back to article Google's email service goes down

Google's Gmail has once again plummeted out of the cloud and the company is scurrying to fix the problem nearly an hour after it went titsup. The email service hit the buffers at around 10:15am GMT, and, at time of writing, it hasn't flickered back to life yet. All of which spells bad news for all those firms out there that …


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  1. Timothy

    Why google...

    ...Why do you keep tumbling down, more and more every month, i hope they sort it soon for their sake :(

  2. Nick

    Not all dead

    Whilst I can't access the gmail website, I can still access my email via imap (on my iPhone). I don't know about POP, but it looks like the service isn't completely dead.

  3. Scott K
    Thumb Up

    Thought the phone was a bit quiet this morning

    Using Gmail as my push style email on the phone, thought it was a bit quiet! thanks for the heads Up el reg

  4. Neil Hoskins

    webmail only?

    Seems to be webmail only. I can connect to my imap box.

  5. Charlie Stross

    Minor correction

    Gmail is in fact working <em>fine</em> -- if you use IMAP or POP to access it. It's just the webmail front end that's down.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Stop the meantime users can keep hitting F5

    They could; but they'd be advised to save wear and tear on their fingers and the F5 key, since our glorious benefactors choose not to post any updates on the status of GMail.

  7. Paul

    bally annoying

    Thank you, Reg, I was beginning to think it was me.

    Better stop relying on it, I guess.

  8. Simon Casey

    Tis fine?

    I've been using it fine all morning via IMAP on my iPhone? Sent an email at 8:50, 9:12, 9:36, 10:29 and 11:26.

    Just checked and still sending/receiving just fine thanks :)

  9. Tim Spence
    Thumb Up


    No doubt I'll be the millionth commenter here, reporting that it's still working via POP access, but I'm happy to report that Google Mail is still working via POP access.

  10. Anonymous Coward

    The problem is in the Web-Based Service

    Point you IMAP client to their server and Hey-Presto you can still get at your emails!

  11. Jon Pain

    I've got IMAP

    but no webmail as yet.

  12. John Seto

    You can still check mail thru' pop3

    looks like you can still see mail using pop3, certainly I am still getting alerts via the GTalk client, so looks like the front-end side of things have gone t*ts up

  13. Andy Hawes


    .....But running VERY VERY Slowly..

  14. Edward Miles

    <Insert witty title here>

    IMAP/SMTP is still working. Dunno about pop3. Just had to scramble to set up a command imap client on my server 'cos today would be the day I don't have access to my thunderbird. Grumble. Still, all good now!

  15. Greg Kerr


    This is affecting me as use Google Apps Mail for my business. Get yr shit together Google!

    Quick tip, IMAP is still working, mail is coming through to my phone.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Waahh! But Google can do no wrong!!

    This is funny.

  17. dervheid

    Still cream crackered!

    Just what kind of free service are the offering here?

    Isn't it enough that we let them pimp, sorry, of course I meant analyse, our usage data in return.

    I did wonder why my inbox was surprisingly empty at 7-45 this morning. I suspect they started having problems way before 10-15.

  18. Doug

    a freebee in the cloud ..

    I don't suppose we should complain about a freebee service. Some time back, most of us wouldn't have an email address without some college or business providing it. Currently we get a basic email service from our ISP, which can also go down on occasions. The only other solution is to host your own email server in some server farm. What would it cost to set up and service, assuming most people wouldn't be technically inclined to roll their own?

  19. John Dow


    Well, it's a free services and a damn good one at that price, so fair enough.

  20. Craig

    Isn't google services falling offline one of the harbingers of the apocolypse?

    Well...isn't it?

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Durr, wah?

    Ditch Exchange and Outlook (no matter how crappy they may be) for something that is little better than Hotmail?

    This, of course, ignores that fact that company email is even less secure and less private than it was before.

    What kinds of companies are we talking about? Proper ones or just mom and pop cottage industries?

  22. Martin Silver badge

    Offline for webmail, online for POP3

    As title really, when it first went down, couldn't access anything, but the secure pop3 server came back up fairly quickly. The webmail is still giving a 502 error which is... annoying, but you gets what you pays for I guess!

  23. Anonymous Coward

    Who you gonna call

    Apparently not Gmail engineers.... haven't had access for the better part of 2hrs now....

  24. Luke

    Still broken but...

    weirdly works fine on my phone.

  25. Bill


    down in the uk, usa, france, switzerland and ireland amongst others

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    IMAP access works.

