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Some Hotmail Accounts Wiped

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the you-didn't-need-that,-right? dept.

Microsoft 298

tomhudson writes "PC Magazine reports that many Hotmail accounts have lost all their emails. Users' entire email histories have apparently been lost. 'Users can still log in sans issue. However, they arrive at empty inboxes: No custom folders, no messages in "Sent" or "Deleted," nothing. As one might expect, the abruptness (and unexpectedness) of the purge has left some of Hotmail's long-time users a bit in the dark.'"

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In related news, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736752)

people still use Hotmail!

That's what I was going to say (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736764)

Besides, isn't it called something terrible these days like "Windows Live Hotmail"? Once more showing That things connected to "Windows" is a data loss risk.

Re:That's what I was going to say (5, Funny)

Totenglocke (1291680) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736812)

Besides, isn't it called something terrible these days like "Windows Live Hotmail"?

Well apparently with this new "upgrade" they're changing the name to Windows Dead Hotmail.

Re:That's what I was going to say (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737446)

Sounds like Windows Notmail.

In related news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736904)

Some people's parents still use hotmail!

Re:That's what I was going to say (3, Funny)

BinBoy (164798) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736916)

Besides, isn't it called something terrible these days like "Windows Live Hotmail"? Once more showing That things connected to "Windows" is a data loss risk.

Windows Active Live Visual Hotmail .Net 7 Personal Edition

Re:That's what I was going to say (1)

Angeret (1134311) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737170)

Nah, think I'll pass on that one and wait for the SE version.

Long term hotmail users? (2)

Squeeonline (1323439) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736772)

I would have thought that any long term hotmail users must have been in the dark a long time ago, not to see the light of gmail. /googleFan. We have it forced on us by my university, and as soon as it was possible, I set up everything to forward to my gmail account. Havent had to use the shoddy interface in a long time.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (4, Insightful)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736850)

Although I also prefer Gmail, you're being extremely naive if you think any remotely hosted and controlled service is immune to issues of this nature. This should be as good a reminder as any for all of us to set up local backups for our email services.

On that note, does anyone have any recommendations for backup software/file formats? I seem to remember that last time I looked into the issue there seemed to be some lack of standardisation when looking for an open 'email archive' format to use.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

donotlizard (1260586) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736924)

I use ABC Amber Outlook Converter. I can save all Outlook emails, or specific folders, to various file formats including HTML and PDF.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (4, Insightful)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736934)

I do trust Gmail to have better data integrity because they are more open about their architecture and having read about it, I think it's well designed.

I don't have any expectation of them caring about my email apart from its data-mining value though.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737018)

And if they ever do lose your email you can probably figure out the contents by the tat their ads try to sell you.

I'd bet money their data-mining info is more securely stored than your emails.

Cloud Computing and Joe Btfsplk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737468)

Yes, this is what cloud computing is really about.

http://s3.amazonaws.com/mmc-beta-production/assets/6818/lil_abner_article.jpg

If your "lucky", wackyleaks will upload all the old account data to /.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joe_Btfsplk

Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736936)

Wait a minute. I'm a manager, and I've been reading a lot of case studies and watching a lot of webcasts about The Cloud. Based on all of this glorious marketing literature, I, as a manager, have absolutely no reason to doubt the safety of any data put in The Cloud.

The case studies all use words like "secure", "MD5", "RSS feeds" and "encryption" to describe the security of The Cloud. I don't know about you, but that sounds damn secure to me! Some Clouds even use SSL and HTTP. That's rock solid in my book.

And don't forget that you have to use Web Services to access The Cloud. Nothing is more secure than SOA and Web Services, with the exception of perhaps SaaS. But I think that Cloud Services 2.0 will combine the tiers into an MVC-compliant stack that uses SaaS to increase the security and partitioning of the data.

My main concern isn't with the security of The Cloud, but rather with getting my Indian team to learn all about it so we can deploy some first-generation The Cloud applications and Web Services to provide the ultimate platform upon which we can layer our business intelligence and reporting, because there are still a few verticals that we need to leverage before we can move to The Cloud 2.0.

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (1)

nsheppar (889445) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737022)

Wait a minute, I'm a manager, and

Out of curiosity, does anybody know where this meme (assuming it is actually a meme and not just a single comment people keep reposting) came from? I did a little googling but wasn't able to find much other than a lot of uses of it in slashdot posts.

