Remember the little freak accident caused by Google by some users woke up on Monday only to find their Gmail accounts emptied of all their messages? Well, it seems that Google has managed to identify the culprit responsible for the little incident, and has issued a statement describing what actually happened that day. On the plus side, the search giant has also assured users that no data was permanently wiped off the face of the virtual world.

Read on to find out more.

Do you remember the article we posted two days back about some users logging into Gmail, only to find out that every single message and folder in their Gmail account has been cleaned off without their knowledge? We're sure you did: after all, email conversations are serious business, and having all your messages wiped out in an instant without warning is definitely the best way to ruin anyone's day.

Well, the good news about this little issue is that Google has confirmed what most people were probably anxiously waiting for. According to a message posted on Google's official Gmail blog, the loss of emails was caused by a botched storage software update: this update apparently contained a bug severe enough to affect several copies of backup content stored across multiple data centres.

However, uses can rest assured that their data is still safe from complete erasure. This is because the search giant claims that it has kept additional backups on tape drives which are not hooked up to online-capable machines, and has thus survivied the failed update. The only issue is that it will take time for the search giant to restore said data from the tape drives, as the recovery process appears to be much more complex than simply sending a request to another data centre.

Still, users can take consolation in the fact that Google has been working hard to ensure that all recovered content is being processed and sent out to affected users as soon as possible. According to the latest update from the search giant, all backup content has already been successfully processed and are now currently on their way back to their respective users' mail folders, where they rightfully belong.

With any luck, affected users should have their Gmail messages fully restored by the end of today.

Source: Gmail blog