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Mailbag: How Can I Tell If My Web Apps Are Down?

Mailbag: How Can I Tell If My Web Apps Are Down?

The Most Frustrating Thing About Web Apps …

… is when they are not working and you aren’t sure if it’s just you or if the service is suffering an outage.

Web Apps - Confusing

Earlier this week I read this question in the Warptest mailbag,

“Dear Warptest, how can I tell if my Gmail, iCloud or other web services are down or if it’s just me?” <redacted>

The Answer(s)

Ok <redacted> let’s take a closer look at the popular web apps: –

Google App Status

  • The Apps status page (like most Google services) is geolocated and no doubt provides status on the servers my Gmail, Apps, Google+ etc are running from.
  • The page displays a chart of status for the past 7 days, you can scroll back in time and there is a handy RSS feed for each set of services.
  • The web services are divided between those covered by the Google Apps SLA and those not.
  • There is a link to the Apps help page and from there you can report an issue. This is one click more than either Apple or Microsoft’s page requires.

Apple Apps Status

  • The Apps status page displays the time as UTC +03 which is not my timezone. Is this a bug or does Apple not geolocate? Unsure.
  • The page displays an extensive list of web services (who knew there were so many?) and below a nice date / time slider bar to check status for different times.
  • A nice touch is the link on this page to contact Apple support for further help.

Microsoft Apps Status

  • The App status page UI is in keeping with the typographic New Windows UI and displays current status in the main pane.
  • For historical details you need to click on a specific service and the page will display past, recent issues related to the service selected.
  • Again you can report your issue from the web page

If you want your finger on the pulse regarding web apps like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr or other popular Apps then DownRightNow is the site for you.

  • The site provides a central dashboard for all these apps, their status and history.
  • The site encourages an element of crowdsourcing allowing users to report new issues via the site or their Twitter account. They have a good FAQ to explain the recommended hashtags when you tweet.

The Warptest POV

These are useful tools for techies who are faced with issues with Gmail, iCloud, Facetime or other popular services.

The real problem is what do you do next if according to the App Status your web apps (is/) are working properly?

One trick is if you have a smartphone, then check the mobile app for the service too. Even if you have issues with the desktop app, you may still be able to keep on working on your phone.

Of course, if it’s a recurring problem only with you then I expect I’ll be hearing from you to see if I can help out.

That should answer our mailbag question today. If you have a question of your own then send it in, don’t be a stranger.

 
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