Menu
Image-insertion bug locks people out of Gmail

Image-insertion bug locks people out of Gmail

A solution to the problem has eluded Google for months

Beware Gmail users: Inserting images into the body of an email message can get you temporarily banned from your account.

The disconcerting bug has been affecting unsuspecting Gmail users for months, and it's apparently tied to the use of Gmail's spanking-new message-compose interface. Google introduced that interface late last year and made it the default for everybody this year, saying it's faster, simpler and altogether better than the old basic HTML interface.

Google has acknowledged the problem but hasn't been able to stamp it out.

The bug is listed in the Gmail Known Issues page and is the focus of several discussion forum threads in Google Groups, including this long one with more than 250 posts.

"I'm scared to continue to rely on Gmail now. I use it for a lot of time-sensitive messages, both personal and for a not-for-profit organization that I work closely with. I cannot afford to be arbitrarily locked out of my account through no fault of my own due to a bug that Google has acknowledged but has left unresolved for months," an affected user wrote in mid-August in a discussion thread, echoing the frustration of many others.

On the Gmail Known Issues page, Google explains that the bug is triggered under certain scenarios involving "inline images" -- images inserted into the body of email messages.

For example, it hits Firefox users who insert images into messages while composing or replying to email. It also strikes users of any browser when they try to do this with large images. Another trigger is to work "over time" on a draft message that contains many images and attachments.

There are no details as to how large an inserted file needs to be to trigger the bug, nor what amount of time is too long when drafting a message with images and attachments.

When the bug is activated, Google locks people out of their account citing "unusual usage" and telling them it has detected "unusually high levels of activity." It can take up to 24 hours for Google to lift the lockout and restore affected users' access to their accounts.

To reduce the risk of tripping over this issue, Google recommends that people use "a browser other than Firefox" when composing an email with images in its message body. They should also avoid using the "drag and drop" method for inserting large images into messages, and instead add them as attachments by clicking on the paper clip icon.

"We're working hard to resolve this issue," the Google support note reads.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesGoogleMailinternet

Featured

Slideshows

Reseller News launches inaugural Hall of Fame lunch

Reseller News launches inaugural Hall of Fame lunch

Reseller News welcomed 2015 and 2016 inductees - Darryl Swann, Dave Rosenberg, Gary Bigwood, Keith Watson, Mike Hill and Scott Green - to the inaugural Reseller News Hall of Fame lunch, held at the French Cafe in Auckland. The inductees discussed how the channel can collectively work together to benefit New Zealand, the Kiwi skills shortage and the future of the industry. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Reseller News launches inaugural Hall of Fame lunch
Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

​As the channel changes and industry voices deepen, the need for clarity and insight heightens. Market misconceptions talk of an “under pressure” distribution space, with competitors in that fateful “race for relevance” across New Zealand. Amidst the cliched assumptions however, distribution is once again showing its strength, as a force to be listened to, rather than questioned. Traditionally, the role was born out of a need for vendors and resellers to find one another, acting as a bridge between the testing lab and the marketplace. Yet despite new technologies and business approaches shaking the channel to its very core, distributors remain tied to the epicentre - providing the voice of reason amidst a seismic industry shift. In looking across both sides of the vendor and partner fences, the middle concept of the three-tier chain remains centrally placed to understand the metrics of two differing worlds, as the continual pulse checkers of the local channel. This exclusive Reseller News Roundtable, in association with Dicker Data and rhipe, examined the pivotal role of distribution in understanding the health of the channel, educating from the epicentre as the market transforms at a rapid rate.

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel
Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

After Hours made a welcome return to the channel social calendar last night, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and resellers descending on The Jefferson in Auckland to kickstart 2017. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017
Show Comments