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (2)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737092)

Out of curiosity, does anybody know where this meme (assuming it is actually a meme and not just a single comment people keep reposting) came from?

Yeah, I do- it came from stupid managers. ;-)

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737120)

It's the opener to "I'm (pretending to be) a person with no idea about technology, but dammit, Google and Facebook got rich quick with that internet thingamajig and I wanna too!"

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (2)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737112)

Hello, I'm working for $bigcorp and I would like to sell you The Cloud. You will see our rates are affordable and we boost your productivity by a magnitude you cannot even imagine yet! Best of all, it will seamlessly integrate with your Indian team (after all, one of the big features of The Cloud is that it's, well, distributed. Distributed like your production, you see, it already fits perfectly!). At the final integration step, you will even no longer have to rely on your team in India should they become too expensive, moving your production elsewhere is easy with The Cloud, after all, you know how everyone always says with the internet it doesn't matter where you are? The Cloud turns this catchphrase into reality.

Mind if I invite you to dinner? We have much to discuss!

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (2)

Mathinker (909784) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737284)

it will seamlessly integrate with your Indian team (after all, one of the big features of The Cloud

Of course! Indians have been using beta version (smoke) clouds for communication since prehistoric times!

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (1)

t2000kw (1066988) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737194)

Cloud 2? My company is working on Cloud 3 Premium Services. We're skipping version 2 altogether to give users the feeling that it's a well-developed platform. We plan to roll it out before it's fully ready and let users be our beta testers, much like a large software company in Washington does. Of course, your data will be safe with our Cloud 3 Premium Services, and we won't share your data with other parties, except those with whom we have a business partnership with.

Re:Data loss is just not an issue with The Cloud! (1)

chooks (71012) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737366)

Coming soon: Cloud Forever. It will be available on your Phantom gaming system Some Day Soon.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (4, Informative)

JustOK (667959) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736948)

use gmail, then use thunderbird to dl (without deleting from server) and something like mozbackup

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736986)

exactly, which is why I have both Pop and IMAP setup on my gmail account. my phone, most of my computers all use IMAP however one computer is setup to only use POP, and it downloads all saved/ archived mail every time it logs in from it's last login.

this way i have a snapshot of all but the most recent mails on one of my computers, that i can back up.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737040)

?

Maildir and/or the mbox format.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

tokul (682258) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737058)

I looked into the issue there seemed to be some lack of standardisation when looking for an open 'email archive' format to use.

RFC822 and RFC3501 look like standards.

You will need Cyrus or Dovecot, if you want faster fulltext search.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (2)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737262)

I don't trust Gmail not to lose my email, that's why I download all of it to my computer via imap. The nice thing about gmail is that they allow you to upload emails back to the server if need be.

I learned that lesson that time that Google lost those emails and couldn't back them up. Fortunately, I wasn't affected by that.

Even with good design and careful management there's always the possibility of something being lost. Even in the idealized constant backups scenario it might mean that you're without a particular email for a period of time.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737458)

>I don't trust Gmail not to lose my email

I don't either, but I also know that so many corporations and organizations use the commercial side of Gmail, that the slightest outage or deletion problem will be met with a lot more noise than I could make. If this same incident happened to Gmail, the story wouldn't just be a tech news article, it would be headline mainstream news.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737290)

Although I also prefer Gmail, you're being extremely naive if you think any remotely hosted and controlled service is immune to issues of this nature. This should be as good a reminder as any for all of us to set up local backups for our email services.

Indeed. As a long-time hotmail user, I am extremely happy that a few months ago I finally setup getmail for all my online mailboxen. I have both a Hotmail account and a Gmail account (plus uni, isp, employer), but I don't feel particularly happy Gmail's overtly targeted advertising. Add to that the fact that my hotmail account hasn't changed in almost fifteen years now, I don't see any reason to drop it.

On that note, does anyone have any recommendations for backup software/file formats? I seem to remember that last time I looked into the issue there seemed to be some lack of standardisation when looking for an open 'email archive' format to use.

mbox? It's the standard mailbox format basically since the birth of e-mail. The only programs unable to read/import it are from Redmond. I don't know your situation, but for me personally that's more of a plus than a downside.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (2)

Nirac (1347363) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737488)

I use Thunderbird to save them to eml. Outlook will also save to eml, and I'm sure most desktop clients will as well.

Quoting Wikipedia here, "Used by many email clients including Microsoft Outlook Express, Windows Mail and Mozilla Thunderbird.[36] The files are plain text in MIME format, containing the email header as well as the message contents and attachments in one or more of several formats."

