In my "questions..." post, I referenced a blog post by Richard Hundhausen detailing his bad experience using the Akamai download manager to get VS 2008.  It appears it has been a very hot topic in the blogosphere.  People have been working not stop to address the issues and we apologize for the problems.  We are moving to both patch the issues in the Akamai download manager and to provide more of the content via the MSDN download manager.  The problem, of course, is that we fear MSDN may not be able to handle all of the load so we are watching it carefully.  Status I saw on Tuesday showed an average download rate of about 10 Gbps across all of our servers netting an average of 1,000 downloads per hour.  That's a lot of bits flying across the wire.

Here is an excerpt of a response from the person at Microsoft responsible for the download infrastructure.  It has been posted on many blogs/forums:

"Hi, we have recognized the variety of issues that need improvement ASAP, and your inputs have been great. We NEVER want our customers to be exposed to the system failures on any kind, but even with best of intentions, some issues creep up. We are working on the revision to the (third party) DLM 2.2.2.1 and trying to get the fixes in over the weekend. In the mean time, most critical downloads have been posted to MSDN's download service, so please download what you need from the MSDN Subscriber Downloads.

Based on your feedback, we are trying to implement the fixes to the following:

- DLM should download to Downloads by default (Vista)

- the proxy issue that crashes the IE if proxy server is enabled but the address field is left empty

- Retry on downloads: we have seen that if your session expires (you lose your network connection because PC goes to sleep, for example, and your MSDN session expires) the downloads can’t be restored (we are looking in to this)

- DLM cannot be restarted if you close it and try again later (session issue again)

A new DLM will be coming soon, by the end on 11/07 at the latest, and we are trying to hurry it up as soon as possible.

We recognize the inconvenience this caused you and others who experience it.  Thanks for your patience and support. We are doing all we can to make sure this does not happen again.

Thomas"

Again, we're sorry for the inconvenience.

Brian