From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
Google's gmail doesn't work

August 3, 2004 12:15 PM

Someone has to say it: Gmail simply doesn't work. A couple months ago, I jumped headlong into gmail, redirecting all my email there. Now for the past few weeks, I can rarely access my email during the day. I've had to stop redirecting my email to gmail and revert back to Oulook.

The service that was supposed to make all my email easily accessible, has now made several months of my email completely inaccessible. I can't look up important email I've archived -- I can only wait until late at night in the hopes that it works for a little while.

Other people I've invited to join gmail haven't had the same problems, but they also haven't been using it as long as I have. Is it a ticking time bomb? Does gmail work alright as long as you don't get a lot of mail?

Meanwhile, Google doesn't seem to be updating their link relationship data in their search engine as often as they used to. I've got two new sites, and, neither of which have had their pagerank calculated yet. And they've been public for well over a month. Oh and remember that search dinosaur Yahoo? Their link relationship calculations are working just fine, and they've even got RSS feeds right on the search page.

All of you who are frothing at the mouth to get GOOG IPO shares, be wary. I know what it's like to be in a just-recently-IPO'ed tech company, and the evidence is mounting that Google will be just as distracted as Lycos was... possibly even more so.

A message to Google: I'm probably one of your biggest fans, but fuck with my email...

More from the archive in Business, Search, Tech.

Google's gmail doesn't work (08.03.2004)

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Read the 44 comments.

Dennis Doughty:

That's weird. I'm forwarding all of my mail into Gmail and it's working fine. I've only reached about 10% of my quota, though.

What I do see is that it handles some things elegantly, such as conversations, sorting, and the like. It handles other things abyssmally, such as the ability to see the most recent item in a conversation first or the ability to rename a label or redefine a filter properly.

Tue Aug 3 2004 12:49 PM

Jim Gilliam:

I'm only using 17% of my quota. It's like some portion of my data is in google-never-never-land and it can only be reached after hours. But that small portion prevents access to everything.

And because this isn't widespread, it kinda leaves me SOL as to getting it fixed. I guess I'll just have to email the friends I have over there and beg them to make something happen.

Tue Aug 3 2004 1:02 PM


mine works fine. i guess that is why it's still in beta.

Tue Aug 3 2004 1:35 PM

Andrew Auernheimer:

I'm using 34% of my quota. I frequently search my archives to pull up data from mailing lists. I've only had a single problem and it was quickly responded to when I sent a support inquiry.

Gmail is in beta, and the whole point of it being usable by the public is for people to stress-test it. If you're having problems, you need to report them so they can be fixed. It's likely more widespread than is currently known, other people are likely having the problem and have either failed to notice it or haven't reported it yet... it'll probably get fixed in a reasonable timeframe.

Remember, you're using stuff that's in beta here.

Tue Aug 3 2004 1:41 PM

Jim Gilliam:

And that's the problem -- it's in beta. And probably will be for quite awhile. Which means there ain't much I can do about my email not working. I can't risk it, so I can't use it.

Can someone send me the gmail support link? I can't find it on the regular google site and I can't get into gmail at all.

Tue Aug 3 2004 1:46 PM

Paul Stone:

Sorry dude. GMail's contact is a form, but you have to be logged into GMail to access it.

If you can't login, you could have someone submit it for you. I'd be happy to help.

Wed Aug 4 2004 11:28 AM

Paul Stone:

GMail has been frustrating for me too, for about the past month. I can't consistently login, but it's still useable.

I too am concerned that the IPO will cause Google to lose its vision. I expect a lot of turnover once the employees are allowed to start selling their shares. At the least, I would expect some of them to go on sabbatical, after working so hard for so many years. That can't be good for the future prospects of the company.

