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How to back up, restore WhatsApp chats via Google Drive, local storage

Here’s how you can back up your WhatsApp data using Google Drive or local storage.

tech Updated: Dec 26, 2017 13:40 IST
Kul Bhushan
Don’t want to lose your WhatsApp messages when switching to a new smartphone? Here’s what you need to do.
Don’t want to lose your WhatsApp messages when switching to a new smartphone? Here’s what you need to do.(REUTERS)

One of the common problems that WhatsApp users face is losing chat data when switching to a new smartphone. Fortunately, WhatsApp gives Android users an option to back up their chat on Google Drive.

It allows you to not only back up text but also multimedia such as images, videos and GIFs. If you’re planning to follow any of the below tips, you should ensure you’re connected to Wi-Fi. This is essentially to make sure the back up and restore processes are faster.

Since your backup files may have a lot of multimedia, you may end up spending mobile data. If you have enough mobile data or are in good network area, you’re good to go.

How to back up WhatsApp chats on Google Drive

WhatsApp gives Android users three options to back up your data. You can choose between “back up to Google Drive when you tap back up’, ‘back up only over Wi-Fi’ and ‘include videos’.

In order to back up, launch WhatsApp, click on the three dots on the top right corner, choose Settings, chats, chat backups. You can choose between above mentioned options to back up your WhatsApp chats.

If you want to just export your chats, which is just email it to yourself, tap on chats > chat history > email chats > choose the chat window you wish to back up.

How to restore WhatsApp chats from Google Drive

Now that you have backed up your WhatsApp chats, and downloaded and installed WhatsApp on a new device, here’s what you need to do.

Launch WhatsApp > Set up your profile (verify the phone number, etc) and tap next.

WhatsApp will prompt you to restore your messages from the linked Google account. Just tap Restore, Next and you’re done.

How to create, restore local backup of WhatsApp chats

WhatsApp categorically recommends Android users to back up on Google Drive, but you can also create a local backup of your messages.

“The easiest way to transfer data to a new phone is by using Google Drive. If you want to use a local backup, you will need to transfer the files to the new phone using a computer, file explorer or an SD Card. If your data is not stored on the SD card/WhatsApp/folder, you may see “internal storage” or “main storage” folders,” WhatsApp explains on its website.

If you want to restore a local backup (which has just seven days of data), download File Manager app from Google Play store.

Launch File Manager app > choose SD card > WhatsApp > Databases. If you don’t have an SD card, choose internal storage or main storage.

“Rename the backup file you wish to restore from msgstore-YYYY-MM-DD.1.db.crypt12 to msgstore.db.crypt12. It is possible that an earlier backup may be on an earlier protocol, such as crypt9 or crypt10. Do not change the number of the crypt extension,” according to WhatsApp.

Now, you may uninstall WhatsApp application. Reinstall the app whenever you want to and tap restore while setting up to get all your data back.