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Summary:

Update:If you are ready to give up your desktop clients and are considering switching to all-Google all-the-time, as one of us has done, be warned that the future is not simple and fraught with risk. An increasing number of GMail subscribers are complaining that their emails, […]

Update:If you are ready to give up your desktop clients and are considering switching to all-Google all-the-time, as one of us has done, be warned that the future is not simple and fraught with risk. An increasing number of GMail subscribers are complaining that their emails, accounts and archives are simply vanishing.

For nearly 10 days, a strange sort of bug is simply cleaning out the GMail inboxes. An afflicted soul wrote to us this morning, warning about this bug. Just when we were saying GMail is getting better and better. (If you are you one of the victims, please leave a comment and we will try and get to Google people and see what is going on.) On the GMail thread on (what else) Google Threads, a user writes:

Not only we are surprised that these sorts of issues happens to a company like Google but we are pissed off because e-mail is the core of our internet life.

A Gmail Guide responded to complaints on December 22nd, saying that they were looking into it. As of December 28, people were still waiting for the GSanta to show up. Anyway, hate to say this, Google is the new Microsoft. It is pounding start-ups with its traffic might, and is being afflicted by bugs.

Seriously guys, if you are a GMail user, perhaps it is time to download the GMail via POP3 access. Don’t wait, do it now! And Liz, add reliability and 100% uptime to your GMail wishlist.

Update: Google spokeswoman sent us an email explaining the situation:

Regretfully, a small number of our users — around 60 — lost some or all of their email received prior to December 18th. Once we found out about this issue, we worked day and night to confirm that only a few accounts were affected and to do whatever we could to restore as much of the users’ accounts as we could. We’ve also reached out to the people who were affected to apologize and to work with them to restore the email from any personal backup they might have.

We know how important Gmail is to our users – we use it ourselves for our corporate email. We have extensive safeguards in place to protect email stored with Gmail and we are confident that this is a small and isolated incident.

  1. I can kill myself if something like this happen to me…literally.
    Anyone know of any tool that downloads all gmail mails for backup of something similar?

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  2. Yakito

    http://betapundit.blogspot.com/2006/03/how-to-use-outlook-to-backup-your.html

    Just used it with outlook express and worked like a charm.

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  3. Yes… it’s called Outlook. Setup POP3 access from your Outlook or Outlook Express (or Thunderbird, whatever…) e-mail client and you can keep all of your Gmail messages stored locally on your computer.

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  4. @Yakito: As said in the article, you can set up any mail client (ie Outlook, Thunderbird etc.) to download all of the mail from your GMail account onto your hard drive. Do a google search for: “Name of Your Preferred Client” +GMail and you should come up with some tutorials on how its done.

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  5. A bit of research into all the posts in that thread on google group, i noticed that all the people posting messages about lost and deleted emails have never written anything on the Google Groups before, which i think is strange. Also most of them are asking about how to contact support google in google groups, where in the first place Gmail Help leads to Google Gmail Group. Also company like Google should have enough backups of your email. If not they better have that in place soon.
    -V

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  6. I question the wisdom of ever storing any important information on someone else’s server without having a local copy. Take your Gmail, forward it to an IMAP, and enjoy the benefits of both Gmail spam filtering and IMAP redundancy. Fuck POP… POP is dead.

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  7. Google apps aren’t perfect.
    As of right now Orkut ( Google’s social networking site) is down.
    It states “orkut is under construction.
    please check back soon (= “

    Murphy?

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  8. @Mike D:

    Although I agree that an IMAP solution is ideal, POP is NOT dead. Gmail if anything has resurrected using POP as a viable method, even with your redundancy issue. Great thing about Gmail is that when your local email client downloads your messages via POP, those messages are automatically sent to your Gmail “archive” – there is your redundancy.

    -Neil

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  9. although i mostly check my email using Gmail/Browser…

    i also d/l my email using mail.app onto my MacBook… that way i have the best of both worlds… and it has proven to be very useful because i also have access to my emails via Spotlight!

    worth trying out Om, if only for being able to search you emails from within OS X…

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  10. I still don’t see much upside to running POP over IMAP. There’s really only one material advantage and that is if you are running Outlook. Outlook is a bit weird about IMAP mail deletion/expunging. Other than that, IMAP wins on all counts.

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