Wed Aug 4 2004 11:57 AM


Hey, Jim. While I can't comment on your Gmail issues - I opted not to use my invitation, that much space would turn my inbox into what my office looks like - but, as to Google's lagging in search catalog updates, and their new search approach, I agree, they're losing focus. Tripod and AF sites that used to appear high in the Google search results are now nowhere to be found. In fact, the referrals from Google to our member pages has seriously dipped in the past year. Google keeps claiming that this is because people aren't linking to our member pages, hence, they're not relevant. However, if that's the case, then why do referrals from Yahoo! and MSN keep climbing, to the point where they've surpassed Google? The folks at Google can't/won't answer this, but from what we can tell in our own research, they've decided to "penalize" what they consider to be non-professional content from member sites like Tripod and Angelfire. The conspiracist in me wonders if this isn't all some sort of big learning opportunity for some launch into web publishing, beyond Blogger.

Thu Aug 5 2004 12:32 PM


How can i get a gmail account? how does one get invited by google?

Sat Aug 21 2004 9:25 AM

paul b:

i cant even go to gmail's site anymore, consistently, times out. i have to access it from a windows server i remote connect to. :\
probably something on my side but ive changed my dns servers, so i'm not sure what it could be.

Sat Nov 6 2004 7:51 PM


I am frustated too ... with this loging problem.

Couple of weeks ago I redirected all my email to gmail. Now I cannot consistently open. Now Error displayed. Just redirects me back to login page.

Like thi morning I have important emails to check . But Can't open it !!!!
I guess I will go back to yahoo. That was definitely better in this regard.

Fri Dec 17 2004 8:25 AM


maybe you should get rid of all that spyware eating away at your know, the same spyware that hosts ads off your comp..thats seems to be the only time i lag

Mon Apr 11 2005 10:11 PM



From today i got another problem. The gmail page is opening but i see only a white page and no message or anything there and it is showing that the gmail page is opened correctly.

Just few hour before also it was ok, but now i don't have any idea what type of problem it is. Before i never face such problem.

Thu Apr 21 2005 5:17 AM


i m not able to access gmail web site.. it says cannot find server...i uninstalled nortan antivirus.. then too the problem persists...
please help me... i m badly in need of my messages.. i m a fresher... companies should have called me for interview :-(

Thu Jun 2 2005 8:31 AM


Can't access my gmail.Web page won't let me log in,for 2 days now.Very frustrating,& a real "Dilemma", hence the identity name.Can't find the problem. HELP!!!!


Fri Jun 17 2005 11:08 AM


I am unable to open the, when i am open the site it give a alert message site is not found click on the name try again.
please help me...
Srikanth L.

Mon Jul 18 2005 2:47 AM

Matt Drake:

OK. Guys, I don't think some of you get the point. Gmail is in beta, meaning that it is not reliable and that they are constantly updating/fixing it. You cannot expect it to be perfect, which many of you are used to with other email accounts. You cannot even compare it to Yahoo! Mail or Hotmail. BECAUSE GMAIL IS STILL IN BETA! Don't use it if you don't like it. All I know is that if and when (I haven't yet) I encounter a problem, then I will immediately report it to Gmail Support and do my best so they can fix it. That is the only way I know that when Gmail releases from beta and goes public, it will probably be the best email service around.

As for lagging up a lot and only being able to read *some* of your mail, that is not Gmail's problem. I have never heard of (and I quote you Jim) "...some portion of my data is in google-never-never-land and it can only be reached after hours." on any support issues regarding Gmail.

That sounds like it's your end. Liton, like I said above, the Gmail Team are constantly fixing it. That may mean that Gmail needs to be down for sometime (meaning they may not have the login page available). Now instead of complaining about a beta (which if any of you guys have tested a beta before you would know that complaining is the stupidest thing you can do as a beta user. you can't complain, you can only submit problems so it becomes more stable), why not set up a POP (Post Office Protocol) account so that way, you can use Gmail, but if you can't access a really important email and really need to read it, you can check on your Hotmail account, or Yahoo! or whatever account you set up with a POP account.

That would be the logical thing to do instead of write and comment on articles about how annoying and unstable Gmail is! Also, seeing as how you all are having so many problems with Gmail, there is absolutely no way you can complain about Gmail if you haven't submitted your problem to the support, otherwise there is no way it will be fixed and you might as well just shoot yourself in the foot whenever you have something to say regarding Gmail.

I am not in defense of Gmail, only showing you ways that you can help it instead of complain about it. I am in no way accusing you that you haven't submitted your problems to support, I am only supporting a very justifiable point about how you should submit if you haven't and are complaining about it. You are all obviously entitled to your own opinions, but only to a certain extent, because it is still BETA!!

