management.

    Enough is enough more then fifteen year this guy keep money in his pocket.

    where are other Govt. Why his lips are seeling. why don,t take this control under Govt. is in Pakistan there was no any person have ability to take under Govt.

    I am just talking with people do you want this domain name are going in some people who play with us??

    Please please PTA take this domain name under your supervision and also do some Audit form currant management. Where was gone the money which is earned from this business.

  13. Touseef Ikram Says:

    I am really getting pissed off now. I went to their office yesterday in office timings at Saman Arcade Lahore, and met a chacha (probably the watchman) their.

    No one was there in the office and the chacha had no clue to contact anyone.

    Today I went again and met Mr. Tariq there who reluctantly told me that Asher is here these days and he has shifted his office to his house with a private secretary to assist him and the office location is a top secret and cannot be disclosed to anyone.

    When I told him about the sensitivity of the issue he again much reluctantly dialed a number (I wish i could noted that down.) and gave me the privilege to talk to a lady.

    Well, you can not show as much aggression as you want to a lady being a grown up in Pakistan, but well I did not remember that after listening that emails can not change my dns ips and I have to send them an authority letter to get this done.

    Well, I was like, :0 😐 :< “what the heck”

    After a long protest, the lady dropped that call by saying she can not do anything as she is not the one with the authority and she has to communicate to top management as if there are many managers sitting on top of her (same father-son company, huh!) if you want to get it done. And I asked, who’s at the top father or son? and she said whatever, and hanged up.

    So it is a start all over again considering the mail/letter will take at least 2 days to get processed and even then I would still need around 72 hours to get this thing propagated fully. My bounce rate has already jumped up from 20% to 65% in last 3-4 days and I yet don’t have a clue when this thing will be sorted out.

    I really wish this registry to be handed over by multiple private companies so we could see a healthy competition in the QOS and also see more value added services in the panel.

  14. Asif Iqbal Says:

    Dear Touseef Ikram,
    I told you that big Boss or manger please look it this.
    1- Mr. Ashar Nisar
    2- Mr. Zahid Jamil (Onwer of DNDRC.COM)
    3- Mr. Salman Ansari
    4- Mr. Imran Zia
    5- Mr. Basit (CEO of Brain net)
    And some Govt. Official also involved in this STOPIT PKNIC setup and earning lot of money from us.
    I am sure which meeting is going in PTA is just time wasting. Mr. Ashar will give some reward to some PTA official and get some more chance to still using of register for their own cause.
    Do you know our nations nature one Prime Minster imported and give chance to make money as he like just paid his share to our Govt. Official and then they will give him save path to leave the country.
    I am sure this is story will continue in the shape of PKNIC. Mr. Ashar is nothing he is just player. I am sure there was some hide hand in this setup how is using our National Asset for their benefits and making money.
    So please bear with us there was no change is going. I am in fever of PTA.
    If there was some good people working under PTA platform how is not beliving under desk money then i am sure there will be some positive change come. Other wise now way.
    So wait what PTA meeting give us result.

  15. Touseef Ikram Says:

    I have to pay like around 50 Thousand to them this month in domain renewels and I know I would bo doing this with very heavy heart.

  16. Asif Iqbal Says:

    Dear Touseef,

    You fifity thousand for PKNIC not a big amount . Dear he is earning monthly 50000 $ in the shape of PKNIC and making so called DNDRC type orgnazation.

  17. Khan Says:

    Any body there who attended the PTA forum/Seminar or what ever it was? what was there conclusion?

    LOL as far as I know PTA know nothing about registry or registrar basically in Pakistan we do not have a concern authority/department who look into these type of issues.

    PTA invited people from institutes, ISPs and software houses, how come they decide or suggest?

    In this way they can only address the personal issues only.

  18. Muhammad Sumair Says:

    I just came from PTA’s meeting and found that following.
    Alot of complains against PKNIC in which some are following.
    1- No Local Office in Pakistan or anywhere in world
    2- No Phone Support
    3- .com.pk modifications takes 2 to 7 days to complete.
    4- Currently DNS propagation time minimum 24hours – which is bad.
    5- PKNIC Website is down from last 3 or 4 days.
    IT Person from Govt. said following in meeting.
    1- There is alot of complains, So we think that PTA should take action to make it smooth.
    2- If PKNIC soled out to some other company of this world then if that new company make modification to shutdown then there will be a very big problem.
    3- So .pk belongs to Pakistan and it should be handle by govt with the help of our IT Sectors in Pakistan.
    4- Our IT sector should make an application/software to manage .PK domains.
    5- Also need to manage it’s security masseurs
    6- PTA have already done a lot of work for re-delegation from PKNIC to PTA after consulting PKNIC and ICANN & IANA.
    7- PTA ask to it’s Govt IT Department to manage .PK domains and they refuse to manage it.
    8- PTA still wanted to take control of .PK and managed by third party company under PTA.

