KSU students, world feel Gmail failure impact

Kristyn Soltis

Google fixes e-mail service after two hours

A majority of the 36 million Google Mail users could not access their e-mail accounts yesterday afternoon when the Gmail service was unavailable for almost two hours.

Kent State’s e-mail service, which is hosted by Google, was also down.

The Official Google Enterprise Blog said the problem was resolved and access was restored at approximately 5:15 p.m.

“I understand how disruptive this service interruption was for our users and customers, and I’m very sorry for the inconvenience,” Matthew Glotzbach, product management director for Google Enterprise, said on the blog.

Gmail users around the world were affected by the outage, causing users to report problems on Google’s support site and pushing Gmail into one of the top trending topics on Twitter.

“For every tweet mentioning that gmail was down, there were 3 complaining about people mentioning that gmail was down,” said Twitter user doctorzaius.

During the outage, Gmail users were able to access their e-mail accounts using IMAP or POP. Users could also access old mail using Gmail off-line.

The Gmail outage came as Google is in the process of attempting to compete with Microsoft Corp and IBM to expand its service among business users.

“I cannot get on Gmail,” wrote one user on the Gmail discussion board. “I cannot access the attached documents I must read for my job. I don’t want a stupid error message, I don’t want 58 people sending me to an article. I want the problem fixed. I bill by the hour. Every hour Gmail is down costs me money. Now when the heck is this going to fixed?”

Google Mail has experienced similar outages during the past year.

A similar problem in February led Google to formally apologize and extend subscriptions for some of its premium services. Other Gmail outages also occurred last April, August and October.

Google is investigating the problem to prevent similar situations in the future, and a full report of the incident will be available on the Google Apps Status Dashboard.

Contact technology reporter Kristyn Soltis at [email protected].