Gmail users turned to Twitter on Monday to vent their anger after Gmail experienced long delays and unavailability in sending and receiving emails.
Google announced on Tuesday that the cause was a "rare" network failure that had caused the long email delays experienced earlier this week by many Gmail users. Google apologised to users for the unexpected delays and said the issues were caused by two network failures occurring at once.
"The message delivery delays were triggered by a dual network failure," Google said on its official blog. "This is a very rare event in which two separate, redundant network paths both stop working at the same time."
The network failures weren't as consequence of the other, but the combination caused Gmail messages to start piling up. Google said initially that over 50% of users were affected, though later updated saying 'most messages were unaffected' and that 71% of messages had no delays, whilst the remaining 29% experienced an average delay of 2.6 seconds.
However, 1.5% of messages were delayed for more than two hours. "Users who attempted to download large attachments on affected messages encountered errors," Google added.
"Throughout the event, Gmail remained otherwise available - users could log in, read messages which had been delivered, send mail, and access other features."
"We also plan to make changes to make Gmail message delivery more resilient to a network capacity shortfall in the unlikely event that one occurs in the future," Google said. "Finally, we’re updating our internal practices so that we can more quickly and effectively respond to network issues. We'll be working on all of these improvements and more over the next few weeks."
Although the issues have been resolved, Google said users may still be experiencing very minor delays whilst their networks slowly process though the queue and clear out the emails waiting for delivery.
Were you affected? I personally use Gmail all the time, I had slight delays with some emails but overall I can't fault an excellent free service provided by Google. You can get in touch with us by mentioning #ALJTMedia on Twitter, leaving a comment on our Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn page, or writing a comment below.
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