How to download all your personal data from Google+

It seems that Google+ is gone forever. The company's attempt at a social network has not met with the expected success, and as with all Google products that do not meet expectations, it will receive the rest of the righteous very soon. In principle it had been announced for August of this year, but after knowing certain security leaks on the platform, the date has been advanced to the imminent April 2.

For people like me, who have lived there for almost five years, the closure can be a bit traumatic. I have never liked Facebook too much and I have not been able to get the hang of Twitter either, so we have to think about where we are going to go now that the ship is sinking hopelessly.

Meanwhile, we have no choice but to pack our bags and keep the most significant memories. Next, we take a look at how we can download all those data that we have accumulated during all this time on Google+.

How to download all our Google+ data step by step

To keep a copy of the photos, posts, comments and others that we have accumulated in the social network we will use the official Google Takeout exporter. From this page we can download a backup of all our activity in any of Google's products, including Google+ data.

There are also other third-party tools like Google+ Exporter, but we'll stick with the official solution, as it works reasonably well for everything we want to do today.

  • First, we access Google Takeout.
  • By default, the tool is activated to download data from all Google products (Maps, Drive, Keep, Gmail, Chrome, etc.). First of all, we will click on the button "DO NOT SELECT NONE”.
  • Now, we will activate the tab, one by one, of all the Google+ components that we want to download (a little further down, we explain what each of these blocks contains).
  • Some components have a drop-down menu that allows us to choose file format that we are going to download. For example, Google+ circles can be downloaded in JSON, CSV, HTML or vcard format.

  • When we have activated all the tabs that interest us, click on the button "FOLLOWING”.
  • Finally, Google offers us 3 options for the delivery of the data:
    • Type of file: The data will be delivered in compressed format. We can choose between a ZIP or TGZ file.
    • File size: By default, if the data exceeds 2GB, Google will divide it into multiple compressed files.
    • Method of delivery: We can choose to have the data sent to us through a download link to our email account or upload the data to the cloud (Google Drive, Dropbox, Box or OneDrive).

  • To finish, click on "CREATE FILE".

From this point, depending on the activity that we have developed in Google Plus, the file will take more or less time to be available. Be careful, because this process can take hours if our activity has been very high.

When the copy is ready to be downloaded we will receive an email with a message like this.

Read the message carefully, because it can happen to you like me: some files have not been backed up, so I will have to make another backup if I want to have everything in good condition.

What data should we download from Google+?

As I mentioned a little above, we are going to detail which are the tabs that we have to activate to download all the information that we have been uploading to Google+, such as photos, comments, posts and others.

  • +1 Google+ on websites: A list in HTML format with links to all the web pages and blogs on which we have +1.
  • Google+ circles: A list in JSON, CSV, HTML or vcard format with information from our Google+ contacts (first name, last name, nickname, display name and profile URL).
  • Google+ Communities: Only works with communities where we are moderators or owners. Get names and links to profiles of moderators, members, applicants, owners, banned members, and community guests. It also provides a list with links to publications shared in the community and some metadata (community image, categories, etc.).
  • Google+ news: This is probably the most important section. This is where all of our personal contributions are collected.
    • Photos shared in posts and comments.
    • All posts we have created, including comments and +1 to other posts.
    • Collections we have created.
    • All the events that we have created or to which we have been invited.

Google+ may have been a failure at the business level, and that very few people used it on a regular basis is a more than palpable reality. This was not Facebook. However, they had managed to forge some really powerful communities with high quality content, and their interface was the cleanest and most fluid that we could find on the Internet. What are we going to do ... Goodbye, Google Plus. May the Force be with you.

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