Problems with GMail?

by M. David Peterson

Am I the only one on the planet who has been having "issues" with GMail ever since their GoogleTalk system upgrade? I don't think I have been able to send out any messages from GMail in over three days, though I've been away for much of the last three days, so its tough to know if this has been a continuous, or spotty outage. Archiving messages is broken, and while there are a couple of new messages, its no where near the normal level I would expect.

As I alluded, I've been off the grid for much of the last part of this week, so if this is a more wide spread issue, I can only assume folks have been blogging about it. I guess its time to pay Technorati a visit :D

Update: Hmmm.... If its a system wide issue, there doesn't seem to be too many people blogging about it, though at this stage of the "Symantic Web" game, its difficult to pin-point the content you are most interested in, as the combination of keywords and full-text search, while fine for non-mainstream subject matter like "XSLT", doesn't fly too well when you are searching for "gmail" or "gmail problems" or "problems with gmail", and while coming up with the exact phrasing that folks are using when speaking about potential gmail problems would obviously help, if we humans are the ones with the problem (in regards to finding what it is we are looking for from a fine-tuned contextual standpoint), we might as well forget about this whole "Semantic Web" business and go back to using newspapers, television, and our local public library to locate information of interest.

As an interesting side-note,


James Hales
2006-08-19 22:25:28
Gmail works fine for me.
M. David Peterson
2006-08-19 22:32:59
Hey James,

Things started working for me again about five hours ago. It seems that maybe this was more of the standard "growing pains" that tend to be pretty natural with the release of new features?

Either way, thanks for taking the time to comment!

2006-08-21 08:24:36
I've had no problems with Gmail. It was fine last night when I sent and received e-mails.
2006-08-22 06:32:21
Am still having problems with Gmail. Last 12 hours. Still "loading". What seems to be the problem? Anyone know of a solution?
2006-08-23 13:23:26
Yep David, I found your site by searching. I don't know where the e-mails go, but they're not in my inbox or any label.
M. David Peterson
2006-08-23 13:37:12
@ Steve, Yeah, everything seems to be back in order.

@PDia, With as many Google Data Centers as there are, it wouldn't surprise for this to be a somewhat randome series of outages as each data center upgrades to the latest features.

@Tobias, Even though things seem to be back in order, I will admit that the volume of email is still pretty low in comparison to the norm.

Hmmm... Sounds like a job for Blip Messaging! ;) :D

Thanks to each of you for taking the time to comment!

2006-08-25 17:18:36
gmail is stuffed again - August 26 2006. can't contact server for a substantial period. Second time in a couple of days.
email has to be more reliable than this or I am going elsewhere.
How do you complain to those guys?
M. David Peterson
2006-08-27 10:09:41

>> How do you complain to those guys?

That's the million dollar question! ;)

What's amazing to me is that a good majority of companies on the planet (including and especially MSFT) have adopted corporate blogging as at least one way to get their message out, and your message in. Furthermore, while Microsoft might be a closed-source company (though that's beginning to (slowly) change), if you need product support, in most cases its free, and in *ALL* cases it's just a phone call away.

Why then is Google, who has neither of these, held in such high regard by us geeks?

Or are they?

M. David Peterson
2006-08-27 14:07:31
>> Why then is Google, who has neither of these, held in such high regard by us geeks?

Answering my own question: I guess probably because, generally speaking, we have a tendency to need the least amount of tech support.

Which then brings us to the question: Can Google truly compete at the consumer level without the need to integrate a 24/7 phone support center?

2006-08-31 00:52:14
i've just started having problems with gmail over the last 3 days, i can't access the gmail webpage let alone my inbox and there's no error message, it just says it "cannot find server". i've had no problems before and it's only a recent thing but it's very frustrating.

btw i found this by googling "problems with gmail"

2006-08-31 06:39:17
I've had problems for weeks now with my gmail - I cant send attached files which is SO annoying. I also have a gmail that i use for work, and i can't send attacthed files from that either, so I guess I'm not the only one with this problem.
M. David Peterson
2006-08-31 12:47:07

>> btw i found this by googling "problems with gmail" <<

I LOVE IT!!! Actually, while its obviously not something Google would want to be responsible for (in short: providing access to folks complaining about their service) it does showcase the fact that at very least they're not "tainting" the results of a search. If nothing else, at least thats something.

That said, I have continued to have problems with sending email from GMail ever since I first posted this entry. Nothing so far today, but yesterday there was a 2 hour (or so) period and the day before an 8 hour (or so) period of downtime.


>> I cant send attached files which is SO annoying.

Isn't it! I have had several key emails this week that I needed to send *RIGHT AWAY* and couldn't because of this nifty little error box,

>> I also have a gmail that i use for work, and i can't send attacthed files from that either, so I guess I'm not the only one with this problem.

