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Gmail 30GB storage limit reached but can't find cause
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Gmail 30GB storage limit reached but can't find cause

A friend of mine has Google Workspace basic with 30GB gmail. She's not using photos or Drive so the storage totals has all gmail around ~30GB and nothing for drive and photos. She's getting the 30GB storage limit warnings and deleting old mail isn't helping.

In outlook desktop, the PST file when exported was only 17GB.

When I did a Takeout at the start, the zip was 17GB and that unzipped to 30GB. I've archived more years and now it's down to something like 10TB. The Google export showed this as also 17GB zipped, so that's interesting. Most attachments are pdfs.

It'll take some hours to transfer the zip and open the mbox file, but after that I'm not sure how to track down the size. But it seems that the mbox is likely to be 30GB still.

My current guess is that this is label related, causing duplicates?

Prior to doing anything, Outlook showed that there was a gmail orphaned mailbox. Removing the account in Outlook and readding it didn't return. Googling, sounded like a gmail-apple issue, and I know she uses iPhone, but didn't mention anything about seeing an orphaned mailbox. But I wonder if this is something from using iPhone Mail app and gmail on iPhone app? She's away for the weekend so I can't check.

At some point, I think I might need Google customer support, but I've found them to be nearly useless in the past.

Anyone know of any good mbox utilities to figure out what is using up the space and how to get rid of it? The viewer I have now doesn't seem to show folder or label structure, just ~65k messages in a single box.


  • @TimboJones said: label related, causing duplicates

    Labels are tags on a single stored email - so space will not be duplicated.

    Did you check trash? Deleted mails sit there for ~30 days - so you may have to empty trash to recover space.

    Also, force a (hard) reload of the Gmail page - only then will you see the updated space used (caching is sometimes a nuisance).

    Thanked by 1Logano
  • Sort by email size..?

  • Like @nullnothere said, double check the simple stuff? I think I had to clear out my Trash once, years ago before I started paying Google.

    Thanked by 1nullnothere
  • Visit this page and login.

    This will list Google services and disk used by that service.

  • You can search for large messages like this:

  • FYI,

    Had to contact Google Support. Overall, there's a problem that when email is archived in Outlook desktop to remove the emails and store in offline PST file, gmail was just removing the Inbox label and putting them under an "Archived" label that shows up in MBOX but not webmail or imap folders. Basically trapping them in no man's land. They should have gone to Trash instead.

    There's also an "Opened" label eating up gigs of space. And several more Categories and labels in the mbox not in webmail. I might have to see if imapsync can see them and then I can fix myself instead of waiting on Google.

    The support agent was supposed to escalate to engineers and send transcript within 20 minutes, but he didn't. He confirmed my email address on the phone, but I can only assume he fucked that up and I'll need to wait in a queue to chat again and get some communication tracking going.

    Thanked by 1bdl
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