How-To

How to Download a Copy of All Your Facebook Pictures, Videos and Data

If you’ve been using Facebook regularly for years, don’t forget to back it up. You’ll be surprised how much data you have on the social network and might want to delete.

If you are a heavy Facebook user, the number of photos, videos, and other data you’ve uploaded to the site can be massive. So from time to time, you should download a full copy of all photos and other data uploaded to your account.

And you’ll definitely want to get a full backup if you want to deactivate your account and just use FB Messenger. Or get a full backup of your data if you’re going to permanently delete your account.

The process of downloading your data isn’t complicated, you just need to know where to look in settings. Here’s what you need to do to get a full backup of your photos, videos, and other data from Facebook.

Note: This article has been updated to reflect the changes in the Facebook user interface and downloading process.

Request a Copy of All Your Facebook Data

To get started, head to Facebook in a browser on your desktop and log into your account if you aren’t already. Then, click the Account (down arrow) button in the upper-right corner and click Settings & Privacy.

Next, click on Settings from the menu.

facebook settings menu

On the next page, click Your Facebook Information from the left panel.

your facebook information

Now from the menu on the right, click the View link next to the “Download Your Information” category.

download your facebook info

On the following page, you have some options. Facebook allows you to request a copy of all your data, data from a specific date range, HTML or JSON format, and media quality.

Note: Select HTML for an easy-to-view and review archive of your data. It’s the option that’s best for most users. Select the JSON format if you want to import your data to another app or service.

You can also scroll down the “Your Information” list and check what you do or don’t want to download. By default, everything is selected such as Groups, Likes and Reactions, Photos and Videos, Messages, and more.

Since we want a full copy of everything, just keep all of the default settings and click the Create File button.

request copy facebook data

Next, you will see a message that a copy of your data is being created. Facebook will notify you when the file is ready to be downloaded. The amount of time it takes will vary depending on the amount of data you requested. If you want to stop the process you can click the “cancel this process” link in the message.

Copy being created

While your file is being prepared for download, you can continue using Facebook. Just keep in mind that some of your data uploaded after the request won’t be contained in the backup.

Download Your Facebook Data File

Once the copy of all your requested Facebook data is ready to be downloaded you’ll get a notification message. Click the notification.

Notification

You’ll be brought to the following page where you can download your data file. You can see when the copy was requested, the file format (in this case HTML), and the media quality. Note that you only have a few days to download it before it expires. Click the Download button.

Download Facebook Data File

Before you can download the file you will need to re-enter your account password and click Submit.

Type in facebook password

Now go to the folder where your file was downloaded and extract everything from the Zip file. Everything in your archive is pretty straightforward. But for more details on everything that’s indexed to your archive check out this Facebook support page.

Extract Facebook Data Zip

Once you extract the zip file you can start looking through all of your Facebook data. There’s a lot to comb through if since we selected to include everything. Just open a folder and double-click the file you want to view.

facebook folders

Some folders will contain copies of the actual files you uploaded like in the “Mobile Uploads” folder, for example.

photos folder facebook

Others will have HTML files that will open in your default browser and you can view them while offline. For example, here I opened my “Posts and Comments” HTML file in Microsoft Edge. You can view your archived pages just like you would on the website.

facebook comments html

Summing Up

That’s all there is to it. Again, there is a ton of content to browse through if you want. It can be fun to go back in time and see what you were chatting about or view photos and videos you uploaded back in the day. You might also be a bit creeped out about how much data Facebook keeps on you. Whatever the case, it’s important to know how to download a full copy of your data.

For more on getting archived copies of data from other social media services check out how to download your Twitter history. Or maybe you want to do the same thing with Google. Check out how to use Google Takeout.

28 Comments

28 Comments

  1. Denis Brown

    I cannot find this on the UK version of Facebook. Is it only available in the US?

  2. Morten

    Thanks, I’ve looked fort this. Want to save my data before everyone goes for G+

  3. Crystal

    after it finishes downloading and it is on my computer it wont open and i know its not my computer as i just bought this morning

    • Monique

      Were you ever able to open the file???
      I can’t get my old photos to open…

  4. Adam

    Excellent. Finally got all my photos down loaded to backup HD. I’m no computer expert. Your instructions was very easy to follow.
    WELL DONE SIR
    Thank you

  5. addeht

    the instruction are very easy to do..Thank you.

  6. jacquiline

    thanks a lot

  7. dfghzz

    what if this shit does not work it says you can download but there is NOTHING in the link

    • sara

      I’m having the same issue. I got an email from fb saying that it’s ready to download but when I downloaded and tried to open, there was nothing in the archive ….. HELP!

  8. ANon

    Thank you!

  9. tdog

    Thx

  10. jen

    thank you!

  11. CC

    Worked like charm. Downloaded all my pics. NOW, deleting all my info from FB!

  12. Hershie

    Worked beautifully! Thank you –

  13. Mia Johnston

    It does not work, I got an email saying that they could not download a copy oft facebook. Why?

  14. mike

    i find that http://fbdld.com is really easy way to download full facebook albums you want to backup and download to your computer. it enables you to download entire albums in bulk as a zip file!
    nice thing about it is that you dont need to install anything on your computer!

  15. Mister Frustrated

    It really stinks that the author chooses to write these supposed “it’s so easy” article, but ignores his readers when they leave comments asking him to respond..I just stumbled across this blog quite on accident and think Austin’s disrespect towards his readers is a disgrace to the rest of us that blog.

    Shame on you little man..

    • John

      Way more it worked for maybe u cud be at fault?

  16. carmen

    Thank you!

  17. Rajshree

    thankss alot i looked for for a downloader to download the pic whole day
    fool me hahah well thankyou(Y)

  18. lynn

    can anyone tell me if I can download my facebook I have saved to another account or a new account

    • twotwentyeight

      I have the same question… where’s the answer

  19. Flavia Gray

    Perfect! I thought I would have to do the last 6 years photos manually :-) Thanks x

  20. Leyla

    Just wondering. If I did this and then deleted my facebook would it not work anymore or would I still hae it saved on my computer even if it’s been deleted online?

    • Desiree

      Leyla, did you ever figure this if you can keep the pictures if you delete your facebook?

  21. Thomas Taylor

    Um, not only is the General Account Settings layout completely different on FB vs. the pictures in your article. There is no link to download everything. What am I missing?

  22. Elena Omelyanova

    Full backup does not include text to album and texts to photos in an album. At least, I did not find such an option.

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