    Advises to PKNIC
    1- Make Local Office with Phone support
    2- Reduce DNS propagation time
    3- Reduce DNS Modification time or make it online/realtime changes as in other TLD domains.
    4- Make Mirror Servers
    5- Reduce Price
    6- Make it open to all world to register as like TLD domains

    PKNIC Contact details.
    PKNIC Office : +92-42-5850191
    Technical Staff : +92-42-6115019

  19. Asif Iqbal Says:

    Dear Mr.Sumair,

    Thanks you for the update. its realy wounderful. According to you points that means PTA allow PKNIC to make money more from this business. (if i am not worng)

    currentrly there was no any person or authority to take controle of this important issue.

    Good Very Good. i alreday know about this activites.
    Now we have another way which we can nocking which one is Media. Please send sme news to our media and may bee they help us and open this issue in publice in better way.

    Please send comments what you all think about this??

  20. Simz Says:

    Taking in account the current situation – how worse can PKNIC possibly get should it be handed over to the government?

    Considering the fact that we have already given our “internet” reigns in the hands of the government i.e. PTA (PIE) and government regulatory bodies, handing over PKNIC wouldn’t much matter either. Infact I believe it will be a step towards betterment for PK domains (or atleast we can have some hope).

    The critical business components are missing from PKNIC’s setup as of now. It seems like an “absent” and “non-existing” company.

  21. Touseef Ikram Says:

    Well, I strongly oppose govt. taking over the pknic. govt should only act as a law/policy enforcement authority.

    I am least concerned who owns the company and takes the money home, either it Ashar or any XYZ. I am concerned with the quality of service and I dont think any govt setup can provide that. So be it any third party company, govt should make sure that they are running it as a business and caring their paying customers.

  22. A.R. Nasir Qureshi Says:

    I agree with Touseef Ikram. .pk should not go to the Govt., but surely not stay with the current PKNIC.

    Now it is more than 5 days and they are unable to setup another server costing USD 100 per month and put their website back on the net. This and the fact that they did not have a backup / DR plan shows their in-competence and their non-interest in providing service to their customers.

    I am not sure how many registrars working independently can provide services without having a single central Database, and if that data base stays with the current PKNIC, we will face problems again.

    May be a setup similar to the MNP setup where their is a central body owned by many, can work.

  23. Muhammad Imtiaz Shafiq Says:

    PKNIC by itself is playing two roles both as a registry and as a registrar. Actually the so called registrar’s of the PKNIC are resellers of the PKNIC which again have to contact pknic for domain registration and most of them are unable to register domain when PKNIC itself is down.

    Please look at the model of .in , .IN can be registered through any world reputed ICANN approved registrar like Godaday.com and others and the ccTLD manager for .IN is only controlling the registry and even for registry they have more than one server for their database.

    The registrar all over the world have independent and real time access to the .in registry.

    In case of .PK every thing is opposite. I really appreciate the role of Mr. Ashar Nisar being a focal person providing .PK ccTLD management over the last 16 years.

    But now the time has changed and now user want better experience and better services. So I do not mind if PKNIC still remains under the management of Mr. Ashar Nisar, but their should be a separate system for registry and domain registrar. There should also be a supervision either from the Govt. of Pakistan (PTA) or from some private governing body. This should not be a one man show as it is now.

    In addition to PKNIC the PKNIC,s handpicked/sister organization DNDRC which by itself is disputed due to DNDRC’s Controversial and unilateral authoritarian Decisions should be restructured.

    For domain disputes the ICANN rules and UDRP should be adopted. And each party should be given a fair chance to be heard.

    In addition the DNDRC should have no right to make a phone calls to the victims of their decisions to further threaten them.

    DNDRC itself is a cyber squatter by having a mimicking name to the ADNDRC.org (the ICANN approved body)

  24. babushka99 Says:

    Tee Emm – your blog’s comment section has started to sound like a day-time soap-opera. 🙂

  25. Muhammad Imtiaz Shafiq Says:

    Dear Babuska99,

    Have a nice day. I will have a little different opinion as all this a reality not an opera

  26. Touseef Ikram Says:

    does anyone know when this nightmare will end?

