Google Earth Community Forums Unavailable

[UPDATE 14-January: The GEC is back up as of 7 PM EDT]
For the past 4 days the Google Earth Community (GEC) server has been unavailable. This means the forums, which have over 1 million registered members and millions of others who read the messages, are completely inaccessible. Not only that, but hundreds of thousands of Google Earth KML files which are featured by web sites and blogs (like this one) around the world are hosted at the GEC. This also means the GEC layer won’t let you view the original messages/KMLs. Google runs the GEC. The BBS was originally licensed and run by Keyhole (the company which built the product which became Google Earth). And, that’s why the URL is Unfortunately, the BBS system the GEC was built on was never designed for such a large size. Over the last few years, Google has made several upgrades to handle the huge growth. But, apparently they ran in to some new limits. Over the last few days, when visiting the main GEC site, you get a message: “The Google Earth Community BBS is currently unavailable due to some maintenance. We are working very hard to bring the BBS back as soon as possible. We appreciate your patience.” Let’s hope the problem is resolved soon.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. As well as technical fixes so that there is access again to all the material hosted, does this call for a review of the content of these layers to help manage the pressure, and of the layer organisation itself?
    There is really useful stuff to be got, for example, via the [i] place marks, but the content is very undifferentiated, and frankly a lot is also unintelligible, bizarre, or of extreme specialist interest. Is it time for some Wiki style editing by the GEC?

  2. smokeonit says:

    not good news…!

  3. A total re-launch of the site with new software would be an ideal solution, removing the awful posting wizard in the process.
    Start again from scratch..with the emphasis on content.

  4. Masonicmoron says:
  5. Yep, we’re trying to keep ourselves busy over here at GE Help Groups while we’re on GEC vacation. It’s not easy, since one major requirement for even joining the GEC: “You don’t have a life.” Another is: “You don’t like doing anything productive.” I’ve been forced to do a couple of productive things.
    GE Community member

  6. This is now the sixth day that the GEC is down. What is happening? This looks like a major breakdown. Or is it a prelude to getting rid of the community completely?
    We deserve a better explanation. It can’t be ‘maintenance’. So what’s up?

  7. This is questionable. The “maintenance” came up with no previous indication of any type, and is taking too long. Usually you would do such a big upgrade offline, tell the users in advance, and put it online in a few hours. It is taking days.
    I bet a hacker was working hard…

  8. Does this have anything to do with the latest news that Google is shutting down quite a few of its products (Google Video etc.)?

  9. This is the latest comment on the GEC home page:-
    “Update 13-Jan-2009: We’re putting the finishing touches on the upgraded software and expect to be back very soon. Thanks for your patience!”
    So, as you can see, there’s no talk of the Community being closed down, and I think I would know if there was, as I’m one of the (volunteer) Moderators.
    Please bear in mind that the Community has thousands and thousands and thousands of members, as well as many, many, many thousands of posts which will need to be transferred to the new software – I’d rather wait for the move to be completed successfully, than have the forums back, but working at a reduced capacity.

  10. Masonicmoron says:
  11. It’s back up – come and play 🙂

  12. hi friends can u help me to sortout the problem,
    i have some points (UTM easting,northing coordinates), which are related to india.
    i want to create a line(path) on google earth by using these coordintes.
    pls help me on this regard..
    some of the points are like this,
    TP Nos UTM Easting(m) UTM Northing(m)
    P1/TP0 733183.88 3192607.95
    P10/TP1 732983.97 3193718.32
    kind regs,

  13. I saw my village through this Google Earth now it’s updated by Google on 22nd march 2010. thanks

  14. the issue was fixed already?

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