DENVER (AP) -The Colorado Rockies planned to relaunch online sales of World Series tickets Tuesday after their first attempt was stopped by a computer-system crash the team blamed on an ``external, malicious attack.''
The Rockies were forced to stop the online-only sale of tickets after about two hours Monday when 8.5 million hits overwhelmed the servers set up to take the orders.
The Rockies later said they were victims of an attack but neither the team nor the company hired to run the sale, Irvine, Calif.-based Paciolan Inc., have offered any specifics of what happened.
Rockies spokesman Jay Alves declined comment Tuesday until the ticket sale was complete.
Dave Marcus of McAfee Avert Labs, the research arm of antivirus software maker McAfee Inc., said Paciolan could have been the target of a ``denial-of-service'' attack.
Under that scenario, attacking computers overwhelm Web servers with repeated but false requests to connect. When the Web server signals the attacking computer to proceed, the attacker doesn't respond, tying up the server.
``In a certain kind of denial-of-service attack, you never complete that handshake,'' Marcus said.
Sometimes hackers launch denial-of-service attacks to be a nuisance, but in some cases they are used to disable a competitor, he said.
The Rockies said fewer than 500 tickets were sold Monday before the sale was shut down. All those tickets will be honored, the team said.
Throughout the day Monday, anxious fans formed lines at the Coors Field box office but left disappointed after security guards insisted no tickets would be sold there.
The Rockies originally planned to sell tickets at Coors Field and the team's Dugout Stores in the Denver area as well as online. They announced Wednesday all sales would be online, saying that would be more fair.
The Series opens in Boston with games on Wednesday and Thursday. Games 3 and 4 will be on Saturday and Sunday in Denver. If there is a Game 5, it will be played Monday in Denver.
The Red Sox held a random online drawing for the right to buy tickets to Fenway Park games, said Ron Bumgarner, vice president of ticketing. The Oct. 15 drawing attracted more than 350,000 fans; the winners bought tickets at a private sale.
The team also had a telephone sale for fans without computer access, Bumgarner said.
A limited number of tickets will also go on sale at Fenway Park on game day, with fans allowed to line up five hours before game time.

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