In a post over on the Gmail blog, Google is trying to reassure users affected by yesterday’s Gmail debacle. We don’t know just how many but Google says 0.02% of its Gmail user-base had their accounts wiped clean of any emails and in some cases contacts.
According to the search giant it was a software bug introduced to their storage software that caused mass-deletion of files. Although Google has several backups across multiple storage locations, they also have tape backups of Gmail data. In their blog post they actually hint that in some cases they are having to revert to the tape backups causing an inevitable slowdown.
Since the tapes are offline, they’re protected from such software bugs. But restoring data from them also takes longer than transferring your requests to another data center, which is why it’s taken us hours to get the email back instead of milliseconds.
Google assures users they will have their accounts back soon, but it mght take longer than previously expected. We don’t have a definitive time-frame as you might expect, but if you’re one of the unfortunate people affected you can find the latest updates from this web page.
According to the BBC, thousands of Gmail users are waking up today to find their accounts disabled, completely wiped clean of emails and in some cases their contacts are missing.
Although some users have reported their accounts fully restored many are left stranded. Google says its engineers are busy working on the problem and have already helped out many of the affected users of their popular email service.
Gmail engineer Mike CH has said the disabling of certain accounts is just a temporary maintenance measure:
Over night we temporarily disabled access to some Gmail accounts due to a service disruption. The disables are in place to stop the account from changing whilst we make the necessary repairs.
Access to your accounts will be restored shortly. Whilst an account is disabled:
• You will be unable to sign in to any Google service.
• Mail sent to the account will bounce.
• Hosted content you own like blogs, sites, shared items in Google Reader and so on will be unavailable.
The message you see on sign-in may refer to you to Google terms of service, but this is a generic and incorrect message. You have not violated the terms of service and we’ll restore your account access as soon as we can.
There is no update on the official Gmail blog, but you can get the latest info on the disruption from this web page.
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