Here’s how to save your photos before Google deletes them

Jun 22, 2023

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

Here’s how to save your photos before Google deletes them

Jun 22, 2023

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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There’s less than a month left before Google deletes your photos from its archives. As a part of Google’s new policy, Album Archive will no longer be available – which means your photos and other data will disappear. But you can still save them, so let’s check out how before it’s too late.

[Related reading: Google is preparing to delete your photos]

What’s happening?

In a recent blog post, Google also shared an update regarding its policies on inactive accounts. As per the update, Google will remove photos from inactive accounts from December 2023 onwards. But what’s an “inactive account”? According to Google’s rules, it’s any account that hasn’t been accessed for two years. This particular change won’t affect you if you use Google Photos regularly. But if you have older or backup accounts, may lose your stored images.

After July 19, 2023, the Google Album Archive will not be available any longer. After Google retired Picasa in 2016, all your content from there was moved to Google Archive. But now that’s being canceled too, and you need to download your data before July 19. Google says it may also delete accounts and data from Google Workspaces, Gmail Docs, Drive, Meet, and Calendar.

So, how do I save my data?

Log in to Google Photos regularly

The fix is pretty simple for data other than photos. If you own an old/inactive account, just go and log in! The same goes for Google Photos: make sure that you log in at least once every two years in order to avoid your images being deleted.

For Google Album Archive, it’s a little more complex since the service is being shut down. But fear not; it’s still not that hard.

Saving data from Google Album Archive

To save your media from Google Album Archive before it’s deleted, use Google Takeout. Click on the link to take you to a Google Takeout page where you can download your data.

Google Takeout also reminds you to download your data from Google Album Archive

From here on, it’s pretty straightforward and intuitive, in my opinion. Google will offer you to select which data you want to download, so make sure to check AlbumArchive.

In the next step, you can choose file type, the frequency of data export, and the destination. Once that’s done, click “Create export” and that’s it. Google notes that “the process can take a long time (possibly hours or days) to complete,” and it will send you an email when it’s done. I had exactly zero data in my archive so I got the email immediately, though. It contains a link that leads you to your zipped archive, ready to download.

Okay, now that we’ve sorted this out, go and download your data before it’s too late, and share this friendly reminder with your friends.

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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One response to “Here’s how to save your photos before Google deletes them”

  1. enchalta Avatar
    enchalta

    Question: Is logging in to any Google service (Gmail only, or Drive only) considered as active? Or should I log in to every service I have?