Does the world really end when Gmail goes down?
It is pretty easy to take Gmail for granted because, like Microsoft Windows or that stray eyelash you can’t seem to get rid of no matter how many times you gouge your own eyes out, it is always there. But when Gmail goes down, it seems like the whole world just stops. Twitter is instantly abuzz with people panicking that Gmail is down and they don’t know what to do. Instead of panicking, here are some things you can try that may make you feel better when Gmail is out of sorts.
You do know that Gmail will eventually come back up, right? Google has around 425 million users on Gmail (and counting), and many of those users are businesses. The last thing that Google wants is half of a billion people angry at one of its premier services. When Gmail does go down, it is usually not down for long. So maybe the best approach is to just wait for it come back up. You could entertain yourself by watching Twitter freak out about Gmail, or start your own post on Facebook about the Gmail outage.
Before you start posting about Gmail’s demise on social media, you may want to take a closer look at your Internet connection. If no one on Twitter is panicking about Gmail being down, then it could just be you. Check to see if Gmail is down before you start commiserating with others online. It could very well be that your computer has lost its Internet connection, or you may have an issue with your anti-virus or firewall software that is preventing you from getting to Gmail.
If it is your Internet connection, then try the old reliable “turn it off, turn it on” approach with your Internet router. You would be surprised at how often that works. If all else fails, contact your Internet service provider and let them know that your Internet connection is acting strangely and you need help.
Access Gmail Another Way
The main Gmail user interface is not the only way that you can get to Gmail. When the Gmail website is down, it’s doesn’t mean the entire Gmail service is down. One good alternative is to use the Gmail mobile app and see if you can still get your messages that way. Sometimes, the mobile version of Gmail will still operate when the website user interface is down.
If the website interface is down, but the service is still operating, then you may be able to access your Gmail through something like Microsoft Outlook or Windows Live Mail. If you have another email service that you use, then try to have your Gmail diverted to that service while the main Gmail interface is down. It sounds like a really strange idea, but it actually works.
Gmail has a plain HTML interface that you can use to access the service when the pretty pictures and fancy features don’t work. You can bookmark the Gmail HTML page and then give it a try when the full interface is not working. The HTML version is really stripped down, but it is better than not having any Gmail at all.
Give Google Takeout a try and see if that helps. Google Takeout is a service to save your Gmail data offline or on another online service. When you initiate Takeout, it mirrors your Gmail and puts everything into a separate file that you can take wherever you want.
Have A Backup To Your Gmail
Gmail is not the only email service on the Internet, you know. There are plenty of free email services you can use as a backup in case Gmail goes down. Your Internet service provider probably gave you an email address when you signed up for your service that you can use in a pinch. All you need to do is make sure that your backup email service has all of your Gmail contacts in it.
When you click on the “contacts” portion of your Gmail account, click on the “more” option and you will see the ability to export your addresses to a .CSV file. It is best to use the .CSV export function that allows you to put your contacts into Outlook or any other email provider, because that will make your list easier to transfer. It will give you a file that you can import directly into a different email service. Be sure that you update your contacts with your other email service every once in a while so that you always have your complete list of contacts.
As soon as your Gmail goes down, send a message to all of your contacts using your backup account letting them know about your backup address while Gmail is down. It is best to send the email to yourself and then BCC your mailing list. As you get emails into your backup account, forward copies to your Gmail account so that they will be there when you go back to Gmail.
When Gmail is back up, send an email from your Gmail account letting everyone know that you are back on Gmail. It can be a little time consuming, but at least your contacts will know how to get hold of you.
Don’t Use Gmail
They say that the easiest way to avoid getting run over by a car is to not play in traffic. Well, then the easiest way to avoid disaster when Gmail goes down is to not use Gmail in the first place.
Check out your options and see if maybe there is something else out there that works better for you than Gmail. Maybe you don’t like the way Gmail archives your old emails, or you have problems creating folders to store your messages. There are other providers who have different ways of handling your email and you just may find one that you really like if you look hard enough.
Do You Scream When Gmail Goes Out?
Nearly half a billion computer users around the world utilize Google’s email service known as Gmail. When Gmail goes down, nearly half a billion people freak out and start looking for answers. If you rely on your email service to be up and running for business or personal reasons, then you will need alternatives when Gmail suddenly bottoms out.
What will you do the next time Gmail goes down? How will you survive? What steps can you take to make sure that your world does not collapse the next time Gmail disappears?