Hopefully I'm not misunderstanding what you're asking for.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

robmv (855035) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737492)

even if you use only the web fontend of GMail, you could setup an email client like Thunderbird with IMAP, if you only care to backup the emails and not the labels hierarchy, just tell GMail the only label you want to publish on IMAP is "All Mail" and setup you email client to sync that folder

Re:Long term hotmail users? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736964)

Light of Gmail?

With Hotmail, I don't have to give my cell phone number so that they can send me a text message with a key. That's creepy. I don't want cell phone numbers tied with email accounts and I don't want Google to have that information.

I don't care what their reasons are for doing that and I know why their doing it but tough shit - I won't use Gmail.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

Demonoid-Penguin (1669014) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737084)

With Hotmail, I don't have to give my cell phone number so that they can send me a text message with a key. That's creepy. I don't want cell phone numbers tied with email accounts and I don't want Google to have that information.

Gmail have special rules just for you? How nice. They don't force me to have a phone number on record.

Now it's me that's sad.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (2)

vbraga (228124) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737202)

Try to create a new account. It will ask for a phone number.

How interesting (1)

Mathinker (909784) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737304)

> Try to create a new account. It will ask for a phone number.

You didn't, perchance, just try to leave that blank?

Last time I checked, it was possible.

Re:How interesting (2)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737442)

You didn't, perchance, just try to leave that blank?

I did with someone who was going to get an e-mail address for the first time. They were unable to send e-mails until that was filled out.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

Jaktar (975138) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736994)

Why not maintain both? It's trivial to setup access through MS mail and Thunderbird. If you do use a mail client, there's no need to use their "shoddy" interface and they all look the same.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

tokul (682258) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737030)

I would have thought that any long term hotmail users must have been in the dark a long time ago, not to see the light of gmail.

What light? You are replacing one third party email provider with another and see the light in it? Maybe you see the light comming from the end of tunnel, but I will disappoint you. You are still going to hell.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

Hydian (904114) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737076)

Why would I move over to my Gmail accounts as my primaries? All of my email accounts look the same both on my phone and in my email client. It all comes to the same place no matter where it is sent to, so it doesn't gain me anything for the effort involved to switch (no matter how minimal.) I already give Google plenty of my data, so spreading it around a bit to make it harder for them to gather is in my best interests.

This is also not the first time that Hotmail has experienced a data loss. It happened several years ago. Any free email service is going to be vulnerable though as it is highly unlikely that they are backing up your data.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737248)

We have it forced on us by my university, and as soon as it was possible, I set up everything to forward to my gmail account. Havent had to use the shoddy interface in a long time.

(posting AC as I work for a university as $DAYJOB, as an admin for our internal mail systems and the whipping boy for the outsourced live@edu stuff)

A lot of people do that kind of thing, but it's just asking for trouble in my professional opinion.

1 - Depending on where you're forwarding to, the forwarded messages may or may not get through. Hotmail's cloud doesn't exactly have the best reputation - and if a few dozen of your fellow students fall for a phishing scam and that corner of the cloud gets a bad reputation for a while, mail forwarded out of it may or may not be accepted. Add to that the fact that Hotmail now seem to be re-writing the envelope-sender address to your own hotmail/live address for forwarded messages, and neither you nor the sender will find out if it fails unless you check the hotmail/live account periodically. Gmail has a POP pick-up option - use that instead of forwarding, it's a far safer option. Do you really want to risk missing out on receiving important re-enrolment information, or other things that might be inconvenient or costly if lost?

2 - Live@EDU accounts not accessed for more than 270 days go inactive, as Microsoft assume they've been abandoned. They'll stop accepting mail, and they'll purge any existing content. They can be re-activated at any time, but that won't get back what was lost from them or what was bounced while they were inactive. A small but significant number of students will activate their account when they enrol and set forwarding on it, then never access it directly again. This means that at the end of the academic year, just when the re-enrolment information is being sent out, their accounts shut themselves down. Again, that can be lots of fun for all concerned - especially when someone like me proves that we attempted delivery, but that the account went inactive due to the student's neglect.

