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Why did Google fail?

This morning Google has been experiencing serious problems. The search page isn't coming up for people, and I'm hearing reports that Gmail and Google's ads are also experiencing problems. I'm one of those folks who can't load Google. But YouTube seems to be working alright.

It may also just depend on where you live. I've talked to a few folks in different parts of Florida and even folks in New York, North Carolina and Chicago and they can load Google just fine. You can follow the buzz on Twitter here with folks saying Google is either down or working for them. People on Twitter are also reporting problems to @sans_isc (The Internet Storm Center, a program of the SANS Institute) which monitors the level of malicious activity on the Internet.

I've heard a few folks calling it a denial of service attack. Waiting to hear back with answers from Google's media relations team. Will post updates as I hear about them.

Message me on Twitter @BridgetCarey or leave a comment below and let me know if Google or Gmail is working for you -- and please include your location. I've already gotten a few replies from Twitter users who are having problems.

UPDATE 12:15 -- Google and Gmail is working again at The Miami Herald offices. I'm getting reports that it's also back up in New York, Wisconsin and Illinois. The #Googlefail panic seems to be over for the most part.

UPDATE 12:35 -- On its Twitter account, Google says it is working on the problem and will post updates soon:

"We’re aware some users are having trouble accessing some Google services. We’re looking into it, and we’ll update everyone soon."

UPDATE 1:20 -- Google just made another Twitter post:

"The issue affecting some Google services has been resolved. We’re sorry for the inconvenience, and we'll share more details soon."

UPDATE 1:30 --  Although Google says it is resolved, it seems there are still problems around the world. By looking at Google.com related products on Just Ping -- which tracks packets of information -- it's showing that Hong Kong, Sydney, Zurich and Mumbai are still experiencing a total Google outage. You can track it here: Just Ping.

UPDATE 2:00 -- It's unclear how reliable Just Ping's information is. When I asked a Google spokesperson about Just Ping's data showing Google problems in other countries, they said as far as they understand, the problem has been resolved worldwide. 

UPDATE 3:22 -- Google has posted an explanation about today's problems. Basically the error routed too much traffic to Asia, and a world-wide jam was created.

"5/14/2009 12:15:00 PM
Imagine if you were trying to fly from New York to San Francisco, but your plane was routed through an airport in Asia. And a bunch of other planes were sent that way too, so your flight was backed up and your journey took much longer than expected. That's basically what happened to some of our users today for about an hour, starting at 7:48 am Pacific time.

An error in one of our systems caused us to direct some of our web traffic through Asia, which created a traffic jam. As a result, about 14% of our users experienced slow services or even interruptions. We've been working hard to make our services ultrafast and "always on," so it's especially embarrassing when a glitch like this one happens. We're very sorry that it happened, and you can be sure that we'll be working even harder to make sure that a similar problem won't happen again. All planes are back on schedule now.

Posted by Urs Hoelzle, SVP, Operations"


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Gmail was down this morning but is back now. Google has been ok. Also experienced problems with both two days ago.


7:06 AM Eastern time...Google still not OK.


Still out in Albuquerque, NM. Dangit.


12:05 eastern.
Atlanta, Georgia Still out. :)


Toronto, Ontario Canada still out. I dunno how long ours has been down but I have to say I was quite worried about the largest search engine going down. Haven't seen anything like this since Yahoo and the MafiaBoy escapades. . .


New York (Long Island). Google.com is out. Gmail is out. Google maps is still working for all the good that will do me.


And its back. That wasn't long

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