No, this is definitely not a one off event. I like GMail, and I like Google. However, it is my own belief that the problem isn't so much with GMail, but with email in general. We don't see it as much when we use our own mail servers (or our company, corporations, organization, etc...) because the load is more spread out. But when you focus the sending, sorting, and delivery of email, most of which is SPAM, on one domain, even when that domain is backed by a gigantic grid computing system, its going to present problems just like the ones we are seeing now.

This isn't as much of a problem when web-based mail means a simple HTML interface. But the addition of AJAX-enabled web mail (of which Microsoft pioneered but not quite to the same level of GMail) in which adds hundreds of additional GET requests to the mix, pushes the strain on network bandwidth to a whole new level.

The result: What we are all witnessing as we speak.

The solution: In progress ;) ( )

2006-09-01 04:43:22
I've had so many problems with trying to send gmail messages with attachment that I'm reluctantly going back to hotmail.
M. David Peterson
2006-09-03 12:27:34

I feel your pain! ;)

2006-09-10 21:51:39
here's one: almost never able to get any of the links inside gmail to work online when using safari

for instance, can't remove a label (0 conversations) by clicking remove. it does nothing. just sits there, doesn't delete, can't rename it either. what's that all about?

did they finally recently add a feature to search the spam box? why don't they show more than 20 stupid spam messages at a time on one page?

why aren't the columns sortable by sender, by date, by subject like normal logical email?

not to mention the probs with attachments, server time outs, password hinkyness as others have noted.

2006-09-18 01:48:40
I have not been able to access my mail at all for well over a week. Is Gmail dead?
2006-10-30 12:48:15
I have not been able to access gmail for about 48 hours just keeps loading forever.....
2006-11-01 19:12:18
I've had this problem forever. No sending using Attachments!
But using the same machine -- even Yahoo doesn't send also. Has anybody tried this?

I resorted to making a new HOTMAIL (gasp!) account and that worked.
I think popularity = slower servers. I opened and sent using hotmail on the same PC by the way.

Hey google, please fix this!

M. David Peterson
2006-11-02 07:48:34
@.:buzzzed:., Kim, yenta, and Jomar,

Thanks for each of your contributions! It seems obvious to me that this is something that will continue to be an ongoing problem until such time as there are a better base of tools readily available to built more robust web applications.

I wish I could remember who made this recent statement (if anyone happens to have read the same post and remembers who it was, if you wouldn't mind letting me know I would *MUCH* appreciate it) but the gist of it was "... for the most part, to this day, the web continue to run on technologies that were developed during a 6 month time frame during 1995."

While this is not 100% accurate, its pretty close, and certainly close enough to suggest that in and of itself, this is a pretty significant point to take into consideration.

We're in the middle of an upgrade process, and in fact are nearing the end of the upgrade process in which next generation technologies such as XAML, XForms, SVG, and other similar forms, graphic rendering, and application wiring markup languages will begin to take over in regards to providing a more robust framework of application stability and capability. The result will mean better client-side application performance that make better use of system resources from both the client-side processor and network bandwidth perspective.

In the mean time, however -- This is pretty much going to be the norm until such time as we stop trying to utilize 11-years-old -- mostly static, and if not static, then non-compiled -- technologies to implement dynamic functionality. An application is only as robust as its weakest link -- in this case there are too many weak links, and therefore too many points of potential failure and/or system slowdown to allow for the current base of browser-based applications to have any hope of providing a better overall experience than what they do at the present time.

reliable web hosting
2006-12-08 00:59:59
I'm unable to access gmail in the latest firefox, but I can access it fine in the latest IE browser, anyone know what's going on?
2007-01-14 23:43:39
i am trying to access the gmail email account but login page is not coming. This problem i am facong only with above mentioned URL. please help me .........
2007-01-30 15:17:38
I get these symbols when I try to log in:

