Do Online Backup Services Limit File Formats or Sizes?

Are Some Sorts of Files Not Allowed to Be Backed Up?

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Do some online backup services not let you backup certain kinds of files? What about really big individual files? Shouldn't you be able to backup anything you want, especially if you've paid for an unlimited online backup plan?

The following question is one of many you'll find in my Online Backup FAQ:

"Are there any sorts of limits as to what sizes or types of files that I can backup, assuming I don't go over the maximum I'm paying for?"

No, most cloud backup services do not place limits on individual file sizes so long, as you mentioned, you stay under the maximum amount of backup space you're allowed to take up in your plan.

Also, no, you won't usually find restrictions on the file types you want to backup. In other words, no, it's not common to find an online backup service that will let you upload music and video files, but won't let you upload a virtual machine or ripped Blu-ray disc.

It is, however, very common to find certain types and sizes of files excluded by default in the online backup service's software. These exclusions are usually there to help prevent massive initial uploads due to very large files, and common but generally useless file types like temporary files. You can usually remove those exclusions if you wish.

Important: If the ability to backup very large or certain types of files is an important factor in your choice of an online backup service, please be aware of the service's fair use policy. Check the Fair Use or Acceptable Use section on their website for information about what may or may not be contractually allowed.

Here are some other online backup concerns that I often get asked about:

Here are more questions I answer as part of my Online Backup FAQ: