Google Drive outage reminds us that cloud services aren't perfect

By on March 18, 2013, 2:30 PM

Reports this morning of Google Drive becoming inaccessible sent ripples through social media. Shortly after complaints surfaced, Google confirmed Drive was experiencing a noteworthy disruption. The company subsequently resolved the issue and all Google services appear to have returned to normal. 

IsItDownRightNow showed drive.google.com quit responding to pings around 7:03 am PST. Purportedly, the disruption wasn't a global outage but it affects seem to have been fairly widespread. Reports of Google Drive 502 errors are both numerous and international.

For some, Google Drive's down-time spanned at a couple of hours, serving as a reminder that even the mighty Google isn't infallible when it comes to cloud services. Those who have a daily reliable on Google Drive's availability -- like educational institutions, businesses and Chromebook users -- likely know this first hand.

Although unconfirmed, some users claimed they could still access specific documents with direct URLs (e.g. bookmarks) or by having enabled Google Drive Offline prior to the service interruption. If you haven't already, enabling Google Drive Offline certainly can't be a bad idea. Even if you don't though, outages like these are pretty rare -- but they can still be a pain in the butt when they do happen. And of course, they do happen.

Incidentally, Microsoft recently experienced its own outage which affected users of SkyDrive, Outlook and related services. We later learned the outage was caused by an overheating data center. The exact cause for this blemish in Google Drive's uptime remains unknown, however.

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