When an employee leaves your company, you can archive that user account to securely retain their data and prevent them from accessing Google Workspace services. Archiving a user account changes their state to archived and assigns them an Archived User license.
What happens to an archived user’s account & data?
When you archive a user account, Google safely maintains the user’s Google Workspace services data. If the user has a Google Vault license or a license from an Archived User subscription that contains Vault, then the user's data is protected according to Vault retention rules and holds and you can search and export the data. Learn more
The user’s data (from core services, such as Gmail and Google Drive, and non-core services, such as Classroom) is available to other users in your organization.
- For Enterprise Plus and G Suite Business users, the user’s data stays in the same data region set by the administrator. For details, go to Choose a geographic location for your data.
- Currents data (posts, comments, and likes) is retained, but it may take up to 7 days to appear in the stream. For details, go to Archive a Currents user.
- For Enterprise Plus and Enterprise Standard users, Google Drive data loss prevention (DLP) continues to run on their data. For details, go to Use Workspace DLP to prevent data loss.
If the user has a license to an add-on subscription, such as Vault or Google Voice, the user keeps the license after you archive them. If the user no longer needs the add-on subscription, you can remove the license after archiving the user account. Learn more about removing licenses.
You can archive both active and suspended users. When you archive a user account, their active Google Workspace license becomes available to reassign to another user within 24 hours.
- Can’t sign in to their Google Account, on any system. This includes Google Workspace services, such as Gmail, Google Calendar, and Drive.
- Don’t appear in the Global Address List. In user directory listings, the user appears with the archived status. Go to View the status of a user account.
- Can be deleted or unarchived, but not suspended in the Admin console.
- Display the archived status in user reports, making it easy to monitor, manage, and eventually delete archived users.
- Can’t receive new email and calendar invitations as they are blocked when sent to the archived user’s account.
How unarchiving works
When you unarchive a user account, they return to their previous status and regain access to all their previous data.
After you unarchive a user account, you need to manually assign them a license for Google Workspace.
Before you begin
- Your organization needs an Archived User subscription. To buy an Archived User subscription, contact a Google Sales representative or a Google Cloud partner.
- To archive a user, you need an available Archived User license. If no Archived User licenses are available, an error message appears when you try to archive a user.
- To unarchive a user, you need an available license that matches their Google Workspace edition. If no active license is available, the unarchiving process fails and the user remains archived with their Archived User license.
Archive or unarchive an individual user account
You can archive or unarchive a single user account on the Users page or on that individual user’s page.
- In the Admin console, go to Menu DirectoryUsers.
- In the Users list, find the user. If you need help, go to Find a user account.
- Hover over the user account you want to archive or unarchive and click More optionsArchive user or Unarchive user.
- These options display only if you have an Archived User subscription.
- You can also find these options at the left of the user's account page.
- To confirm, click Archive or Unarchive.
Archive or unarchive users in bulk
You can archive or unarchive users in bulk using a CSV file or the Admin SDK APIs.Use a CSV file
To archive or unarchive multiple users using a CSV file, follow the directions in Add several users at once.
In the downloaded CSV template, in the New Status [Upload Only] column, enter Archived to archive a user, or Active to unarchive a user.