Google Drive Failure Comes to a Head

If you know someone with the +Google Drive team that would like to help me resolve this and convince me that +Chris Roggenbuck is an anomaly in the Google Drive support team, PLEASE either forward this post, point them to the public link or contact me with their name. I will be discreet about the source. Chris

Now TRYING (so far unsuccessfully) to resync 52GB of data (more than 97,000 files)  with #googledrive  because it's unstable and their "support" is of no help.

MUST do this despite having ALL 52GB of that data local already because of a "random" error they refuse to even try to resolve because according to them, "format and reinstall" is the first step in the debugging process.

Needless to say, this is just to keep my business running until I find a betters solution and I plan the painful migration of my services AND my customers to that new service.

#majorfail  on Google's part and I can't understand how they're willing to leave it at this. Too bad I don't know anyone on the #googledrive  team. I know a number of people on the +Google Chrome team that would never let things come to this point. If I can't trust Google Drive, then I really can't rely any of the Google "Enterprise" services.

Looking at ongoing issues (18 months old) such as the following, I guess I shouldn't be surprised: https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!msg/drive/KyzWVscb7iE/8oK5NmjAId0J

At least I learned sooner than later. How incredibly disappointing in so many ways.

Favorite quotes from this 5 week long "support" ticket (still unresolved AND they closed it on me)

Explanation of issue: "I have investigated your issue and reviewed the logs from your Drive Sync Client, but I have not pinpointed the reason for your inoperable database. The snapshot.db database can encounter issues of this kind if you are trying to sync a large amount of files at once" Really? "Large amount of files at once"!?

Troubleshooting steps, format and reinstall: "From one of the affected computers, can you please fully uninstall the Drive Sync Client and subsequently remove the Drive folder ...  After the Sync Client has been removed, please download and install the latest version of the Client... Please let me know the result of these actions Michael, and then I can continue this investigation." They closed the ticket on me because I wouldn't FIRST delete 52GB of data (97,000+ files) with an unknown amount of unsynced data and try again.

Their next explanation:  _"Your snapshot.db, which is critical to the operation of the Google Drive Sync Client, failed to open from your disk"_ See the photo below for proof it's just plain wrong. I also used ProcessMonitor from sysinternals to confirm ABSOLUTELY that googledrivesync.exe is successfully opening snapshot.db. Still, this is the final analysis they stood on.

I provided the .db files while on the initial call (using Drive ironically) and by Nov. 11th, I had also provided all other files from the Drive folder.


+Google Developers 

UPDATE 20131201: I've found and resolved the issue entirely on my own, without ANY assistance from Google and as my evidence demonstrated, it had NOTHING to do with an inaccessible snapshot.db

Through various tests largely driven by frustration, I found that even after I wiped by Drive data folder (not my synced files, but the one containing snapshot.db) and signing in again, the files were rebuilt but I still couldn't sync and Drive kept crashing; as in "The application attempted in an invalid operation" Windows crash, not a proper, handled exception. I started to suspect the issue was actually network related even though I was sure that Google would have seen something in logs on either side to clue us in. I fired up my favorite network sniffer tools and after a lot of investigating that I couldn't replicate to save my life (I operate largely on intuition), I stumbled on something that reminded me of an oddity I noticed once well over a year ago and I tried to right-click in the Drive authentication window.

What I discovered shed much light on the possibilities. Despite having Chrome installed both in the past and now, on multiple machines, Drive uses IE to authenticate. Since Chrome respects the substancially annoying "Internet Explorer Control Panel" settings such as security zones, I started suspecting that Drive's use of IE was the root of my issue and I was right. I had to modify my companies Group Policy to create an exception targeting my machine so that the limited list of trusted domains was no longer an issue (I was explicitly set to very few company domains). After GP synced across our domain controllers and a "gpupdate /force" was run and my machine rebooted, I could suddenly get Drive to sync so I killed DriveSync, restored my Drive data folder then relaunched drive and behold! Drive not only ran (instead of crashing from an unhandled exception) but it was identifying differences and synchronizing again.

In summary, the issue was that Drive obeys IE security settings and our company takes security seriously so I had to make my system insecure in order to get Drive to do ANYTHING (read, "not crash poorly"). So there you have it, Drive is missing a VERY SIMPLE and seemingly obvious TRY.. CATCH block to determine if Google servers are accessible in the context needed for Drive to function. Now I have to do some more sniffing to determine exactly what FQDNs are required for Drive to function so I can restore a secure configuration and remove the exception for my machine.

So Google failed with their code. Google failed to provide any sort of real support (I DID offer direct access to the problematic machine multiple times). Google logging didn't help even the "advanced" support staff which does make sense since the code wasn't smart enough to even check (how could it log a condition it wasn't checking for). I lost HOURS of work trying to do Google's job for them WHILE paying for the service that wasn't working and while trying to simultaneously keep my customers satisfied.

+Google Developers and +Chris Roggenbuck , how did so many avoidable failures occur? After YEARS now (it seems anyway) or struggling with Google Drive and "Google Apps for Enterprise", I now have to believe that paying is pointless as it only sets me up to buy into a service that should be free given the instability and lack of support.

At this point, the only way Google could make matters worse is to fail to acknowledge me, my situation, and the solution I just handed them. If you [the person reading this] are in agreement with me about any of this, PLEASE forward this post on and help me get some attention so that we can ensure Google is listening and that they provide some reply indicating they actually care about their paying customers; especially those who have lost credibility by recommending others use Google services. I can understand bugs, but with a response as I saw here, there's clearly a much larger underlying issue and it's likely the reason for the bug; a lack of real concern of value of their customers.
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