    I just managed to check my email via IMAP (secure) using Evilution (Ubuntu 8.10)


  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wot... no credit?

    I guess I was only one of many to report this then. Just shows how many people rely on it. Still, even with the occasional outage, I'd still rather eat a tablespoon of ferret faeces than go back to hotmail.

  28. Rob Thorley

    Apple and iPod Sync

    Over the weekend I couldn't sync my iPod to Gmail, although I was accessing t'internet without issue. Hope I haven't f***ed things up?

  29. Anonymous Coward

    IMAP still working

    I can still access both my GMail accounts via IMAP (

    It's strange using an email client again after years of using GMail though.

  30. JohnP
    Thumb Down

    Sky users affected too!

    Not just Gmail users. All Sky broadband customers will be affected as Sky's e-mail system is part of G-Mail. As of 11.42 am UK time, it is still down.

  31. Scott Wichall

    I can't get mail either

    So someone has tripped over all the cables at google central again then....

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Long way round

    Looks like you can still get to gmail if you go via the googletalk app or log into google calendar/docs and jump across to your gmail account.

  33. ThisTimeNextYear
    Paris Hilton

    You get what you pay for...

    That's most annoying however since I've never paid google a penny (although I'm sure they've made a few quid out of me clicking on adverts) I can't really have the arse with their free service going down.

    Hohum... Erm Paris because she's allways happy to go down.

  34. Rogier

    IMAP access is working

    IMAP access does seem to be working fine though, at least for me.

  35. Chris

    Work-around - IMAP up

    Google's IMAP servers still seems to be working. If you don't want to configure an email client then you can log on via

  36. Richard Parkin

    Currently working by POP and IMAP

    The web mail is not working but it is currently working by POP and IMAP

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    It is _still_ in beta...

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Still more up time then Exchange

    Its been working OK, albeit slowly.

    Still, even with a bit of downtime, its vastly better then Exchange and Outlook. After all, the would have down time as well, even just thru admin error. 1-2 days a year down time quite frankly is acceptable in my opinion.

  39. si
    Jobs Halo

    iphone ok

    Actually, I can still use my gmail through my iphone, the browser version that seems to be down

  40. Doddy

    Only the web interface is down

    Looks like it's just the web interface that's down. I'm still getting mail ok via POP3 on, so it should be fine for anyone using GMail through a local mail app.

  41. Pete


    Google's mail outage, also is effecting sky's emails, which are handled by gmai l!!!

  42. Michael Fremlins

    Moaning minnies

    Did you pay for Google mail?

    Anyone who thinks they can do better should have a go!

  43. Anonymous Coward

    google goes offline

    now I understand why they promote their off line services...

  44. david miron

    Cartoon - Gmail Down Is It The End?

    Gmail Fail Cartoon

  45. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Is it free? I pay for mine. Dont forget there are several aspects to gmail.

    You have GAPE Standard and Premier then the bog standard Gmail offering.

    A lot of companies moving to Google instead of other hosted options. They are going to be the ones worried by these events.

    POP3 and IMAP work fine.

  46. Anonymous Coward

    Just a ploy by Google

    Obviously they have done it just to get more people using the Offline Gmail feature they launched last week...

  47. Peter Pringle

    Don't google 'gmail down'

    I decided to see what was up with Gmail by googling for 'gmail down'. The first result appears to be a google group with the name of my query. Clicking on the link brought up the group with a big porn banner on the top! Not exactly office safe...

  48. Anonymous John


    "We apologize for any inconvenience that this has caused."

    I do so hate that use of the word "any". All downtime is inconvenient.

  49. mc_nebula

    Up now

    Webmail interface is up now...

  50. Michael Hall
    Thumb Up

    Wouldnt go back to Exchange...

    I dont think a small mess like this would convince anybody who has been weened of exchange to go back to it. Google Apps dying once a year is a lot nicer than exchange dying because:

    The logs are full,

    The database is full and now needs to be defragged for 2 days,

    Exchange DoSed itself by duplicating messages in its own que,



    Yep I remember the days when I had fix these sorry ass problems. Now with the miracle of google apps some other poor sod has to fix them and nobody has to pay a penny!

  51. Chris Simmons

    Posted on Google Groups

    We're aware of a problem with Gmail affecting a small subset of users.

    The affected users are unable to access Gmail. We will provide an

    update by February 24, 2009 6:30 AM PST detailing when we expect to

    resolve the problem. Please note that this resolution time is an

    estimate and may change

    Posted by Gmail Guide Yellow at 10:46am

  52. John Robson Silver badge

    Productivity increase:)

    Without email to distract me I can do some work for once!