As for the google search engine, Jamie, Google takes pride in being the best search host because it uses many techniques to accurately receive information about webpages. Any search engine rarely uses META tags anymore as they are deprecated. There are many techniques and ways of setting up your page, and arranging your links so that Google picks them up and finds the most accurate page on your website for the vaguest of searches. Search for tutorials on setting up pages specifically for Google (or any search engine) to find your page specifically out of others. There are plenty.

Fri Jul 22 2005 2:57 AM


The Gmail site is not opening and an warning message is displayed while I tried to open it that you are about to open a secured page and when i click ok then a white page is displayed. plz anybody there to help me out to get rid of this probelm

Mon Aug 22 2005 12:33 AM

jerry margolis:

I received message "google desktop could not index your Gmail account: fix this problem". Clicking on "fix this problem" the message was (is) "Please correct errors in the following fields: "USER NAME & PASSWORD DO NOT MATCH". I have been unable to resolve this. Please help. Contact me at [email protected] or [email protected] Thank you

Sat Aug 27 2005 5:06 PM


I too is not getting the g-mail since last week
Everyone is feeling cheated by Google and is a question of their credibility now.

Sun Sep 4 2005 11:04 AM


hay wat happend to gmail from last one week iam not able to login into my gmail and i have many important mails in it which has to be replied back. When ever i try to login its showing only its loading but its never opening at all i once waited for 35 minutes thinking it will open but it never opened please can any body can say wats wrong with gmail in the beginging i was the one who promoted this gmail in my friends now i feel yahoo is much better atleast it never fails in opening the mail

Wed Sep 7 2005 11:30 PM


I'm also experiencing lag with gmail which is quite frustrating...I use gmail for my day to day email communication and have only used 8% of my 2.6GB quota...yet it now lags from time to time which causes me not to be able to use gmail minutes at a time :-(

Thu Oct 6 2005 1:07 AM


was unable to access gmail for 2 weeks, tried many things such as removing cookies, emptying cache, removing spy / mal wares, scanning / cleaning the registry (hijackthis.exe) etc. to no avail... and then I realised that when the "s" of "https" was there when entering (you can't access through http://), and my account, it was mysteriously taken out when trying to open gmail... I put the s back and it solved the problem...
Hope it will do 4U2

Sun Oct 30 2005 4:05 AM


I am unable to open the, when i am open the site it give a message that site is loading...but after waiting fr few minutes also it's not opening n the status bar shows Done.
please help me...
ravi k.

Wed Nov 16 2005 11:16 PM


omg gmail suks so bad!! it hasnt let me on for like 3 days! i ahve wrok to do! my friend tried it and it work and i think it is just stupid. if i could i would chagne but i need to keep this account. it so such a dumb email site shouldnt have been made liiek that or not made at all instead

Mon Nov 28 2005 11:51 PM

Nzwaki Mapoma:

Gmail is really giving me problems as whenever I want to access my account it just does not let me do that. I am seriously concidering changing to another e-mail provider.

Thu Dec 1 2005 8:30 AM


I can't get into my account at all, suddenly for no reason it would seem. I try to click on gmail and get cannot find saerver message every time.

Fri Dec 2 2005 8:43 AM


I am unable to login any password related account . I am able to open any site but when I enter user id and password for hotmail,yahoo,google or any other credit card account. I get this error page cannot be displayed. I delete cookies and temp file but problem remain same.

Sat Dec 3 2005 8:44 AM


Frankly I dont CARE if gmail is still in Beta. For the last four or five days I havent even been able to open the LOGIN PAGE. It keeps saying page cant be displayed all the time and Im sick of it. I like many others have important work to do and they cannot justify this kind of interuption because of a simple bug. They have freaking experts working for them coding and fixing things they should be ABLE to work out a couple of simple bugs. Its what theyre PAID for. Having the support form only accesible when youre logged in is completly ridiculous. In having it set up like that they dont recieve anywhere near the right number of complaints to correspond with the right amount of actual problems and thus they are able to pass it off as a sucess when in fact its NOT.

