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Gmail is the university's default email system for students. It is a cloud-based service that provides email, built-in instant messaging (including voice and video chat), mobile access, spam and virus protection.

Faculty, staff, and postdocs are initially set up with Outlook but have the option to use Gmail instead. Here's how to activate your Google Workspace account. Students: You have the option to use Outlook instead of Gmail. Read why you might want to consider doing so.

Accessing Email

  • Email software: Accessed by a web browser or Gmail app on your Android, iOS, Macintosh, or Windows device.
  • Deleted Items retention: Messages remain in your Deleted Items folder for 30 days and are then automatically deleted.

Important Size Limits

These limits vary based on many factors. The numbers below reflect what most individuals will need for day-to-day email use. For more details, refer to Google Workspace Mailbox (Gmail) Limits.

  • Mailbox size: 15 GB. This includes email, attachments, deleted items, and documents stored in Drive.
  • Message size limit: 50 MB (total size including attachments). The limit applies to both outgoing and incoming messages. 
  • Maximum number of attachments on a single message: 500

If you need to share a file over this size limit use one of the File Storage services available at Cornell. All of these options allow you to share links to files.

Limits on Sending Very Large Mailings

  • Maximum number of unique addresses allowed in the To:, Cc:, and Bcc: fields (combined): 3,000 per day
  • Maximum number of messages that can be sent per day: 2,000

Alternatives for Very Large Mailings

Service Details:


As part of the Google Workspace suite of programs, Gmail provides email and calendaring services for the Cornell community.


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