    Of course instead I'm posting here...

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Exchange for reliabilty ??

    There are reliable mail servers out there, but to suggest Exchange as the bullet proof option seems far fetched

  54. Paul Murphy

    Glad it's not just me then.

    So what's good about the cloud again?

    Useful when around, but don't make it mission-critical, unless you like this sort of thing I guess.

    Still getting '502 server error'.


  55. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What Outage?!

    Is that just business GMail accounts? My personal account has been open and running fine all day (Tue 24th)

  56. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Working again now

    People ditching Exchange for gmail? Really?

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    pop/imap working?

    imap seems to work fine, at 12:02. Webmail not accessible, 502.

    Switched everything over to gmail address on Friday after three years of testing it, DOH (Paris, cause I feel like a dope)

  58. Adam Shailes

    Cloud uptime not as good as Google blog it then..?

    "Looking just at the unplanned outages that catch IT staffs by surprise, these results suggest Gmail is twice as reliable as a Novell GroupWise solution, and four times more reliable than a Microsoft Exchange-based solution that companies must maintain themselves."

    Funny I still have access to my Novell GroupWise account today and so do the X number of clients we support on their own systems and less downtime then GMail in the last 12 months by the sound of it!

    Figures and stats are fun :)

  59. Bill Cumming
    Paris Hilton

    Web down Imap up??

    Some people have been getting intermittent service via Imap (like me!) and it's fine for others.

    Some have been getting the basic HTML site to work (i've not got ot to work!)

    Pain in the neck! was gonna clear out 3k worth of junk emails today!

    paris... 'cause when she goes down it's fun!

  60. Tascam Holiday
    Thumb Up

    No problems with IMAP

    Though the Gmail website isn't responding, I've got no problems accessing my Gmail account via IMAP. No bloody ads either!

  61. Anonymous Coward


    Hur Hur.

    Seriously though... I'm waiting on an e-mail from an actual real-life girl here! This is UNACCEPTABLE.

  62. Paul Saleh

    email up, web down

    I can't get gmail on my desktop, but I am getting it via my blackberry app, which suggests to me that the email system is working, but the web front end ain't.

  63. Matt

    That's the problem with clouds....

    they just kind of evaporate without rhyme nor reason :-)

  64. Harry Cooke

    Back up: 12:20

    Got back in,

    No problems accessing on the Jesus Phone throughout the outage though.

  65. Mike Tree
    Thumb Up

    Well, it is still in Beta

    Can't wait for the moaning minnies to start complaining.

    Works OK for me. Maybe they've fixed it.

  66. Ash

    Issue identified, resolution impossible

    Some prankster sent a link to a Google search to a friend, who then clicked it. It was at this point that GMail servers gound to a halt at the quantity of data being pushed at them by Google. Link in full below:



  67. Tony Bloke

    Back up now

    and still saying "BETA" in the title.

    You get what you pay for.

  68. Anonymous Coward

    Never went down

    in Malta - been using it all morning.

  69. Mike Gove

    It's back

    All seems back now

  70. Cunk

    Article tone

    It was kind of subtle but did anyone else get the impression that the author of the article is not a fan of Google or Gmail?

    We switched to Gmail for our domain about a half year ago after finally getting fed up with our web host's numerous problems. The web host themselves were aware they sucked at email and added a simple way to switch to Gmail within their control panel. Other than a few false positives arriving in the spam folder we've been very pleased with Gmail. We use POP3 rather than the web interface so maybe that has helped.

    Also, Exchange was never an option for us. For a company with < 10 people and no dedicated IT staff it would be suicide to rely on something so complicated. Plus the dynamic IP address makes things difficult.

  71. Gerrit Tijhof
    Paris Hilton

    We are entitled to complain

    But perhaps we should complain "nicely and graceful". For it's free, and quite outstanding. Hilton, because she isn't. (nice, graceful, free or outstanding that is)

  72. JASR
    Black Helicopters

    Change to interface...

    When it popped back into existence, I had Ads displayed for the 1st time in a few years (use CustomizeGoogle Add-On in Firefox), which was a bit strange - they have now gone again \0/.

    And then I noticed that new mail, is not bolding the sender's name anymore - the subject still is - (or it looks like a different font at lest).. so maybe they updated the web code and it all went a bit ... Pete Tong?

  73. Pete

    Re: GFAIL

    I hope that your real-life girl has contacted you now that Gmail is once again tits down. However I should warn you that I met one once - more hassle than they're worth lad.