In all honesty, I can't tell you for sure if POP pickup will keep the account active - if it counts as direct access for Microsoft's activity assessment - because I've never had cause to ask Microsoft about it, but it is certainly more reliable to poll the mailbox and pick up what was accepted by Hotmail than to trust that your other ISP or mail provider will accept everything that comes out of the festering sewer that is the Hotmail cloud. So use POP pickup and make sure you use that "shoddy" Hotmail interface at least once every six months just in case. And if your university is moving to a hosted Exchange solution for student mail under the Live@EDU programme (as we are, once some legal/privacy issues are sorted out for existing accounts), I think you'll find it a lot better anyway.

Re:Long term hotmail users? (3, Funny)

gcerullo (1573093) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737418)

I've taken the extra step of not only forwarding all email received by my Hotmail account to my Gmail account. I also forward all mail received by my Gmail account to my Hotmail account. Although, shortly after implementing this strategy, I've noticed a lot of duplicate emails in each inbox and my mailboxes keep filling up. It's not even SPAM, it's just the same messages being repeated over and over and over again.

Save thy emails by downloading them. (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736780)

I use Zimbra, but whatever tool you use, do periodically slurp your webmail and back it up.

Re:Save thy emails by downloading them. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736840)

I use crowd based storage. I tell my friends my email password. If I lose my mail I only have to figure out who is pissed off with me about what.

Re:Save thy emails by downloading them. (3, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737028)

"I use crowd based storage."

I tried that for my beer. It didn't work out.

What happened? (4, Funny)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736788)

Maybe they finally tried to switch Hotmail over to Windows NT...

Re:What happened? (1)

cbhacking (979169) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737300)

I get the joke you're trying to make, but it's worth pointing out that this was not only done long ago, it was done using a relatively unknown capability of NT - the POSIX subsystem that allows apps written for Unix-like operating systems to run unmodified (aside from a recompile) on NT. It was actually one of the first major uses of this subsystem, since at the time there was no way to move Hotmail onto Win32 without re-writing it.

Same as Danger (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736796)

"Microsoft's product team is allegedly aware of the issue and is actively looking into whatever it might be."

Seriously? It's typical Microsoft incompetence just like Danger was. 'Nuf said.

OMG (1)

Surakin (1567445) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736800)

OMG the email chains were all TRUE!!

Simple... (2)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736806)

you get what you pay for. If email is valuable to you, back it up yourself, or get a service which provides an SLA (uptime, backup, etc). MS's Hotmail specifically says they're not responsible for loss of data. But, people use it because it's free, then want to bitch when there's a problem.

Re:Simple... (5, Insightful)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736860)

"MS's Hotmail specifically says they're not responsible for loss of data"

Whereas the likely truth is that they _are_ responsible for loss of data, but they don't _accept_ responsibility.

Re:Simple... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737052)

Disclaiming responsibility is easier when you offer something for free than when you take money for it.

Actually (1)

justthinkit (954982) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737172)

Actually it has been Hotmail policy to wipe your account if you don't use it for a while. I think it was 30 days. Can't remember as I haven't used Hotmail in 5 or 6 years. I do remember setting a reminder to check my Hotmail account monthly or else I would lose all the spam I hadn't read yet.

Re:Simple... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737178)

Whereas the likely truth is that they _are_ responsible for loss of data, but they don't _accept_ responsibility.

And that, in turn, is still distinct from whether they can (and/or will) be _held_ responsible, another thing that the GP appears to miss. Of course "caveat emptor" always applies, but just because users weren't paying for Hotmail doesn't mean that Hotmail is totally immune no matter what they do.

Re:Simple... (3, Interesting)

MoonBuggy (611105) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736884)

Although I agree that users should have backups in place (and, as I mentioned in another post, any suggestions for a simple bit of cross-platform software that archives into an open format would be helpful), simply saying "It's free, you have no right to bitch" is disingenuous. Yes, in an ideal world one should have a signed contract laying out their precise rights, and yes, any normal free email account has an EULA that basically says "We are not responsible if our service breaks into your house, tars and feathers your spouse, and paints your dog blue", but that does not instantly absolve them from all responsibility in the eyes of their users, wherever they may stand legally. To a reasonable person, there is an expectation of reliability even in a free email service - even if a class action suit wouldn't have a leg to stand on, there's still the (often equally powerful) court of public opinion to deal with.

Backup solution (not cross platform) (1)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737208)

For Firefox and SeaMonkey, there is MozBackup to backup your local profiles, including the mailbox. While available only for Windows, it is Open Source and should therefore not easily disappear.

Of course, relying on MozBackup requires you to generally store your mails at home, not on the server.

