Anything like IFTTT for an email monitoring task?

I’m trying to sort of monitor a process at work. I can make it generate emails when it runs, and when it fails, but if there’s a way, I’d also like to be notified in some way when it hasn’t done anything at all for a certain period of time.

I’m not a developer, and don’t really have access to any servers or anything fancy that I could run a script on even if I knew how, and this isn’t really critical to anyone else, so I’m just trying to come up with work-arounds. So is there any way with some Gmail extension or other tool (I tried IFTTT but couldn’t find anything helpful) that I could trigger an email if no new emails have been received in, say, 2 hours?

Sorry, it just made me think of this:

It would be pretty simple to code something up that did that but I don’t know of anything off the top of my head.

I don’t know that Simpsons reference :(


You are looking for a tool that basically e-mails you every two hours if (and only if) it hasn’t sent you e-mails recently? For what purpose? If it were me, I would take the “no news is good news” approach, and if nothing is happening, then assume everything is still good.

Basically. I work for a printer, and there’s a section of our proofing workflow that’s automated for customers. If PDFs haven’t been processed recently during the workday, that’s a good indication that something’s wrong and some other part of the system has failed. The workflow is kind of a mess though, and we have almost no error reporting. There are very, very, slow plans in place to improve things, but in the mean time, for the part of the system I’m responsible for, I can generate emails every time a PDF gets processed, but that’s about the extent of my logging/reporting unless I’m actually watching the server.

So I have a dummy gmail account collecting emails, and if somebody shouts from the other side of the cube farm “I think the site is broken!”, I can open up that email and shout back “Hey, it’s been a couple hours since the last proof went out, maybe I should check on it” or “Nope, just sent a proof 2 minutes ago, this part’s working”. But usually if people are shouting that means a customer has already noticed a delay, and I’m trying to figure out band-aids until we can do some real work to improve this part of the system.

Typing this all out and rethinking it, another notification telling me “Hey, it’s been a little too quiet, don’t you think?” is probably going to generate more false positives than help, I’m just going nuts not being able to find a better way to handle this.

Now I’m just venting about work, but It’s a really, really fragile workflow, and at other points in the chain we’ve got really, really untechnical people, so it’s kind of my personal nightmare. I can see all the problems, but I don’t have the control or ability to fix them myself. Which would be one thing if we had more careful people like me aware of the limitations and logical in their problem solving, but that’s not the situation either, so there are days I’m pretty sure I’m the only one holding this stupid thing together.

ANYWAY. Thanks for anyone who listened, I’ll consider this thread a victory just for learning about the Everything’s OK Alarm.