  74. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    GFail isn't just free

    My organisation ditched a Groupwise based solution for GFail, and they pay real money for it.

    At least when your own server goes down you can normally kick it into life...

  75. James O'Shea Silver badge

    err... what's the problem?

    Buyz'n'grrlz, just a few things to note:

    1 it's _free_. If those who complain were actually paying for the service, they'd have some grounds for that complaint, but it's _free_. If you don't like the service, find another one and use that.

    2 the IMAP and POP services worked without a problem, or at least without a problem that was detected here. Those who use a real email client didn't even notice that there was a problem until they saw that some wusses were complaining about a free service.

    3 Goggle Central is in Deepest Kalifornia. If it broke at 10:15 GMT, that's 02:15 their time. Odds are excellent that the first team is asleep, and it'd take a while for whichever poor saps are on the night watch to either fix the problem or realise that they can't fix it and call in the first team.

    4 When I first read the article about half an hour ago, 07:30 EST, or 12:30 GMT, the problem had been fixed, or at least Google's webmail service was working around here. This means that the outage was around 2 hours 15 minutes at most. Panicking and bitching and moaning about a two hour outage from a _free_ service strikes me as being... juvenile.

  76. Dave Bell

    So what?

    I suspect the problems started earlier. but things are working now.

    Email systems go down all the time. What's the big deal? It takes time to fix things. This one, it seems, was Google's job to fix, rather than a broken Internet. I see a prompt response, maybe some reason to improve communication,and nothing extraordinary.

  77. Oz

    Sky mail still down

    It's 1pm and I'm still getting "We're sorry... but your query looks similar to automated requests from a computer virus or spyware application. To protect our users, we can't process your request right now. ". Clearing cookies, as suggested by them, makes no difference.

  78. Misty
    Thumb Down

    Still broken.

    It came up very briefly and now it's gone again. I hope they fix it soon. At this rate I'm going to have to do some w*rk.

  79. P. Lee

    "Mission critical use of a free service," you say?

    Didn't mirror to a local imap server you say?

    Idiot I say

    Actually I suspect if you look at down-time per user and compare it to most in-house solutions its probably doing pretty well.

    Has no-one noticed that if you install the imap package on linux or solaris it works for all local users without any further configuration at all? I'm not sure about the rest but suse will pull email off a remote imap/pop3 server for local users with a couple of tick-boxes and the account details, so no inbound smtp to worry about.

    Even if you do rely on gmail and must have the web interface, is two hours without email really a huge problem? I certainly wouldn't be looking at Exchange as an alternative.

  80. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Big deal

    This wouldn't be such big news had it happened to other web mail services.

    Google have taught (and are still teaching) how web mail is done - Yahoo anyone? what a massive pile of cack. I can certainly pass them a glitch like this once every 5 years.

  81. James

    @Adam Shailes

    You have a Novell Groupwise account? You poor sod. Groupwise is possibly the only thing I've found that makes Exchange/Outlook seem like quality products...

  82. IPB
    Paris Hilton

    he he

    I'm laughing because as soon as my Gmail came back I opted to install the offline feature. While backing up it offered me a link: Go into Flaky Connection Mode

    Damn right.

    Paris, because she goes down for hours at a time

  83. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

    A lot of fuss 'bout nowt

    Airplanes don't fall out the sky, Batteries don't burst into flames, Cars don't crash, Digital TV doesn't go dead, Electricity never stops flowing, File servers never forget, Gas never leaks, Houses never subside, Ink never stains, Jump-jets always jump, never flip, Kippers never taste off, Lemmings never fall over cliffs, Mancunians are always friendly, NASA satellites work first time, Optimus Prime will not fail to appear when needed, Portaloos are never full to the brim, Questions are always answered, Realestate is never a bad investment, Shit never happens, Trains stay on their rails Users are never wrong, VP's never bugger off with the company's loot, Windows just works, X-terminals don't need complex configuration, Youths never fail to respect their elders, and Zeppelins never ignite.

    That's why people expect Google to be perfect.

  84. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I guess............

    I guess they finally dragged some fécker out of bed to flick that switch back on

  85. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not just GMail

    Hotmail was down as well...

  86. N

    99.9% availability?

    Thats around 8 hours 45 minutes a year downtime.

    I bet theres little chance of refunds if this is exceeded

  87. Xander
    Thumb Down


    Either that's a witty acronym or you are a world class moron.

  88. Anonymous Coward

    its back


  89. Dan Mullen
    Thumb Up


    Webmail interface seems to be working again.

