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Xbox Live Has Been Down for Hours With Users Unable to Log in [Update: It's Back]

Gizmodo logo Gizmodo 2/26/2021 Alyse Stanley
a person in a dark room © Photo: Kevork Djansezian (Getty Images)

If you’ve been struggling to get into your Xbox Live account, you’re not alone. Microsoft’s online gaming service has been down for hours this Thursday afternoon, with widespread reports of Xbox players being unable to log in at all.

Users started noticing issues shortly after 3 p.m. ET, according to DownDetector and the Xbox Status page. Microsoft has since confirmed it’s investigating the outage, which has taken out several of its services. No estimated time of repair has been announced so far. When reached for comment, an Xbox Live spokesperson said they’re looking into the issue.

“We are aware that users may not be able to sign-in to Xbox Live at this time. Our teams are currently investigating to fix this issue,” said Xbox Support on Twitter. A few hours later, it posted the following update:

“Our teams are continuing their investigation and have found that users experiencing sign-in issues may have issues with Purchasing Content and Party Chat as well.”

Along with accounts and profiles, services like the Xbox Live Store, multiplayer gaming, and cloud gaming are all currently offline according to Xbox.

Xbox Live had a few hiccups in the early months of the pandemic in 2020 as millions flocked to the service to stave off quarantine blues and connect amid social distancing measures. But this is the service’s first major outage since Microsoft rolled out its next-gen consoles, the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S, in November.

It’s unclear what issue may have caused this outage, but to take out so many of Microsoft’s services, you know it’s gotta be big. You can check out updates at the Xbox Support page here in the meantime, and Gizmodo will update this story as it develops. My sympathies to anyone who was planning to kick back with friends in a party this evening.

Update: 2/25/2021, 8:00 p.m. ET: Added additional context.

Update 2/25/2021, 9:41 p.m. ET: Xbox Live is back online! Xbox Support sent out a tweet saying as much after the outage dragged on for roughly six hours, though a few users said they’ve been unable to log in for as long as eight hours.

Several users on Twitter and DownDetector have reported that they’re able to log in to their accounts and use Xbox Live again, and a Microsoft rep confirmed that the service is back online.

“We resolved the issue that was preventing some users from accessing Xbox Live,” a company spokesperson told Gizmodo.

Since that statement is noticeably light on details as to what on Earth happened to cause such a widespread outage, we’ve reached out for clarification and will update this blog when we hear back. But for now, the good news is that Xbox Live is back up and running.

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