2 min

Google Drive users were left frustrated and confused when they discovered a hidden file limit on their accounts, causing them to be locked out of new file uploads. The issue was first reported in February by users who received a message telling them to delete two million files to continue using their accounts.

However, only in March was the message updated to indicate that accounts had exceeded the creation limit of five million items.

The limit, which applies to both Google Workspace and Google One accounts, was rolled out without warning and has yet to be documented anywhere.

Google is weirdly silent about all this

While Google Drive has a file-sharing limit of 400,000 files, the 5 million total file cap is a significant hindrance for users who have paid for storage. Even Google One’s top-tier 30TB plan costs $150 per month and can be used quickly by just 5 million 4KB files.

Some users have claimed that they received confirmation from Google Support that the limit is intended, but Google has not issued a public response. The company has not provided any tools for users to monitor their file usage and has not made any effort to inform customers about the limit.

The lack of communication and transparency from Google is particularly surprising for its Workspace business customers, who expect a more stable version of Google’s services.

Users deserve to know more

A Google spokesperson confirmed to tech publication Ars-Technica that the file limit is “a safeguard to prevent misuse of our system in a way that might impact the stability and safety of the system.”

However, they also clarified that the limit applies to “how many items one user can create in any Drive,” not a total cap for all files in a drive.

Despite Google’s claims that the limit does not affect most users, the lack of warning and documentation has understandably caused frustration among paying customers. Google’s failure to properly communicate the change and provide tools for users to monitor their file usage is inexcusable.

Also read: Google expands use of generative AI in Google Cloud and Workspace