Re:Backup solution (not cross platform) (3, Interesting)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737306)

Personally, I like Mailstore Home [mailstore.com] when I'm using Windows. It's convenient, backs up only unique emails and allows for convenient archive. With the ability to search for and restore individual emails as well.

Users can still log in sans issue (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736810)

But can they log in sans serif?

The jury's still out on the cloud, but . . . (2)

indytx (825419) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736816)

Who's going to trust Microsoft to have a part of it? Am I the only person, after the whole Danger debacle and now this, who would never consider trusting Microsoft with any important data? This kind of thing looks really, really bad.

MS's "cloud" image, it's crunch time (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737372)

We keep hearing about how MS wants to move to cloud-based services, with things like office. If they're not taking this extremely seriously and providing five star response, it shoots their cloud image in the foot.

But then, they seem to like shooting themselves in the foot. (you'd think by now they'd have ran out of toes?) I certainly wouldn't trust them to keep my documents safe if they demonstrate they can't even handle my email.

Happened to me a while back (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34736842)

This happened to me on hotmail six years ago. Soon after I stopped using hotmail.

"sans issue" (1)

ebcdic (39948) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736844)

Does the author have any idea what that term really means?

Re:"sans issue" (3, Funny)

msauve (701917) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736870)

Of course. sans = Storage Area NetworkS, which is obviously where the author thinks the problem lies.

Re:"sans issue" (2, Funny)

plover (150551) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736902)

Obviously it was a security breach, which is why they called the SANS [sans.org] institute to help figure it out.

Re:"sans issue" (1)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736946)

sounds like inSANSity to me.

Re:"sans issue" (2)

JustOK (667959) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736970)

I saw an article on that, some sort of sans paper. It was pretty rough.

Re:"sans issue" (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737340)

I think the author meant that there was a "Stuff Appears Nowhere in Sight" issue.

Do you have any idea? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737004)

Do you? The author used it in a perfectly acceptable manner. "Sans" means "without". So "Users can still log in sans issue." can be read as "Users can still log in without issue." That describes the situation perfectly. Users can log in just fine, but they can't view their messages.

I appreciate it when people criticize the authors or submitters for their stupidity or ignorance, but that's just not the case here. You are the one who is in the wrong, and we should criticize you.

Re:"sans issue" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737134)

Seems like he has a decent grasp of it. Are you going to enlighten us?

What do you expect? (4, Insightful)

Dr_Barnowl (709838) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736872)

You gets what you pays for. You're paying nothing except your privacy - which corporations demonstrably don't value highly - in exchange for a webmail service. One which explicitly declares in its terms and conditions that you have no expectation of data integrity.

And if you only ever use the web interface, there isn't even any chance that you've mirrored your mail to your local computer. Webmail relieves you of the responsibility of installing a mail client, backing up your data, etc.

Now everything is going "cloud", I can see a gap in the market for "family cloud" appliances - plonk them on your home network, trust a few similar units on the networks of family members, and get the benefits of redundant backups, mail service, etc, exchanging the cost of your privacy for a few hundred dollars.

Re:What do you expect? (2, Interesting)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736882)

> You gets what you pays for.

No you don't. proof: people buy Microsoft products.

Re:What do you expect? (1)

airfoobar (1853132) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736908)

People's privacy only has low value because people forget to cherish it: it's become available in infinite supply, so its value is approaching zero.

Re:What do you expect? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737108)

"You gets what you pays for. You're paying nothing except your privacy - which corporations demonstrably don't value highly - in exchange for a webmail service."

You mean they punished people with adblockers, who were not doing their part of the deal?

Re:What do you expect? (1)

waterdamagerepair (1969104) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737144)

Thanks for your support

Re:What do you expect? (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737222)

Now everything is going "cloud", I can see a gap in the market for "family cloud" appliances - plonk them on your home network, trust a few similar units on the networks of family members, and get the benefits of redundant backups, mail service, etc, exchanging the cost of your privacy for a few hundred dollars.

And most likely a violation of your internet providers TOS for running those evil 'servers' on a home account.

Re:What do you expect? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737336)

If you get what you pay for, why are the best things in life free?

Re:What do you expect? (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737448)

I can see a gap in the market for "family cloud" appliances - plonk them on your home network, trust a few similar units on the networks of family members, and get the benefits of redundant backups, mail service, etc, exchanging the cost of your privacy for a few hundred dollars.

