Gmail Service Outage Disrupts Users

By Lawrence Walsh  |  Print this article Print


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Individual and paid businesses of Gmail, including Google corporate users, were affected by the latest outage of the online messaging and collaboration suite. The service disruption comes as Google presses to expand the ranks of its Google Apps resellers.

Google sent an alert out through various social networking and conventional communications channel this morning that its e-mail service, Gmail, was unavailable to a "small subset of users" this morning and that it was working to correct the problem.

Since the alert went out, Twitter and other social media channels have been buzzing about the outage. There’s no way of telling how many users are affected, but several published reports indicate that it’s also affecting internal Google corporate users. Google said users that map their Gmail accounts to Outlook or Thunderbird are unaffected.

Nominal service was restored by midday, but sporadic outages and performance issues persist, Google said on its blogs.

This is the second outage this week for Gmail users, which includes scores of businesses and universities serviced directly by Google and channel partners. The serial incidents are particularly embarrassing for Google given its promise to provide 99.9 percent accessibility and reliability for paid-users of its Google Apps.

Google Apps is rapidly becoming a favorite cloud-based package of solution providers and value-added resellers. The lower cost and flexibility of Google Apps is giving solution providers an alternative to Microsoft Office to present to their customers.

"We’re seeing enterprise clients with major compliance issues looking to move whole hog to Google Apps because it cuts costs so much and it’s so cheap to maintain," Ed Laczynski,  founder and CTO of New Jersey-based LTech, told Channel Insider in a recent interview. "It can be a tenth of the spend, and it’s being taken seriously now."

Google sees the channel as a route to rapidly expanding its Google Apps customer base. The Web services company recently signed a development agreement with MSP Partners to promote Google Apps, which includes a Web-based word processor, e-mail and collaboration tools, to managed service providers. Google is also looking to expand the number of partners in its reseller ranks. Google has more than 400 resellers in its Google Apps channel program.

"We really spent the first six months handling inbound interest in our program, getting early partners up and running, and making sure we had our feet under us and properly supporting everyone," Jeff Ragusa, channel manager for Google Apps, told Channel Insider. "Now we are getting feedback and assessing what has worked and what hasn’t with the program."

Lawrence Walsh Lawrence Walsh is editor of Baseline magazine, overseeing print and online editorial content and the strategic direction of the publication. He is also a regular columnist for Ziff Davis Enterprise's Channel Insider. Mr. Walsh is well versed in IT technology and issues, and he is an expert in IT security technologies and policies, managed services, business intelligence software and IT reseller channels. An award-winning journalist, Mr. Walsh has served as editor of CMP Technology's VARBusiness and GovernmentVAR magazines, and TechTarget's Information Security magazine. He has written hundreds of articles, analyses and commentaries on the development of reseller businesses, the IT marketplace and managed services, as well as information security policy, strategy and technology. Prior to his magazine career, Mr. Walsh was a newspaper editor and reporter, having held editorial positions at the Boston Globe, MetroWest Daily News, Brockton Enterprise and Community Newspaper Company.

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