8155 characters

How to Download your personal data from the cloud

Your personal data is often spread out across various cloud servers and this page contains notes on how to get your data back off the cloud servers to your local PC.

Before you begin - make sure you are doing this on your own home computer (ie don't do it at work or in a public place) as there is sensitive information which you don't want others seeing.
Also, make sure you have enough space.

Downloading your data from various services


Get your photos and posts by going to Facebook homepage and click the drop down arrow to get to "General Account Settings"
Click the "Your Facebook information" link in the left hand pane - https://www.facebook.com/settings?tab=your_facebook_information
Then in the middle of the screen click in the section "Download your information"

You will be asked for the format - if you just want to look at the data easily leave the default as HTML, but you won't get as much information this way - for a complete download, choose JSON format (in fact, why not just download both formats if you are unsure)

Responsive image

The list of things you can download are
Posts = Posts you've shared on Facebook, posts that are hidden from your timeline and polls you have created
Photos and videos = Photos and videos that you've uploaded and shared
Comments = Comments you've posted on your own posts, on other people's posts or in groups that you belong to
Likes and reactions = Posts, comments and Pages that you've liked or reacted to
Friends = The people you are connected to on Facebook
Following and followers = People, organisations or business that you choose to see content from, and people who follow you
Messages = Messages you've exchanged with other people on Messenger
Groups = Groups you belong to, groups you manage, and your posts and comments within the groups that you belong to
Events = Your responses to events and a list of the events that you've created
Profile information = Your contact information, information that you've written in your 'About you' section in your profile and your life events
Pages = Pages you are the admin of
Marketplace = Your activity on Marketplace
Payment history = A history of payments that you've made through Facebook
Saved items = A list of the posts that you've saved
Your places = A list of places you've created
Apps and websites = Apps and websites you log in to using Facebook and apps that you are an admin for
Other activity = Activity associated with your account, such as pokes given and received
Ads = Ads topics that are most relevant to you, advertisers who have collected information directly from you and information that you've submitted to advertisers
Search history = A history of your searches on Facebook
Location history = A history of precise locations received through location services on your device
Calls and messages = Logs of your calls and messages that you've chosen to share in your device settings
About you = Information associated with your Facebook account
Security and login information = A history of your logins, logouts, periods of time that you've been active on Facebook and the devices that you use to access Facebook.


There is a *lot* of stuff you get when you export your Google data, so I'll say it again, do NOT export this at any computer except your own home PC - it contains your gmail archive, any Google docs you have, your location history and everything you ever searched for.
Go to your Google account https://myaccount.google.com and login as yourself.

Expand the "Personal info & privacy > " and scroll down to the "Control your content" section.
There will be a link under "Download your data" called CREATE ARCHIVE https://takeout.google.com/settings/takeout

Responsive image

This takes you to a very long list of things you can export (all on by default)

+1s	 (likes on Google Plus)
Android Device configuration service	
Classic Sites	
Cloud Print	
Data Shared For Research	
G Suite Marketplace	
Google Help Communities	
Google My Business	
Google Pay	
Google Photos	
Google Play Books	
Google Play Console	
Google Play Games Services	
Google Play Movies & TV	
Google Play Music	
Google Play Store	
Google Shopping	
Google+ Circles	
Google+ Communities	
Google+ Stream	
Hangouts on Air	
Home App	
Input Tools	
Location History	
Maps (your places)	
My Activity	
My Maps	
Posts on Google	
Purchases & Reservations	
Search Contributions	
Street View	


Go to https://twitter.com/ and click the top right icon of your profile picture.
Choose "Settings and privacy" from the menu. On the left hand pane, choose "Your Twitter data" near the bottom (it will ask for your password to confirm). You then see the Account details, including their assumption of your age and gender

Responsive image

To download your data, scroll right to the bottom and click the "Request Data" button and wait for the email. While there, also click the "Request advertiser list" to see what data is linked there.


There isn't a way (as at Nov 2018) to download all your reddit data in one go. If you have a legal requirement under the GDPR (General Data Protection act) you can try emailing legal@reddit.com , otherwise you can download the things you've posted on reddit from this link

The reddit help page provides links to the various areas such as

Posts you have submitted = https://www.reddit.com/user/me/submitted
Comments you have submitted = https://www.reddit.com/user/me/comments
Your private messages = https://www.reddit.com/message/messages/

and this lets you get the data in HTML format - basically, go to the above links you want to save and then save that page as HTML or copy and paste the text to a local document / note taking app.


The fitbit app logs your steps, sleep and other health informtion and if you use a fitbit you can go to https://www.fitbit.com/ and click the top right Cog to get to the menu and choose "Settings".
Click "Data Export" on the left hand side (https://www.fitbit.com/export/user/data ) and then click the big button "Request my Data"

Responsive image

After a while you will get an email saying where to download the data


YouTube is owned by Google, so you get all this data when you do a Google export. If you just want to see the things you've watched and commented on in YouTube, you can go to youtube home and click on the top Left hamburger menu and choose "History" under the Library section

Responsive image

Linked In

If you use LinkedIn it probably contains your recent work history, qualifications and professional connections.
Go to the LinkedIn home > Drop down menu "Me" > "Settings & Privacy"

Responsive image

Then you scroll down the page and under the section "How LinkedIn uses your data" click on the "Download your data" link https://www.linkedin.com/psettings/member-data

Apply the same methods to download from other websites

There are too many websites to list individually, but you should get the idea now. Basically there are 3 steps
1. Login to the website
2. Look for the export link (often under privacy or settings)
3. Choose what you want to download, and begin the process
4. Wait for the email saying your download is ready (on your own personal computer) and download the zip files there.

What do I do with the data now?

You need to unzip it to a folder first, then you'll be able to look at the data.

Next steps coming up will be
- formatting your contacts for importing into another service
- laughing at yourself because of all the wacky things you searched for

Thanks for reading! To be notified about blog posts, add your email address.

If you want to try LifePIM, claim your account here

Return to Blog index

Feb 2021
  • Practical Documentation for Teams of Information workers
  • Feb 2020
  • Steps to build a world with Unreal Engine 4
  • Jul 2019
  • What would it take to play your Avatar on any game?
  • May 2019
  • Where is my data?
  • What do I do if I lose a digital photo or document?
  • February 2019
  • Checklist for building a business website
  • January 2019
  • What software will you trust when you get senile?
  • December 2018
  • What is the point of a Personal knowledge base?
  • November 2018
  • How to Download your personal data from the cloud
  • Take time to relax
  • October 2018
  • How to build Software that lasts for decades
  • Different ways to use folders to store your data
  • Teams - you need ONE person to maintain your data
  • September 2018
  • Setting up LifePIM and importing your Notes
  • Lets talk about data!