Posted by: craigtech | April 1, 2011

Libyan domain names

Much has been made of “Gadafi taking down the .ly domains” over the last few weeks, with many wondering what would happen to the likes of, and our service The common consensus was not to worry as of the five root DNS nameservers only two are based in Libya, with two in the US and one in the Netherlands. All five would need to be out of service for .ly domains to start failing.

But it turns out this was missing the point; starting at around 4pm yesterday (31st March) all traffic to our site stopped and no emails have arrived since. We don’t host anything in Libya, nor do we have any affiliation to it. We use google apps and have a dedicated server, both hosted in the US.

A US hosting company called host Libyan Spider, a Libyan ISP who manage a huge number of domain registrations for the .ly space. Softlayer have stopped all of Libyan Spiders services citing the recent UN sanctions of Libya.

From @LibyanSpider:
Our service provider: has shutdown all our dedicated servers with them because of the UN/US sanctions which doesnt apply to us

LibyanSpider is a private company and NOT a government affiliated company. has falsely shut us down for the wrong reasons! shut down our servers, this is why you can not access your website nor we can access ours.

We are sorry guys, but this is out of our hands. Please contact and let them know that YOU are affected by this. is still up, which could be for a number of reasons, either their DNS is managed in a different system or their DNS records have been setup to be cached for a long period of time (unfortunately we have just completed a migration to a new web host and our TTL – the time a DNS setting should be cached for – was only 1 hour. If was to be affected it would have a huge affect on internet usage, particularly twitter. I’m not sure who hosts bit.lys DNS but I hope it’s not Libyan Spider and I hope whoever’s hosting their DNS doesn’t get the same idea!

I have contacted Softlayer, no response yet. I hope they work this out quickly! Otherwise many innocent lives (startups) may be lost… If you want to support us and them drop them an email at

It’s also great timing following the launch of Startup UK and Startup America!!


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