In this article
  • What Is Google Takeout?
  • Why Use Takeout?
  • What Can You Takeout
  • How to Export Data Using Google Takeout
  • Limitations of Google Takeout

How to Use Google Takeout for Business (Step-By-Step Guide)

8 Nov 2018
5 min read
Blog Articles

What Is Google Takeout?

For an IT administrator, Google Takeout – or Google Takeaway – is a simple and effective tool for downloading data from all the Google Applications associated with an account.
Google Takeout allows users to export their data as downloadable ZIP files. In a few steps, users can download or create an archive of their data stored on different Google apps, for record-keeping or for using it on other services.

Note: Downloading data using Google Takeout will not delete the data from Google’s servers.

In case you are a Google Workspace administrator wanting to export your organization data, check out How to Backup Google Drive Files for Your Business?

Why use Takeout?

A few things you can do using Takeout are:
1. Retaining the free version of Gmail while storing more data than what it allows
2. Creating space on your Google Drive by downloading and moving old files to a physical storage
3. Making copies of important files to store on other cloud services

What can you Takeout?

Google Takeout lists 47 different kinds of data, ranging from Gmail, Contacts, Calendar, and Google Keep Notes, to Photos, Hangouts and Google Search History.

For the complete list of data types – and the number of applications or data linked to each product – sign in to your Google account, then visit your Google Dashboard.

If you are looking to download only the Gmail data, check out these methods.

How to export data using Google Takeout

Note: To quickly access Google Takeout, click here and continue from the 5th step in the following procedure.

  1. Step 1: Log in to Gmail with your account credentials.

  2. Step 2: Click the Google Waffle next to your Gmail icon. Now select the “Account” option.

How to use google takeout
  1. Step 3: Click “Data & Personalization” from the menu bar on the left-hand side of the webpage.

Data and personalization
  1. Step 4: Scroll down to find “Download your data”. Select it.  

Download data using Google takeout
  1. Step 5: By default, All the Google products are selected for download. Click “Deselect all”.

How to use google takeout deselect
  1. Step 6:To select the products for downloading data, click on the check box next to the product names.

  1. Step 7: After selecting the applications you want to download, click on the “Next step” button.  

  1. Step 8: In the next step, select the following: 

1. Under the “Delivery method” you can choose to add the downloaded data to your Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, Box, or receive a link to the archive, in your email.
2. Under “Frequency of export” you can choose to export the files once or once every 2 months.
3. Under “File type & size,” you can choose between .zip or .tgz for the file type. After choosing all the options, click “Create export”.

Note: By default, the archive is downloaded as a zip file, with a  maximum size of 2 GB. If the size of your data archive is more than 2 GB, the archive will be broken down into as many 2 GB files as necessary. If you want to download all of your data as a single file, opt for the “.tgz” format, which can download the archive as a single zip file, with a size of up to 50 GB.

The time taken to create your archive will vary depending on the amount of data you’re trying to archive. The larger the files, the longer the download. If you’re downloading everything in your account from its inception, it could even take days to compile!

Once the archive is ready, you’ll receive an email notification or you can check the status on your Takeout page by selecting the “Manage exports” option.

  1. Step 9: Click the “Download” button next to the created archive.  

  1. Step 10: You can extract all the files after the download is complete.

    The root folder will have folders based on the services you have archived for download.  

Note: If you are wondering about how to use Google Takeout files, any archiving program – like 7-Zip and WinRAR – will be able to extract these files.

The folder will also have an “archive_browser.html”. Click the file to see the details of your export.  To see the list of files exported for a particular app, choose the application you want from the left-hand side panel and click “Exported files”. 

After the export process is completed, Google will retain the archived data for one week.

Limitations of Google Takeout

1. Google Takeout does not allow you to download files owned by someone else.
2. The folders that have been shared with you in Drive cannot be exported using Google Takeout, even if the folder has files created by you.

3. Google Takeout has a limit of 2 to 3 archives per day – Creating a Google Takeout archive for Gmail is limited to three attempts a day and up to seven per week.

4. Exporting data using Google Takeout can fail sometimes, making it an unreliable tool for backup.
5. Even with a .tgz format, the maximum limit for an archive download is 50 GB/day
6. You might end up with incomplete downloads while exporting larger files or folders.
7. You cannot create archives for multiple users at the same time. Only the account owner can create a Takeout archive. If an administrator needs to archive and download, the administrator should have login access to the particular user’s account to create the archive.
Sometimes, when an administrator tries to create an archive for users, Google Takeout may get disabled.
If internet access is lost, the download progress is interrupted and cannot be resumed. You will have to begin all over again! 
Get a complete backup solution instead!
A better way to backup Google Workspace apps would be to subscribe to a third-party backup service.

A backup solution like SysCloud gives Google Workspace administrators an easy option to maintain a backup copy of data for all the users on a secure cloud and restore the data directly into the user’s account. To know more about why backing up data is important, check here.

In this article
  • What Is Google Takeout?
  • Why Use Takeout?
  • What Can You Takeout
  • How to Export Data Using Google Takeout
  • Limitations of Google Takeout

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