Google Spreadsheets down for several hours today

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As a company we rely heavily on Google Docs. We have all our documents in the cloud and use them from several locations. Today, however, the working day started with a lemon: Google Spreadsheets refused their obedience. The documents were there, they have opened, but we were not able to edit them.

After a quick search for the error “Trying to reach google.com…” that was displayed on the top of each spreadsheet with ‘latest’ feature turned on I have noticed that many users have the same problem. I have checked the Apps Status and the problem was not reported. Users seeing the error are from different countries, using different browsers and OS, have paid or free Google Docs accounts and arehaving co-workers that see the error as well.

After several hours Google acknowled the error and posted it on the Apps dashboard. The error should affect “less than 3.4%” of all user base. After two posts and some time they have reported:

“Google Spreadsheets service has already been restored for some users, and we expect a resolution for all users in the near future. Please note this time frame is an estimate and may change.”

However, I haven’t noted a change in service and the same the users from the Google Docs Help section that have reported the error. I hope Google fixes the error for everyone soon since it’s not fixed yet at the time of writing this post. The service gets back again for a minute or two every hour, but this is far from full recovery.

Such times are important to ask a question if the cloud services are reliable enough and ready for prime time.