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2007-02-06 14:14:41
Gmail does eem to cause an usual number of problems. I think that is due to their talk program that seems to want to be live at all times. For explorer it takes a long time to load and then causes a freezing and crash problem. To bad because it would be nice to use gmail but not worth the risk
2007-03-07 12:01:54
I have also been having problems with gmail. I found that if you use a proxy of some kind-torpark(although its too slow for my liking)- you can access your gmail. Hope this helps!
2007-03-11 12:18:16
Sup peeps? I've also had problems with gmail. I found out by trial and error that it usually works if you use some sort of proxy server. Goodluck!
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2007-03-28 19:11:36
My gmail is not working it has worked sporadically over the past few days. I can't contact google because I have to fill in all these complicated forms and I don't have the time. I figure the more comments and posts about the subject, the faster they will take care of the problem. I have five projects up in the air at the same time all of which are mediated through my gmail account. This disruption of service is severly disrupting my life.
2007-04-29 03:34:51
Have not been able to send attachments via Gmail, Hotmail or any other email account from my home laptop. The files are well under the 10MB limit and I don't have a web accelerator. How can I fix this???
2007-05-25 11:39:10
My gmail has been loading for the last week ... cant access my mails .. woz up??? help!!!
2007-06-16 02:39:37
you can uses gmail via POP/SMTP setup in Outlook, etc
2007-07-16 12:07:20
I have been having trouble sending and receiving gmail using POP forwarding through my Mac. When did the upgrade occur? I am giving up and going to use my .MAC acct instead.
2007-07-16 12:07:34
I have been having trouble sending and receiving gmail using POP forwarding through my Mac. When did the upgrade occur? I am giving up and going to use my .MAC acct instead.
James in Canada
2007-08-04 23:42:15
I am so frustrated with gmail. I can not log in, I have tried every combination. It used to take me right into my gmail, now I need the user name and password, both of which don't work. I have tried to reset, but it takes me to a new sign up screen, and when I type in my user name, it tells me it is taken,,, of course it is taken, it is me. Unless someone else has taken over my account and changed my password. There is nothing of a big deal in my gmail, except some letters and contacts I needed to access. Trying to find an email address to address my problem is very frusterating, because there isn't one,and nothing regarding my specific issue, everything is a big loop, and I give up. It has been five days now, without access. I think I will give up on gmail, it has not served me well.
2007-08-19 18:51:00
i've had terrible problems all day with gmail. i'm not able to receive or send email.
2007-08-21 22:49:49
no, you're not the only one. i'm having issues with gmail too >.<
Ryan M
2007-08-24 23:37:04
pretty much all the time I have trouble with gmail. I love its features, hate its predictability
2007-08-29 05:21:35
Hello. For the past few days I have been having a really disturbing problem with gmail (and only gmail). Any click in any email on any link is opening twice the link...

I tried uninstalling the google toolbar. Did not help.

FF still has some work to do to correctly deal with arabic language display, and thus, arabic people find themselves almost obliged to use IE.

am on winXP IE7.

Any help???

2007-11-12 17:37:44
I thought it was only me having problems. Trying to bcc addresses has become a nightmare, I get the first letter of the original email address to the one that follows. I try to add more and it deletes the first two. Does that make sense? I go thru and delete the extra letter and try to add another and it removes the initial address. My contacts are not as user friendly either. I appear to have lost access to several I had. Help..
Richard Miller
2007-11-13 06:01:52
I am going crazy with the google mess. First I could not format an email with a link which is horrible with web page links. Then the notifier would not bring up an email page. Now I cannot even load the notifier application. I have much tied up in google, businesswise.
What makes me the most angry is their hiding from contact. There is no way to report anything and get human contact. These bums beg for government intervention, then government tax, and control. Insane! I need a new email system, these people are insensitive and aloof. STOP WITH THE ENHANCEMENTS, JUST GIVE US DEPENDABLE EMAIL.
2007-11-15 08:05:37
I'M NOT THE ONLY ONE!!! All the mail I send is sent to my trash and lots of my emails incoming are sent there as well. I have filters in place but they are only for spam with words like...well, you know. HELP!!!
2007-12-28 18:35:58
I can not sign into anything
2008-01-14 15:05:38
I cannot get into my email page all I get is a blank screen
I cannot get or recive anything please help
2008-03-04 02:33:06
What is the problem with gmail I seem to be having problems from past 20 days in opening gmail account. Its pretty disturbing..
2008-03-19 03:38:37
i've been having -- a lot -- of trouble with my account for three weeks now. it gets stuck so that i can't view old emails, addresses don't automatically fill when i type in the contact name, and it takes forever to search. when will it end?
2008-03-25 09:49:26
this thread is over 2 years old, which is kinda reassuring but then kinda not. Im having similar problems others have decribed, gmail gets locked on the loading phase. but, the wierd thing for me is that its only happening on my MacBook. Not on my work PC. im also getting some other wierd stuff happening on that mac (only a year old...and i have reinstalled the OS X) aswell. if anyone has interest or comments, feel free to write.
Larry Johnson
2008-06-17 07:01:53
GMail Problems. (NOTE: my email address is no longer
The other day, I received hundreds of non-deliverable email notices. Further investigation uncovered over 800 names added to my contact list. All of these had hotmail extentions and progressed systematically through all beginning with the letter 'c'. A junk mail letter was then sent out to all of these addresses along with everybody else I had in my contact list. Then to frustrate me even further, I could only delete 20 names a time. I could not find anywhere to email somebody at Google about this problem. I have since terminated my account with them. Hope this can help someone else.
2008-07-08 04:51:44
hi can anyone tell me what is the problem with gmail account??
I have been trying to open from last three days.It shows only "redirecting" for long time and the account doesnt open.
somebody plz help