1.An admin user registed a domain with google apps (email)
2.He has since disappeared of the face of the planet.
3.Can't access emails through Gmail.
4.Everytime I request a password reset it says contact administrator.

What the hek do I do? All information online is completely unhelpful!!!!!!!!

I don't get it. You are using Google Apps under a google domain you don't own or control?

Originally, this guy set up the website and domain and linked the emails to that domain with google apps. Not uncommon, I've done it with domains.

He has since vanished... now the domain owners want to administrate their email accounts, but we don't know the username and password he used for the admin account, nor can we contact him.

We're completely screwed. Any thoughts or ideas?

Have you tried contacting Google? I would imagine that they would be able to help if you can prove you own the domain. It would be as easy as creating a record in the DNS zone so they can see that the you own/manage the domain.

Contact google... Is it that easy, where do I go?

Convoluted process, but would this work ...

Suppose you own the domain iamthwee.com and some random AWOL person is currently managing the Google Apps account for iamthwee.com

Since you are the domain owner, you can edit the domain's MX record through your domain registrar and point all email for @iamthwee.com to somewhere other than Google.

Then, you can request a Google Apps password reset, and you'll actually get the password reset email because it will be pointing to somewhere under your control.

Then, you can choose to point it back to Google Apps should you so desire. But I would highly recommend hosted Microsoft Exchange instead :)

Sorry Dani, I didn't quite understand that. I know I can switch my domain's mx records to point to another mail server... but how does that overide gmail's db and more importantly gain me access to the emails stored on gmails server.

The company would still like to continue using gmail. Other than this password issue (which is really non-tech related) it has been working well.


Google's mail server has your email and maintains your administrator's account.

You can temporarily switch your domain to use a different mail server, so that you have access to future email. Then, ask Google to send you a lost password reset, and you'll be able to receive it. Reset the password for the Google Apps administrator account.

Then, switch your MX record back to Google Apps.

I believe the account was a free-non business apps account. Am I still eligible for support. Obviously I don't know the email password to raise a ticket! So it will have to be a phone call. Ugh this is such a pain in the ____

Dani how do I even contact google? I can't log into the account and since it was a non-business account am I even entitled to support? Telephone support that is? I guess I will have to try ringing the UK line tomorrow. Will let you know how I get on.

Also, I don't know if this is any use but the account I need access to is accessible on the client's iphone... So the initial password they entered on the iphone is correct. But I couldn't figure out any way to recover the actual password in plain text on their iphone so they can use the gmail account on their laptops/pcs!!

You will have a hell of a time proving you're supposed to have access to the account.
If I were Google and some pundit called me saying "please give me access to account xxxxxxxx, iamthwee set it up for me and then left without leaving the password" I'd be seriously suspicious.

True, but I do have access to the webdomain, so validation could happen by uploading a html to the root of the domain or adding a specific cname record.

I'm hoping...

Dani how do I even contact google?

You misunderstood me :( You don't need to.

Problem solved somehow managed to recover the guy's details and now I have ownership! Thanks to everyone who tried helping.

Glad you got it working without having to jump through too many hoops.