About Google Docs

Google has many pseudo files, such as Google Docs, that are really just data stored in a database, and then rendered as files in the Google Drive UI.  The Google Drive adapter will automatically export and transfer docx, xlsx, pptx, svg and txt files from Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Draw  and Sites “files” respectively.  Other Google pseudo files, such as maps and forms, will not be exported and will not be transferred. These items will be reported as filtered on the transfer report.

Google Drive supports files and folders with duplicate names. The first of these will be transferred over to the target with its original name (e.g., “duplicate.txt”). Subsequent duplicates will be transferred with the file/folder name plus an appended id (e.g., “duplicate (ABC123).txt”).

Google docs, sheets, slides and draw files may be transferred directly from one Google account to another for account mapping jobs.  When you build the job in the APM wizard, do the following to maintain Google docs in their native state:

  1. Add the source Google Drive system.
  2. Add the target Google Drive system.  As soon as you add the Google Drive Target system, there will be an Import to Google Docs Types checkbox on the Target System screen.  This box will be deselected by default.  Leave this box deselected if you want to migrate Google docs as Google docs, but also migrate .docx files as .docx files. Selecting this checkbox will also convert .docx files on the source to Google docs on the target.
  3. If you go back to the Source System screen and you will now see an Export Google Documents checkbox on this screen as well.  That should also be deselected; Google docs will remain Google docs and will not be exported.
  4. Continue to configure your migration as usual.

CFP uses Google’s export tool to export these Google docs, and will occasionally encounter files that it cannot export.  Sites are particularly prone to export issues such as Internal Server error, Access is denied, and various other permission related errors.  Files that encounter export errors will be reported as such to the transfer report.

If you wish to transfer Google docs from a source, the users should be active, and not suspended.  Suspending users can result in permission errors on export, resulting in failure to transfer the files.

About Versioning in Google Docs

Google docs can have versions as true files do.  Unlike true files, Google doc versions are not stored as separate files; they are stored and accessed within the document itself.  CFP will list Google doc versions in the analysis report, and will transfer those versions if the Google doc is exported to Office on the target and Sync File Versions is selected for the job.  Google doc versions will not be transferred where the target format is native Google doc.  If a Google doc is updated on the source after the initial transfer, a resync run will transfer the updated content.  In the case where the target format is Google docs, the updated content will again be the sole version saved.

Migrating Office Files to GDrive

If you have a Google Drive target for your job, you can also import Office and .svg files to their analogous Google doc types. Simply select the “Import to Google Docs types” checkbox under Advanced Options (standard job)/Advanced Fields (APM job).

  • Legacy .doc, .xls and .ppt formats will be converted to Google docs where the Google exporter can do so.
  • When files are imported into a Google target as Google docs, the file extensions will be stripped from the filenames. For example, the file “myDoc.docx” on the source will be transformed to “myDoc” on the target. The one exception is that .xlsm files will retain the extension, but will be exported.
  • CFP uses the exporting/importing tools provided by Google. Occasionally there are limitations or errors in the tool that prevent the file from importing, in which case CFP will transfer the file in its native source state to the target, with the extension retained. In the rare instances where the file cannot be transferred at all, it will be reported as a write error on the transfer report with explanatory information.
  • .xlsb and .csv files are not imported and are transferred in their native state.
  • comments and suggested edits are transferred.

Migrating Native Google Doc Files to Box or from Egnyte or Dropbox

CFP supports migrating native Google docs to Box and also supports migrating Google docs from Egnyte to Google, with final target output as either native Google docs or Office files.  Contact support@cloudfastpath.com for details.

CFP can also migrate Google docs from Dropbox and will export them as Office files.


  1. If you are migrating native Google docs to Box and want to preserve them in their native state, do not select Export Google Documents on the source.  Consult Box if you want to preserve native Google docs as this does require some advance preparation.  If you want to migrate native Google docs to Box as Office (docx|xlsx|pptx) files, select Export Google Documents.
  2. Do not select the Import to Google Docs types/Export Google Documents checkboxes unless you are running a Google to Google migration. Only select the Retrieve Google Docs Sizes option if you have been instructed to do so by Tervela support.
  3. Retrieve Google Docs Sizes will significantly slow down the job if selected.  Retrieve Google Docs Sizes will not return a file size for many files that have errors such as unsupported export (e.g., Google maps) or permissions issues.  If we cannot export the file for any reason, we cannot report the target file size.
  4. The Google exporting tool has a max exported file size limit of approximately 10MB. Files that are bigger than this will generate write errors on the transfer report. You may break those Google docs up into multiple files to transfer them.
    There is some variation in the file size limit that Google incurs; docs may have lower limits than other file types.  If you generate an error downloading a Google doc from the web ui, it will also generate an error downloading via CFP.  For files that must be split up to transfer, this is a useful test to ensure that the divided files are all small enough to transfer.
  5. If the Advanced Option “Include Shared Folders Owned by Others” is selected, CFP will transfer shared items that have been explicitly mounted on the user’s /My Drive.” CFP does not ever migrate the contents of “/Shared with Me,” even if Include Shared is selected, but “/Shared with Me” files will transfer in most cases if the actual owner accounts of those “Shared with Me” files are selected. If you are running an Account Mapping job with Permissions, those files will additionally be re-shared on the target platform.
  6. Comments in Google docs will be exported with the original source usernames.
  7. CFP only transfers items from drive.google.com. Items from other URLs, such as Google Photos (photos.google.com) are not supported.
Updated on September 8, 2021

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