  27. Touseef Ikram Says:

    on another note, what if they did not have a remote backup and all the data of who owns what is lost?

    That could really create such a big mess. I could only pray that it should never happen. Ameen!

  28. Muhammad Sumair Says:

    Hi,

    Nightmare is now end. PKNIC site is now UP.

    PTCL already Offered to PKNIC to launch Mirror site at three locations in Pakistan. Still PKNIC not offering to PTCL for mirror site.

    Here is Latest message from PTCL.

    “This is a great catastrophe. PTCL is ready to have mirror site of .pk, as already mentioned.

    IMTIAZ AHMED
    General Manager – PTCL
    Dev (MM & BB), Islamabad.”

    I think soon there will be a good news.

  29. Touseef Ikram Says:

    yes, I have some good news to share.

    Today I went to their office again and to my surprise for the first time in the history of pknic, their office attendent Mr. Tariq has given me a card with a phone number, fax number and an other phone number and mobile number to reach.

    oh my God, I can’t beleive this. and thats not the end. I called on the land line number rightaway and I was thinking no one will attend this phone but well, it was being attended and the words I heard well can’t express my feelings. “Welcome to pknic”. And I was being handelled very politely and without any lame excuses. I checked my email and my DNS were changed already.

    There sure going to be some positive changes and as i mentioned earlier, I am not concerned “who” owns it but I am concerned more on “how” owns it.

    Let’s hope and pray for a better future management for pknic.

    BTW, I can scan the VCard if any one want to have a “zyarat” of it. 😉

  30. Asif iqabl Says:

    Dear Touseef Ikram,

    You must thankful to first PTA. who puch PKNIC to make sure your contact information is correct.

    Second thanks those people who do some efforts to bring this issue on front of us.

    I personally wants to thanks all of authority including those people who are working on this issue being a Pakistani.

    But i think PKNIC must be change their status and tell them what is his status in this business. is he registrar or registry.

    it PTCL or some other companies offer him to joint then why this is not give them chance to improve this services.

  31. Munnazir Says:

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    the goup so far gain many achievements In the inter departmental competation the group won 1st prize.
    On june 6th the group perform its first street theatre performance which was in support of lawyers movement and aware people about their problems and rights, this performance was covevered by jeo, express, channel 5 and other media orgganizations,
    the group is just formed and in the very beggining it is gaining attention.
    You all can get details about group and group members by visiting
    http://www.sodiumchloride1.blogspot.com

  32. Asif Iqbal Says:

    Hello,

    Can anybody told me that what append with PANIC in PTA meeting??

    is under the table option are worked or PTA really going to resolve this issue??

    Thanks

  33. Atif Says:

    well, this is first time I came across such a wonderful information regarding pknic. I always used to wonder who manages all this domain stuff.

    The worst thing about pknic is their old 90’s style domain registration procedure, there was no domain management system.

    Although they have improved the online control panel, still we canot use our domain Nameservers. can we ?

  34. irfan gul Says:

    any one can tell me that how can i setup my domain of pknic to my blogger blog

  35. Mubashir Fayyaz Says:

    I recently used Nexus Technologies to register a .PK Second Level domain. They said that .PK domain will take 24 hours to get registered. Yesterday I called them back and told them that 24 hours have passed away, then they said .PK takes 48 hours to get registered. Today I again called them back and told them about the 48 hours duration, they said that PKNIC takes 7 days to respond and to justify that your applied Domain is suitable or not, after that they will accept your application and will approve it. Point of telling you all about this is, I am registering .PK domain for the first time and I didn’t know about this lame 7 days period of time. Other TLD’s like .com .net .org .us .info and even .in gets registered in just a snap of fingers. Why the hell does PKNIC need so much time to think? No wonder we “Pakistani’s” are known as third world nation. My opinion would be ‘PKNIC should be handed over to PTA’ and Mr. Asher should give up his duty.

  36. Cyru Says:

    you are really genius person, i have blog but i want to register in Pakistan, how it could be.

  37. Qadir Says:

    thanks for such an informative information, thanks to all

  38. Classified in Pakistan Says:

    Why don’t they provide 3 chars .PK domains? Whereas our neighboring country India is already providing 3 chars .IN domains.

    There must not me any issue in this.

  39. location voiture Casablanca pas cher Says:

    My brother suggested I might like this website.
    He was totally right. This post actually made my day.

    You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this information!
    Thanks!

  40. Ghs Says:

    You guys can register your .pk domain with us in just Rs.2000 per 2 years.
    submit your request on http://www.globalhostingservice.com and we will get back to you soon…


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