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ltdu
Frequent Visitor

SharePoint Online sometimes returns "HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable" and Flow fails

We have developed several Flows which work mostly with SharePoint API. Usually we use "Get item", "Update item" and "Send an HTTP request to SharePoint" actions.

 

Most of the time everything works as it should. However, sometimes actions fail seemingly because SharePoint Online server becomes unavailable:

 

service_unavailable_1.png

 

Message in that JSON shows this:

 

service_unavailable_2.png

 

I've seen this "HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable." error message on-prem. Usually this happens during IISRESET. And I do understand Microsoft has to restart SharePoint Online servers as well, however, Flow should be able to handle this kind of problems.

 

As far as I can tell, Flow automatically retries request if it receives HTTP status 408 (request timeout), 429 (too many requests) or anything from 5xx. In this case SharePoint return message clearly states "HTTP Error 503". However, action itself displays "Status code: 400". I think this is the reason why Flow fails - it does not even try to resend request to the same URL.

 

Currently I don't have any viable solution. I could add "run after failed" path to each SharePoint action and put them in some kind of loop, but this seems very complicated.

 

Has anyone experienced this problem? Maybe there is a normal solution which does not involve redoing everything from the start?

 

5 REPLIES 5
v-alzhan-msft
Community Support
Community Support

Hi @ltdu ,

 

Does the flow would work most of the time and would fail sometimes?

Could you please share more details about the issue?

 

Best regards,

Alice       

 

Community Support Team _ Alice Zhang
If this post helps, then please consider Accept it as the solution to help the other members find it more quickly.

Hi @v-alzhan-msft ,

 

Thanks for quick response.

 

Yes, most of the time Flow works without any problems. This error occures in less than 1% of all flow-runs. And it happens at random places. In some flow branches we have sequences of SharePoint actions and it randomly fails on 3rd or 4th one.

I was able to replicate this problem with on-prem SharePoint.

 

Setup is quite simple: do-until action, set to run for 1 minute, send HTTP request to SP, and 1s delay.

I manually start this flow, wait several seconds for it to execute couple cycles, and on SharePoint frontend server execute IISRESET.

 

Same problem - action does not try to repeat request

 

service_unavailable_3.png

 

Ingrid
Advocate II
Advocate II

@ltduHave you any solution found? I have the same problem.

@Ingrid me too same problem, any possible solutions anyone?

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