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Google Drive discreetly limited file creation for everyone.

Photo: Google Drive

According to Ars Technica and CNET, Google has secretly limited Drive’s file creation and storage. The business told The Verge that even with more capacity, Drive allows 5 million files.

The 5 million file restriction applies to files you generate in Drive, not shared files. So you can have over 5 million files in the system if they’re not yours.

Google spokesperson Ross Richendrfer said the adjustment would “maintain great performance and reliability” and avoid “misuse” of the company’s servers. Richendrfer says you’ll be notified and may contact Google support if you hit the limit.

Some people have uploaded 5 million files, which seems ludicrous. In February, Google blocked a Drive user with 7 million files from adding new files, according to a Reddit post noticed by Ars Technica and CNET. Other Google issue tracker users indicate they encountered the file cap around the same time and thought it was a glitch.

According to the Reddit thread, someone with 2TB of storage and an average file size above 400KB will exceed their file limit before running out of capacity. So, some users may be paying for more storage than they need without zipping their data.

According to customers’ comments, Google didn’t notify individuals affected by the increased restriction before it took effect, forcing them to move or compress redundant data. Google’s Google One and Workspace help pages don’t mention the restriction, although they say shared Workspace storage can hold 400,000 files. Even if most don’t, Google could’ve warned users with 5 million Drive files.

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