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Update: Google Restores Gmail Service

Gmail experienced yet another outage -- this time blocking access to users' contact lists -- representing the second wide-scale technical difficulty for Google this month.

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Altogether, the Google outage, which lasted for about two hours Thursday, blocked users from accessing Gmail accounts, as well as their contact lists. In addition, Chat, Auto-complete and the contact manager was not properly functioning, Google warned.

"We're working to fix the problem, and in the meantime, you should be able to continue to read and send mail as normal," Google said on its Help pages for Google's Webmail utility earlier Thursday.

Before the service was fixed, Google administrators said Thursday morning in an note on its Apps Status Dashboard that the Gmail outage only affected a "small subset of users," but simultaneously called the issue a "big deal."

Upon accessing Gmail, some users received a message that appeared at the top of their screens, alerting them that Gmail "is temporarily unable to access your contacts. You may experience issues while this persists."

The Gmail outage was reported widely on Twitter as the micro-blogging site was flooded with Tweets complaining about blocked access to their contact lists as well as a significant latency when accessing their Gmail accounts.

Further updates on the Apps Status Dashboard indicated that the outage was under control despite the fact that contact lists were still inaccessible for many users. Google said it was continuing to investigate the issue and would post updates as needed.

The outage constituted the second technical difficulty for Google so far this month. Gmail also experienced a sweeping global outage Sept. 1 that blocked access to tens of millions of consumer and business accounts for more than an hour.

This article has been updated with new information.

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