  90. Lionel Baden


    get your ass in gear !!!

    We all paid good clicks for this service !!!!!


  91. Mike

    gmail works on windows mobile

    Oh good. It works now. I can now tell the people at Agilex, Inc. how terrible they are.

  92. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    'tis all

  93. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Michael Hall


    1 - the logs are full - never heard of backing up the databases to flush the logs?

    2 - the database is full - are you kidding me? You didn't spot this in advance / increase it's size etc etc. 2003 SP2 came out a long time ago / problem doesn't exist in 2007 / never existed in Enterprise

    3 - Exchange DOSed itself - given points 1 and 2 I'm not sure you are qualified to make this statement which is actually pure fantasy - it just started duplicating messages itself did it?

    It's people like you who bang on about Exchange being crap without actually having the first clue about it, and probably cause more problems than the software ever did because you can't look after it.

  94. Anonymous Coward


    Its been working fine on my G1 all day through both my phone tied account and my other ones which I access using the generic Android Email program, and, as many others have reported the POP/IMAP/SMTP part seems to have been working fine so it really only seems to have been the web front end that has been broken.

  95. Anonymous Coward


    > Google's IMAP servers still seems to be working. If you don't want to configure an email client then you can log on via http://www.[FRICKEN' BALEETED]



    *takes calm pill*

    Look, even if those people are genuine, the whole idea of typing your friggin' ISP PASSWORD into some random stranger's third-party site on the web is criminally irresponsible and should not be done by anyone ever. It's f'ing stupid when Facebook suggests you give it your webmail account password so it can look up your contacts for you, but it's even more f'ing stupid to put yourself to all that risk JUST IN ORDER TO USE A WEBMAIL INTERFACE TO ACCESS SOMETHING THAT'S ALREADY WEBMAIL IN THE FIRST PLACE. FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUU >rage<

    <goes off to bang head against wall>

    WHEN *bang* WILL *bang* PEOPLE *bang* GET *bang* SECURITY?

    *bang* *bang* *bang*


    Exchange still has over 65% market share

    ...and if you know how to administer correctly it works a treat so quit your shoddy comparisons... cloud for buiness critical applications is FAIL as is marking exchange down as a bad product.

    Gtards! *sigh*

  97. g e


    Whaddya want for nothing? LOL

    I use googlemail for domains and while I can't access webmail right now it's the only time I've ever had a problem with 'em and they do better than plenty of paid-for solutions to boot!

  98. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Actually the whole thing was down for a short while....

    I have 3 gmail accounts, one accessed only by the web Interface, one thats on POP 3 and one thats on IMAP, when I realised there was an issue I checked them all and found that none were working.

    Imap came back first, followed by POP 3 then the web page.

    So at one point it was all down.

    (And yes I did check connectivity was ok)

  99. Lottie

    That's it!!

    I want my money back.....

  100. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    @Michael Hall

    "I dont think a small mess like this would convince anybody who has been weened of exchange to go back to it"

    Yeah... right...

    And if you're the IT Director responsible for moving to the "cloud" and then this happens how do you think you would feel when the CEO comes to you and says "what are you doing about fixing the company-wide email outage" and you have to reply "err... there's nothing we can do about it."

    Do me a favour.

    (Paris because she knows what to do when things go down)

  101. David Simpson

    Who did it.......

    Who typed google into google search and broke the internet ?

    Gmail down for fours hours and now back up, not even enough time to start looting !

  102. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Its down again

    I'm getting errors on my imap account around 17:00 so it looks like it isnt sorted completely yet.

  103. Stephen Macken


    GFail is still out for me... so much for update 2!

  104. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    No on all levels

    POP not working, IMAP maybe (as reported), webmail not working.

    Sack of s*** inbred google services, you can never rely on others.

    Welcome to the cloud.

  105. Shannon Jacobs

    Spammers again

    I'd wager it was the spammers again--but Google can't be bothered to fight them seriously, eh?

    (Isn't spam the #1 problem with email?)

  106. David Kairns

    Another Reason...

    ...why the cloud is a bunch of unreliable vapor.

  107. Anonymous Coward

    Someone must have hit the.....

    G Spot.

  108. Will Harris

    and again?

    Can't log into gmail again - just getting "still working" and being served offline results only.

    what is happening to my favourite email service!

  109. Will Harris

    for the record

    back working again for me.

    I've been getting the "still working" message a lot more recently (but not for 30 mins like i just experienced). A different issue from the full outage, but still increasingly annoying.

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