The Case: Gmail Failed to Download Attachments?


Failed to download attachments in Gmail on Android

I can't download attachments in my primary Gmail account (the same one in use for Android) using the Gmail app. When I tap the download icon, either nothing happens or I get a message saying that the attachment failed to download and to try again later.

However, downloading attachments works fine on two other Gmail accounts (technically work Gsuite accounts) within the same app. It's only my primary personal account that fails to download. I've already tried clearing the Gmail app's cache and data to no avail. I'm using a Galaxy Tab S6 running Android 11 on OneUI 3.1. Any help would be appreciated. 

- Question from

Failed to Download Gmail Attachment on Android
Failed to Download Gmail Attachment on Android

You’re in the right place if you are stuck in the error message “Failed to download the attachment. Please try again.” right now on your OnePlus, Samsung, or your computer, the reasons why Gmail fails to download attachments will be described and provides the effective solutions for you.

Why is my Gmail failing to download attachments?

There can be several reasons why your Gmail is failing to download attachments. Here are some common issues and troubleshooting steps you can try:

  • Browser Issues: Sometimes, browser extensions or settings can interfere with attachment downloads. Try disabling any browser extensions or plugins that might be causing conflicts. You can also try accessing Gmail in a different browser to see if the issue persists.
  • Internet Connection: A slow or unstable internet connection can cause problems while downloading attachments. Ensure that you have a stable internet connection and try again.
  • Antivirus or Firewall Settings: Your antivirus or firewall software may have settings that block or interfere with attachment downloads. Temporarily disable these security measures or adjust their settings to allow Gmail to download attachments.
  • Account Storage Limit: If your Gmail account has reached its storage limit, you may encounter issues downloading attachments. Ensure that you have enough available storage space and consider deleting unnecessary emails or files to free up space Gmail storage space.
  • Temporary Server Issues: Occasionally, Gmail servers may experience temporary issues or maintenance, leading to attachment download failures. In such cases, the problem is usually resolved automatically after a short period. Wait for some time and try downloading the attachment again.

After knowing the reasons why Gmail failed to download attachments, you can try the following solutions to fix it. We will divide the content into two parts, one is for the problem on your Android phone, another part is for you can't download attachments on your computer.

Gmail Failed to Download Attachments on Android | 4 Ways

Way 1. Delete Your Gmail account from Gmail App and Add it Again

According to the user feedback, remove your Gmail account and add it again, it really works for the problem “Failed to download attachment in Gmail on Android”. Let’s get started to fix it:

1. Please go to your phone’s Settings.

2. Choose Accounts and backup > Manage accounts > Tap the Gmail account, and choose Remove account.

Remove Gmail Account from Phone
Remove Gmail Account from Phone

3. Then head to your Gmail app, and sign in with your Gmail account to add it again to your Phone.

4. Now, try to download Gmail attachments again, and it should be solved.

Way 2. Create a Guest Account and Download Again

1. On your Phone go to Settings > Users and Accounts > Multiple Users > Guest.

2. Create/Open Guest Account.

3. In your guest account open Gmail and add any of your email addresses.

4. Downalod any attachment from Gmail, it should work.

5. Go back to your main account (same as step 1) to download your Gmail attachments.

Way 3. Allow Background Data Usage

Sometimes, when attempting to download email attachments using mobile data, the presence of an active data-saving mode on your phone can potentially stop Gmail's ability to utilize mobile data in the background. Here is how to enable Background Data Usage:

1. Tap Settings on your phone.

2. And choose Apps > See all apps > Gmail > Mobile data and Wi-Fi.

3. Turn on Background data and Unrestricted data usage.

Turn On Background Data And Unrestricted Data Usage
Turn On Background Data And Unrestricted Data Usage

4. Download Gmail attachments on your Android phone, and it should work.

Way 4. Clear Gmail Cache

1. Please go to Settings on your phone.

2. Choose Apps & notifications > Gmail > Storage & Cache.

3. Hit Clear cache, and click OK.

Clear Gmail Cache
Clear Gmail Cache

4. Then try to download Gmail attachments again.

The Gmail attachment download failed issue should be fixed.

Failed to Download the Attachment in Gmail on Computer | 6 Ways

Way 1. Check Internet Connection

If your Internet connection is poor or unstable, you will get the error “Failed to download the attachment. Please try again.”, it’s strongly recommended to connect a wired Internet connection. And then try to download Gmail attachments again.

Way 2. Update your Browser

Ensure your browser is up to date to resolve issues with Gmail attachments not downloading. Start by updating your browser to the latest version. Here's how you can update popular browsers:

Here we take Google Chrome for example to update Chrome:

1. Click on the three-dot menu icon.

2. Go to "Help" and select "About Google Chrome."

Update Chrome
Update Chrome

If updates are available, Chrome will begin installing them automatically. Then try again to download your Gmail attachments.

