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eBay zapped by third outage in three days

eBay suffers its third outage in three days, as technical problems continue to plague the preeminent online auction house.

eBay suffered its third outage in three days this morning, as technical problems continue to plague the preeminent online auction house.

eBay spokesman Kevin Pursglove said the company took down its servers at 4:38 a.m. PT and had the company's backup system up and running in place of its main system around 6 a.m.

But many eBay users reported having trouble with the site before and after the official outage. On the eBay message boards, users spoke out against the continued problems: "I love your newest feature," one user wrote. "No access to my auctions, no photos, no bids, no searching, no refunds…and no sales!"

Pursglove said today's outage was similar to the ones the company has had throughout the last two days, which were previously reported by CNET News.com. eBay noticed a slowdown on its system because its computers were generating an "artificial load," which creates a simulated increase in Web site traffic. To reset the system, the company replaced its main network with a parallel system, called a "warm backup."

Pursglove said the company has not determined why the computers have been generating the artificial load and does not know whether the issue is hardware- or software-related.

On a positive note, Pursglove said the company has been pleased by the performance of its backup systems.

"This is what the warm backup system was designed to do," Pursglove said.