Google has had a tough few months when it comes to outages and today’s Postini outage is just adding to their woes.
Many users of Postini (a wholly owned subsidiary of Google) have been experiencing severe delays of mail, with most reporting delays of around 4 hours.
Postini is not taking calls, as their call centre operates during normal USA office hours only, and to access their support site, you need to request permission which takes up to two business days to process.
The only other option is a call to Google, which has a recording saying they are aware of the problem, and do not know when it will be resolved.
I can see that this is going to become an argument as the “do no evil” company is refusing to admit this is an outage. Google spokesman Jay Nancarrow has been quoted as saying
We’re aware of an issue that’s causing a delay in mail delivery for some Postini customers in the U.S., and are working to fix it as quickly as possible. Outbound mail is fully functional, but inbound mail has been flowing at a reduced rate for affected users. We know how important mail is to our users, so we take issues like this very seriously, and apologize for the inconvenience.
Given the size and veracity of complaints in forums all over the world, it seems like Google is trying very hard to play down a major fault. It is not specific to the USA, nor is it just a reduced rate. Mail is taking upwards of 12 hours to arrive (for us at least) and it seems that it is also affecting outbound – contrary to the statement above.
Mail and other services are offline for a majority of users
It would seem that Google’s week is off to a bad start. After some intermittent faults appearing late Tuesday (AEST) it seems that the hosted apps and gmail service is completely offline for all users.
Google has said that it expects to have the services restored early Wednesday – but we are now already at that time. And many business and schools that have switched to Google Hosted Applications will be turning up and trying to log in, only to find themselves unable to access their email.
Google offers it’s “premiere” customers a 99.9% uptime reliability guarantee (SLA). That means that this month, they are already in breach – given that promise can mean only an outage of about 40 minutes every month.
Google Hosted Applications and Mail is Offline
Annoyingly it seems that the Google Hosted Services have suffered yet another major outage. In speaking with the support center they have only just become aware of it, and are currently investigating.
What I find most annoying about this is that we pay for the premium service, but somehow when ever there is an outage of all the unpaid customers, the premium customers also experience that same outage.
Google are still yet to update their status page about the issue, and it seems like they have been taken a little by surprise.
[UPDATE 20:21 8 May] It seems that this has rapidly spread to all of gmail. Not just hosted applications, gmail itself seems to be completely offline.
[UPDATE 20:28 8 May] And we are all back and happy again. Still no information on the Google Status page as to the cause of the outage though.