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London Stock Exchange Group blames “corrupted server” for Eikon data feed outages. But…

London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) CEO David Schwimmer blamed “a corrupted server issue with our authentication system” for a string of recent Eikon outages in the wake of LSEG’s $2.7 billion acquisition of the markets data and messaging system provider’s parent Refinitiv in January

“Outages are completely unacceptable to me, they’re unacceptable to our customers. [The issue was] not with the underlying services or products including Eikon, and we have identified the issue and we are addressing it,” said Schwimmer cryptically on LSEG’s interim earnings call, August 6, 2021.

(Eikon provides news and market data on everything from FX to fixed income, equities, commodities, alternative investments and real estate. It is used by hundreds of thousands of finance professionals.)

The comments by Schwimmer hint broadly at something falling over somewhere, but for curious IT professionals, provide little insight into what keeps going wrong. Pressed by The Stack LSEG declined by email to offer more detail on the precise nature of the outage or the specific system at fault.

A look at the Refinitiv developer community hub suggests users have faced regular bugs when users try to pull data from Eikon using the API; the dreaded “Error Code 500 “Internal Server error” appearing to be a persistent bugbear for customers, with one bewailing “severe issues with the Eikon Python API” and others lamenting a “nightmare”.

Refinitiv’s developer hub suggests not-infrequent woe. (Some of it user-side…)

There’s a “well-known problem… caused by that fact that [the] httpx library used by Eikon library ignores Windows system settings of proxy bypassing for local addresses and forwards requests to local addresses to the proxy as well” one user commented on the developer forum this year.

Issues around corporate proxy / firewall / network rules blocking communication between the Eikon Data API and Eikon API Proxy also appear to be a perennial headache for users and Refinitiv support.

A support document last updated March 2021 notes that “in the event that APIPROXY service is falled to start. A general guideline is to restart your machine and Eikon Desktop application.” If that fails, users are urged to contact the Refinitiv Helpdesk with APIProxy, SxS and Eikon Data API logs.

More broadly, LSEG suggested its Refinitiv integration was going well, citing “good progress” and a claimed “£77 million of run-rate cost synergies realised at H1. Full year guidance for run-rate cost synergy delivery increased from £88 million to £125 million,” LSEG said. Hopefully the Refinitiv DevOps team get some of that cash.

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Ed Targett

Ed Targett is founder of The Stack. He has previously served as editor at Tech Monitor, Computer Business Review, and Roubini Global Economics.

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