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Sending large files that are over the Gmail file size limit

Sending large files that are over the Gmail file size limit

min read

You can attach some pretty big files to an email in Gmail—but after 25 MB, you’ll have to get creative. In this article, we share everything there is to know about the Gmail file size limit and offer up a few ways to work around Google’s attachment restrictions.

<a href="#what-is-the-gmail-file-size-limit" class="anchor-link">What is the Gmail file size limit?</a>

  • <a href="#what-if-your-file-is-above-the-gmail-attachment-limit" class="anchor-link">What if your file is above the Gmail attachment limit?</a>
  • <a href="#the-gmail-file-size-limit-vs-other-email-providers" class="anchor-link">The Gmail file size limit vs. other email providers</a>

<a href="#how-to-get-around-the-gmail-attachment-size-limit" class="anchor-link">How to get around the Gmail attachment size limit</a>

  • <a href="#1-best-for-casual-use-send-large-files-in-google-drive" class="anchor-link">1. [Best for casual use] Send large files in Google Drive</a>
  • <a href="#2-best-for-teams-send-and-organize-large-files-with-streak" class="anchor-link">2. [Best for teams] Send and organize large files with Streak</a>
  • <a href="#3-best-for-sending-file-folders-compress-your-files" class="anchor-link">3. [Best for sending file folders] Compress your files</a>
  • <a href="#4-best-for-heavy-files-use-a-third-party-file-transfer-service" class="anchor-link">4. [Best for heavy files] Use a third-party file transfer service</a>

<a href="#final-thoughts-on-sending-large-files-in-gmail" class="anchor-link">Final thoughts on sending large files in Gmail</a>
<a href="#gmail-file-size-limit-faqs" class="anchor-link">Gmail file size limit: FAQs</a>

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What is the Gmail file size limit?

As I mentioned earlier, the attachment size limit in Gmail is 25 MB. This applies to the entire email. So whether you send one file or ten, the total size can't exceed 25 MB. 

There's a caveat with this though: the 25 MB limit assumes you're using the latest version of the Gmail app on your mobile device or using a browser that supports the full web version. The functional size limit may vary in different situations. This might be the case if you visit Gmail in a mobile browser instead of using the app, for example.

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What if your file is above the Gmail attachment limit?

If you attach a file larger than 25 MB in Gmail, you'll notice Gmail automatically starts uploading it to your Google Drive and will then add a Google Drive link to your attachment.

A screenshot where we attach a file larger than 25MB, therefore we use a Google Drive link

This works most of the time. But in some cases, Gmail might not be able to automatically create a Google Drive link. If you’re using an older version of Gmail on your phone or if the type of file can't be compressed in the app, you’ll run into problems here. Gmail also blocks certain file types like .exe or others that are likely to contain malicious programs.

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The Gmail file size limit vs. other email providers

Gmail isn't the only email provider that limits the size of attachments. Email providers aren't meant to be cloud storage services, so virtually all of them have some sort of attachment size limit. 

Below are a few other popular providers and their email file size limits. You’ll see they are fairly similar to the Gmail file size limit.

  • AOL Mail: 25 MB
  • iCloud Mail: 20 MB standard, up to 5 GB with Mail Drop feature
  • Outlook: 20 MB
  • Protonmail: 25 MB
  • Yahoo Mail: 25 MB
  • Zoho Mail: 20 MB for personal users, up to 1 GB for paid users

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How to get around the Gmail attachment size limit

Whether you want to share large files with your colleagues at work or simply need to send a bigger file to your friends or family members, there are multiple ways to bypass the attachment limit in Gmail. We'll cover a few easy options here.

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1. [Best for casual use] Send large files in Google Drive

If you need to send large files via Gmail occasionally, then using Google Drive is a great solution. You can upload the file (or files) you’d like to send to your Google Drive to sort them into folders and then copy the links, or you can simply attach the files to your email, and you’ll get automatic links. 

The potential downside to this is that it can become tricky to send large files through Gmail regularly and still keep your Drive organized. Gmail uploads attached files to your Google Drive at the top level, not a specific folder. So if you’re frequently attaching large files and just hitting Send, it’s easy for files to get lost in the shuffle of your Google Drive or create unnecessary clutter. Also, if the recipient wants to view or download the attachment later, they'll have to open up that original email thread.

<div class="anchor-wrapper"><div id="2-best-for-teams-send-and-organize-large-files-with-streak" class="anchor-target"></div></div>

2. [Best for teams] Send and organize large files with Streak

If you use Gmail at your company and frequently share files over email, Streak is a great option. Streak is a simple CRM in Gmail that helps 750k+ people organize their pipelines. With Streak, you can upload and send larger files with ease to collaborators. They can see the files in their Streak dashboard (within Gmail) at any time and can add tasks, comments, notes, and more.

A screenshot where we are sending a large file using Streak in Gmail

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3. [Best for sending file folders] Compress your files

If you want to send multiple large documents or video files at once and keep things organized, you can compress the files into a zipped folder, and upload that one, condensed folder to Gmail. 

Sending large file folders with Windows:

  1. Highlight a file, group of files, or a folder.
  2. Right-click on the selection.
  3. Select Send To then Compressed (zipped) folder.
  4. Upload this zipped folder as the Gmail attachment.

Sending large file folders on a Mac:

  1. Highlight a file, group of files, or a folder.
  2. Control-click on the selection.
  3. Click Compress.

In many cases, you can use this compress option on your computer to bypass Gmail's attachment size limit. However, keep in mind that there’s no way to choose the file size of the zipped folder, so very, very large files might not ever compress to a small enough size.

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4. [Best for heavy files] Use a third-party file transfer service

There are a few other options that might better suit your needs if you frequently have to send large or sensitive files that need encryption or nuanced security measures. Cloud storage options include Dropbox and Proton Drive. File transfer protocol (FTP) vendors offer similar functionality and include FileZilla and Cyberduck. Different options offer different levels of security and functionality, so if you’re sharing heavy files often, be sure to do your research on which solution would be best.

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Final thoughts on sending large files in Gmail

At the end of the day, there are many ways you can send attachments that go beyond the file size limit of 25 MB. You can use a Google Drive link, trust Streak for collaboration, compress multiple large files, or use a large file-sharing service. Good luck!

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Gmail file size limit: FAQs

Below are a few frequently asked questions about the Gmail file size limit.

What is the file size limit for Gmail in 2023?

The maximum file size for an attachment in Gmail is 25 MB. This is the total size, so you can upload multiple attachments as long as the maximum size doesn’t exceed 25 MB. 

How do I bypass the file size limit in Gmail?

One way to send large files in Gmail is to upload files to Google Drive and send the sharing links. You can also use Streak to upload files to specific projects or prospects and collaborate with team members.

How can I send a video more than 100 MB in Gmail?

You can't directly attach a video of over 100 MB in Gmail. If you try, Gmail uploads it to Google Drive first and then includes a link to the drive file. You can upload it to the drive yourself, or use other cloud storage programs and send a link to your recipient.

How do I attach a large file in Gmail?

The easiest way to send large files in Gmail is to simply attach the file and let Gmail upload it as a Google Drive link. Alternatively, you can upload files individually to your Google Drive. Gmail gives you the option to add files from your drive in mobile and desktop versions.

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