Receiving limits

To keep our systems healthy and your accounts safe, all Google Apps accounts limit the amount of email a user can receive per minute, hour, and day. Setting up the account to receive frequent automated messages, such as log files, increases the likelihood of reaching the limits.

If an account reaches the limit, a user cannot receive any new email and may experience general account degradation, such as slow searching. All incoming messages are bounced or deferred back to the sender.

User locked out of their account? Google Apps administrators can check the Users section of your Google Apps Admin console to find details on which limits were reached and when access will be restored. In some cases, an administrator can reset the Gmail suspension.

The following table shows limits for different time periods. These limits apply for Google Apps for Work or Education editions. The value of these limits may change without notice in order to protect Google’s infrastructure.

Description All email addressed to the account; may appear as threaded and non-threaded Gmail conversations
Per minute 60
Per hour 3,600
Per day 86,400

How long does a suspension last?

If an account reaches a receiving limit, the restriction on receiving new mail typically lasts for about 24 hours. After this period, receiving limits are automatically reset and the user can resume receiving mail. After an account is reset, a user cannot recover any messages sent to the account during the restricted period.


Best practices to avoid reaching a receiving limit:

  • Send message logs and automated emails to Google Groups. Using Groups, you can use a web interface to read very large or frequently mailed announcements that quickly hit the receiving limits of your email account. Sending automated emails to a Groups account will reduce the receiving load on your email account and allow you to take advantage of the receiving limits for both email and Groups.
  • Avoid using a single account for multiple users, and use Google Groups for sharing mail. Map 10 or fewer email aliases per account. Use groups to create shared mailboxes or to allow many people to send and receive mail with a single address.
  • Subscribe to the daily digest forms of heavily trafficked email lists.
  • Avoid using catch-all accounts. Spammers often try to guess email addresses in your domain. When they guess incorrectly, the spam is delivered to the catch-all address. The high mail volume can quickly exceed the Gmail receiving limits.
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