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I use the free edition of Google Apps to handle mail for one of my domains, say foo.com. I have set up a custom subdomain called mail.foo.com for the domain users to read their mail at. (That’s a standard Google Apps feature.) Recently this domain stopped working – when I run traceroute on the domain the packets simply get lost somewhere in the Google’s network:

10  google-118152-ffm-b7.c.telia.net (213.248.102.234)  25.478 ms  27.971 ms
    google-ic-120086-ffm-b7.c.telia.net (80.239.193.138)  31.644 ms
11  72.14.238.46 (72.14.238.46)  29.284 ms  82.576 ms  24.265 ms
12  * * *

What am I doing wrong?

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I have found the problem. In order for the custom URL to work, I had to create a CNAME record for mail.foo.com. As my domain hoster’s administration interface only permits me to use an IP address for the CNAME record, I had used the IP address of ghs.googlehosted.com at that time. Apparently the address has changed lately, and the old one no longer works. After updating the CNAME record to the new IP address of ghs.googlehosted.com the service is back online.

  • Are you absolutely sure you cannot use ghs.googlehosted.com as the value for the CNAME record? Sounds strange. Some DNS admin GUIs requires you to append a . to the end of a value: ghs.googlehosted.com. In the current state, you will be vulnerable the next time Google decides to move ghs.googlehosted.com to a new IP address. – Vidar S. Ramdal Jan 11 '13 at 9:31
  • Unfortunately yes, the web interface insists on having a “valid IPv4 address”. It’s not a big deal for me to update if the Google’s machine moves again. – zoul Jan 11 '13 at 10:43
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If you didn't change anything on your side recently, then it should not be a problem that you can handle yourself. If the problem persists after a few days, do contact Google and inform them about it using the Google Feedback tool available within the Google Apps domain control panel.

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