Way 3. Disable All Gmail Advanced Settings

To troubleshoot failed to download attachment in Gmail, you can check and disable Gmail Lab (now, Advanced) settings. Here's how you can do it:

1. Open your browser and log in to Gmail.

2. Click on the gear icon in the upper right corner and select "See all settings".

3. Switch to the "Advanced" tab.

4. Disable all the settings listed under the advanced settings.

Disable All Gmail Advanced Settings
Disable All Gmail Advanced Settings

5. Finally, click on the "Save changes" button to apply the modifications.

Disabling Gmail Lab (advanced) settings can help identify if any of these experimental features are causing problems with downloading attachments in Gmail. By disabling them, you can revert to the default settings and potentially resolve the issue.

Note that Gmail Lab settings are experimental and may not be fully optimized or compatible with all attachments. Disabling them does not affect the core functionality of Gmail and can help in troubleshooting attachment download problems.

Way 4. Temporarily Disable Firewall & Antivirus

To troubleshoot the failed-to-download attachment issues in Gmail, consider temporarily disabling your antivirus and firewall software. Here's how you can do it:

Disable Windows Defender Firewall

1. Please type "Windows Defender" in the Windows search box, and hit Enter.

2. Click on "Turn Windows Defender Firewall on or off" in the left pane.

3. In the new window, select the radio button next to "Turn Off Windows Defender Firewall (not recommended)" for both private and public network settings.

Disable Firewall
Disable Firewall

4. Click OK to apply the changes.

Disable Third-Party Antivirus

1. Locate the antivirus program icon in the System Tray (usually located at the bottom-right corner of the screen).

2. Right-click on the antivirus icon and Disable it.

By temporarily disabling these security measures, you can determine if they are causing any interference with attachment downloads in Gmail. Remember to re-enable them after troubleshooting.

Please note that it's crucial to have an updated and reliable antivirus solution to protect your system from threats. Disabling it temporarily should only be done for troubleshooting purposes.

Way 5. Upgrade your Gmail Account

If your Gmail storage space is full or hit the Google Drive storage limit, it will prevent you from downloading attachments from Gmail so that you will get the error “Failed to download the attachment. Please try again.”.

First of all, you have to check your Gmail storage space, and then upgrade your Gmail account if it's full:

1. Click the Gmail storage icon at the bottom left of the Gmail website.

2. It shows you the storage space used in Google storage, click Get More Storage to upgrade.

Get More Storage for Gmail
Get More Storage for Gmail

3. After upgrading, download Gmail attachments to check if the problem persists.

Way 6. Clear Browser Cache and Cookies

To resolve issues with Gmail attachments not downloading, clearing your browser's cache and cookies can help. Follow these steps to clear cache and cookies for Google Chrome:

1. Launch Google Chrome and press Ctrl+Shift+Delete to open the "Clear browsing data" panel.

2. Select "All time" in the Time range menu.

3. Check the boxes for "Cookies and other site data", "Cached images and files", and other options you’d like to delete.

Advanced Settings for Clearing Browsing Data
Advanced Settings for Clearing Browsing Data

4. Finally, click the "Clear data" button at the bottom.

5. Now, try to download Gmail attachments right now to check if the problem is solved or not.

Clearing cache and cookies helps eliminate any corrupted data that may be affecting the performance of your browser or app, including attachment downloads in Gmail.

Download Gmail Attachments on Computer in An Easy Way

If you still have problems downloading Gmail attachments after trying the above solutions, try the professional cloud file manager - MultCloud, which helps you to download your attachments and documents from Gmail easier. No more wasting time searching for specific emails or struggling with cumbersome manual downloads.

MultCloud empowers you to download Gmail emails and attachments to a computer or other clouds you currently using, which provides a flexible way for you to manage your Gmail attachments.


The step-by-step guide to downloading Gmail attachments to your computer via MultCloud:

Step 1. Visit the MultCloud website and create an account.

Step 2. After signing in, click on "Add Email" and select "Gmail", then follow the guide to add.

Add Gmail
Add Gmail

Step 3. Navigate to the folder you’d prefer, and select the emails that contain your Gmail attachments.

Step 4. Choose Download from the top menu.

Download Emails from Gmail
Download Emails from Gmail

Step 5. Tick Save Attachments, and hit OK.

Download Settings
Download Settings

Notes: You have up to 50 email-to-PDF conversions if you’re a free user, please upgrade to unlock the unlimited numbers of conversions if you have a large number of Gmail emails and attachments to download.

Now, the problem like failed to download PDF attachments in Gmail has been solved. Besides, you’re able to migrate your Gmail account to another, and move Gmail to OneDrive, or other clouds directly if you’re interested.

  • Smart Share: Share cloud files via public, private, or source mode.
  • One-key Move: Quick data transfer, sync, and backup among clouds.
  • Email Archive: Protect emails to other clouds or local disks.
  • Remote upload: Effectively save web files to clouds via URL.
  • Safe: Full-time 256-bit AES and OAuth authorization protections.
  • Easy: Access and manage all clouds in one place with one login.
  • Extensive: 30+ clouds and on-premise services are supported.

The End

Now Gmail failed to download attachment in Android or on the computer have been solved by yourself. Just find the above solutions separately for Android or computer to fix. Or you have another easy way to download Gmail emails with all attachments to a hard drive without downloading them one by one.

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