Gmail has always been tempermental at best but not even being able to load the login page is just too much.

Sat Dec 10 2005 10:47 AM


This is becoming unbearable, for the last 2 days i havent been able to login. I have my mail client configured to pop mail from gmail, but i cant pop mail neither can i access the login page on my browser.

whether in beta or not I think they should inform the public when they have any outages...

Thu Dec 22 2005 12:55 AM

Jim Gilliam:

These outages are not widespread, they happen randomly to a handful of people. It's like your data gets stuck in an abyss and gmail can't find it. It's still there, google engineers just have to pull it out of the abyss. And there's no one to call, so you just have to pray they answer their email. It's really scary. Mine was out for 6 weeks before they got it fixed. Theoretically, they are faster at it now, since I was probably one of the first people to be afflicted.

Thu Dec 22 2005 1:40 AM


I have different experience. Mostly I open gmail in the University and it works fine. But when I connected the Internet from my house via the University (using dial up networking), I can go to any web sites except gmail. I asked the University's admin to figure out but haven't got answer yet.
Thus, I changed to another ISP (also dial from home), I can open gmail.

Now I'm confuse. I'm trying to find what the cause really is.
1. Same ISP (University) but different places: at Uni-OK, Home-cannot :(
2. Same place (at Home) but different ISPs: Uni-cannot :(, other ISP-OK ???

Well, this problem leads me here. I just know (by reading your guy's posts) that it(gmail) has problem long time ago. Probably I have to switch back to my Uni email again :{

If anyone has any suggestions, I will appreciate. I just tried "https:" but it doesn't work when connect through the University modem.

Lastly, sorry for the long note. Thanks for reading.

Wed Dec 28 2005 2:35 PM

Sara kittle:

Gmail does the same thing to me. My husband and I both have accounts and it often won't work. For the past two day's we have not been able to check our mail. We can get the login page to open but after you click sign in it just says loading, loading, loading, loading. AhhhhH! I really need to check my mail.


Tue Jan 3 2006 10:57 AM

The Last Jedi:

I got Gamil last month and yesterday when I tried to log on I just said the site I was looking for could not be found. I know my internet works otherwise I would not be writeing this, but Gmail is not ready for open access. And I feel that skick to the old accont untill gmail is really finished

Sat Jan 7 2006 10:47 AM


my gmail inbox is not opening please help me

Mon Jan 16 2006 4:11 AM

ravi choudhari:

i could never access gmail inbox in dial-up connection, but never faced this problem in broadband.

Thu Jan 26 2006 8:44 AM

ravi choudhari:

but u can access gmail using outlook express without any prolbem.

Thu Jan 26 2006 8:49 AM


I can't use Gmail.
I tried with https and also http. But. i can't. Anyone can help me to check my mail?

Thu Feb 2 2006 3:39 AM


Same here man! G-mail is a failure. I havent gotten it open, anytime of day, for over 2 weeks! all other websites work fine---exept gmail! DIE GMAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mon Feb 6 2006 11:14 PM


I have no problem with login, but sending out mails. Gmail most of the time told me " Woops, the system is busy, please try again later". Even though I succsessfully sent out mails, it was so slow. Isn't that mails sent out once you press the "send" button?

Thu Feb 9 2006 9:46 PM


can not open my Gmail account. It says "Loading" on page an never open account. what can I do or how can I connect my account. Last 10 days i could read anything from my emails.

Fri Feb 24 2006 8:23 AM


GMAIL WONT WORK AGAIN!!! This is really getting old. Email is very important right now for me. I'm constantly emailing my resumes for my career search. I wish gmail didn't suck!

Tue Feb 28 2006 10:23 AM


I can not login in it at all, maybe becuase I send a big backup file to myself everyday?

Mon Mar 6 2006 12:56 AM


I can login in my name and password onto gmail but then when i am waiting for my inbox to appear i get a page that has "loading" in black letters in the top left hand corner, and the page stops there. No matter how much i refresh or wateva my inbox will not open up. Is there any other way of getting into gmail and how can i fix the problem, please help...!! :-(

Wed Mar 8 2006 2:42 AM

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