Good idea, but how are you going to implement it in such a way that the consumers don't actually need to do anything?

To The Cloud! (4, Insightful)

baptiste (256004) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736930)

This makes their new marketing slogan for Windows Live all the more humorous! 'To The Cloud' indeed! More like POOF!

To the MUSHROOM Cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737232)

"This makes their new marketing slogan for Windows Live all the more humorous! 'To The Cloud' indeed! More like POOF!" - by baptiste (256004) on Sunday January 02, @09:02AM (#34736930) Homepage

Ha - a "little correction/amendment" 4U... lol, see subject-line above!

APK

P.S.=> I haven't had this problem, & I've been using hotmail since it came out in beta (so it's a total "freebie" for me - I'm NOT really 100% sure how it works for others anymore though, as in IF it is "paymail" or 'free', etc./et al).

In any event, that's 1 nice thing MS has done for those of us that have been using the service since it's beta days - it doesn't cost us anything.

Still, upon reading this article here this A.M.?

Well, yeah - I was a WEE BIT worried when I saw this here today though this a.m. because I don't like losing email records anymore than the next person does (iirc, I am FAIRLY certain that the "Windows LIVE" email client DOES do a "local backup" of your email folders, IF you "sync it" & set it to do so, but do NOT "quote me" on that much either (as I haven't looked @ Windows LIVE's setup, in ages))... apk

Re:To The Cloud! (1)

waterdamagerepair (1969104) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737276)

I use ABC Amber Outlook Converter. I can save all Outlook emails, or specific folders, to various file formats including HTML

Hotmail has a 30 day inactivity policy (0)

Walking The Walk (1003312) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736962)

This is old news. If you don't log into your Hotmail account for 30 days, they wipe out all your emails. After 60 days, they wipe out your contacts and other custom settings. After a few more months, they delete your account. I lost all my historical emails in 2006; I didn't use my account for anything except keeping track of old emails from the 90s, but it also meant I lost contact details for a lot of friends I didn't contact often. This policy has been reported since at least Nov 2006 [wordpress.com] .

Re:Hotmail has a 30 day inactivity policy (1)

Paradise Pete (33184) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737104)

This is old news. If you don't log into your Hotmail account for 30 days, they wipe out all your emails.

Not according to the article. It says 120 days + a 90 day grace period.

Re:Hotmail has a 30 day inactivity policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737180)

This is old news. If you don't log into your Hotmail account for 30 days, they wipe out all your emails.

Not according to the article. It says 120 days + a 90 day grace period.

Yes, this was changed year ago, and I believe the timeout for deactivating account is more than another year of inactivity. Unfortunately for Hotmail it's reputation has to live with these old limitations. Lately it seems Hotmail has been on a turbo charged dev cycle, after years of lagging hopelessly it has reached or surpassed feature parity with Gmail in just half a year or something. Maybe it's taken over by the same team that is running IE9.

Re:Hotmail has a 30 day inactivity policy (1)

IrquiM (471313) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737422)

So what you are saying is that the email account I haven't used for more than 5 years have at last been wiped?

This could have happened to me! (0)

SpaghettiPattern (609814) | more than 3 years ago | (#34736982)

This could have happened to me!

Except I deleted my Hotmail account as soon as the service was bought by Microsoft. Must have been 'round December 1997.
Much like dealing with shit on your shoe. A little tedious at first but the stench disappears afterwards.

No need for local backup (3, Insightful)

allfreightoncanals (1969106) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737034)

You can easily backup your emails by setting up an account with another webmail provider and set that to download and save email from your original account. Of course that means you are giving two companies access to your information, but since you used web mail to begin with, I'm assuming that you are ok with that.

filtered (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737088)

deleted every email in the inbox?

finally hotmail's spam filtering works!

And that boys and girls (1)

assertation (1255714) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737130)

And that boys and girls is why cloud computing sucks.

Re:And that boys and girls (1)

Ash-Fox (726320) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737412)

And that boys and girls is why cloud computing sucks.

Hotmail doesn't use cloud computing though.

Really deleted or just not visible (2)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737132)

Just because the mails aren't visible doesn't NECESSARILY mean they are deleted. It could just be a replication issue amongst certain servers(you see this happen on slashdot from time to time, ie a story looks like it doesn't have any comments because there was an issue updating the server you are currently using). Eventual consistency is a powerful tool, but things like this can easily happen if a problem occurs.

