Aug 11, 2008
Gmail and Google Apps went down. How many are left stranded?
It started just after 2:00pm PST on August 11, 2008. I was on the phone with a friend/client and planned to follow-up with information via email. Oh, “Temporary Error” – hmmm… turns out it was not that temporary.
What does one do when stranded by Gmail and Google Apps?
Here was my trouble-shooting and decision-making process:
- Test access to Google Apps and Gmail accounts using various browsers.
- Check my connectivity. (All other sites work well; move to next step.)
- Check Twitter to see if any of my friends were also down to ensure this was not an isolated incident.
- Call client who heavily relies on Google Apps for their email and inform their office so they don’t panic.
- Use Yahoo! mail for urgent alternative electronic communication.
- Check Twitter stream of conversations and be amazed at how many people are stranded.
- Decide that other tasks can be done. (Be thankful I track tasks with a Franklin Planner – old fashioned pencil & paper.)
- Pick up phone and call friend who was on list to call today. (Good thing her phone number was in my cell. My contact list is in Google Apps.)
- Water the plants and feed the baby doves in our back yard.
- Check Twitter stream again. (Oh, boy!)
- Write blog post.
- Finish non-email-related tasks. (Unfortunately, many of us rely on Google Apps for our files, calendars, etc.)
- Determine other alternatives to Google Apps & Gmail dependence for future. Maybe it’s time to look at Zoho. Lucky number 13?
The Twitter stream was amazing. The following image shows a search for “gmail” on search.twitter.com. In a little over an hour, over 7,000 additional conversations were tracked for people discussing their email woes.
Thanks to Twitter, my friends told me Gmail was back up! Just under 2 hours later, it’s been a good chance to think about decision-making process and productivity.
What does one do when Google Apps and Gmail go down in the middle of the work day?
- Be thankful you didn’t pay for Google Apps Premium Edition!
- Be thankful Twitter’s “Fail Whale” didn’t appear during Gmail’s outage.
- Do something non-electronic. (Call a friend!)
- Remember that all challenges are opportunities to re-evaluate.
ADDED 08.16.08: Post on LifeHacker with tips to back up your Google Apps data.