Yahoo email. (3, Insightful)

the_raptor (652941) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737188)

About two years ago Yahoo changed some back end stuff to rid of the country based email system (I was .au) they had and to centralise everything. In the change many peoples accounts got wiped or they got locked out of their accounts. I got locked out of my account and couldn't remember what smart ass answer I had put in to the secret questions over a decade ago. Yahoo refuse to do anything if you can't get past the secret question and so now I have nothing to do with them.

P.S. Secret questions are the worst "security" feature ever. Either they are far too obvious and easy for casual acquaintances and Internet detectives to break (ala Sarah Palin) or you never remember the stupid shit you put in them many years in the past.

How many nines, again? (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737196)

How many "nines" did Microsoft promise with their supposed reliability?

Re:How many nines, again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737230)

Are you retarded? They don't have any SLAs for hotmail - it's a free email service.

Re:How many nines, again? (1)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737258)

Wasn't it supposed to act as a demo of Microsoft no longer being the crappiest platform around?

Re:How many nines, again? (3, Informative)

Thundersnatch (671481) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737362)

How many "nines" did Microsoft promise with their supposed reliability?

Zero for non-paid accounts. There is no SLA for free accounts, same as with gmail.

Anyway, this was not a technology failure, but the result of a Hotmail's inactivity policy. Which is clearly described on their site.

How to back up my Cloud mail? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34737268)

Okay then. I should back up my mails. Lesson learned.

But how? I want a tiny application that downloads all mail via POP and saves each mail as a single file, either TXT or EML. Or in a better format? What would be a good file format?

I want the app to sort things into folders in years, maybe in months, maybe even days.

Once I have everything in file and folder structure, I can back it up myself... in another The Cloud. Or on a thumbdrive.

The only thing missing is the name of the program and goooogling didn't dig something up. I use a redmondish OS. Ideas?

New Microsoft Live Hotmail (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737420)

Get it while it's hot!

Not Microsoft's first fuck-up with Hotmail (5, Informative)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737434)

When MS acquired Hotmail, they tried to move from BSD to Windows/IIS, and failed (back then, anyway) miserably. Then they poured shitloads of commercials and bling into the UI of Hotmail. Finally, they intorduced a rather draconian policy, whereby if you didn't access your account in 30 days, you were locked out. Since I hated the commercials and the bling, I had a hiatus in Hotmail use, and got locked out. I also could NOT re-create the same account name, even if nobody was using it. Anyhow, I was locked out until that day when an exploit ("hack") was discovered, with which anyone could access anyone else's account, without supplying a password. Does anyone remember those happy days? So, I "hacked" into my own account. And yes, the account was there, with all the e-mails. Why the lock-out policy? I dunno, one of the many brainfarts generating from MS.

I remember opening my colleague's account and calling him over, just to show him it was possible. That was the last day he ever used Hotmail.

It's a quiet revolution.. (1)

nanospook (521118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737472)

More and more as I use Facebook to communicate with my friends and associates.. I realize that email is becoming less important to me. Instead of someone coming out with a new system designed to "fix" the email system flaws, Facebook seems to be quietly supplanting it with a richer media based experience. Down the road I expect that I'll be able to have multiple layers on FB, for friends, associates, business.. so I can show what I want to those within a group..

Are they finally switching? (1)

MS (18681) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737498)

Hotmail startet on Solaris/*BSD-servers and was a charm to use... In January 1998 Microsoft bought Hotmail and tried to port everything to WindowsNT... In mid-2000 they finally started switching "some" of the frontend-servers from FreeBSD/Apache to Windows2000/IIS... Maybe now they are finally starting to port the database-servers also to Windows-HastaLaVista-New-Experience-Technology, so that's why data gets lost. :-)

It’s not a bug it’s a feature! (1)

redbeard55 (1002526) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737516)

It’s not a bug it’s a feature!

It’s a New Year and Microsoft has graciously given you a fresh clean start with your, I mean their email. No need to worry about the past . . . Embrace the new . . .

Yeah gotta love the cloud MS has been tokin up lately, I mean talking up lately.

OMG, think of the spam! (1)

whoop (194) | more than 3 years ago | (#34737540)

What will come of all the spam lost in this tragedy? It confounds me how email systems like Hotmail and Yahoo keep users with all the spam that comes through. Last year, I found the name/pass of a Hotmail account I made five or more years ago. I logged in to around 3k messages in the inbox. Amazing.

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