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Vault search FAQ

Gmail and chat

If a message isn't delivered in Gmail (for example, blocked spam messages), will Vault store it?

No. The message must be delivered to the mailbox for it to be archived in Vault.

Do Google Hangouts work with Vault?

Yes, Vault fully supports Hangouts chats that take place after April 8, 2015. You can retain, hold, search, and export chats that occur within Hangouts with history turned on.

For Hangouts that occurred before this date:

  • only on-the-record chats can be searched, exported, and placed on hold
  • retention policies are not properly applied to Hangouts messages
Can administrators require chats to be "on the record" so that they are retained with Vault?
  • Google Hangouts: Administrators can control whether history is on or off. Vault can retain all Hangouts chats that take place after April 8, 2015 with history on.
  • Google Talk: Administrators can only require chats to be "off the record" and can disable chat history.
What happens to a Vault user that has exceeded the G Suite storage limit?

There is no impact to Vault when when this happens. However, a user who has exceeded the storage limit can no longer send or receive any new mail and may experience general account degradation.

Can I restore messages retained in Vault back to Gmail?

For data that was deleted fewer than 25 days ago, we recommend that you use the Google admin console to restore a user’s Google Drive or Gmail data.

For email that was deleted more than 25 days ago and is covered by a hold or a retention policy, you can use Vault to restore Gmail messages.

How can I exclude automatically saved and discarded drafts in a Vault search?

Add the following operator to your search terms-(label:^deleted AND label:drafts)

Can I perform a Vault search within a specific organizational unit?

Yes. When performing a search within a matter, select Organization, and then select the organizational unit you want to search. Accounts cannot be included in an organizational unit-based search, but you can still (optionally) specify a date range and search terms.

How can I exclude messages that have been quarantined?

Add the following operator to your search terms-label:^admin_quarantine.

Learn more about admin quarantine.

Files in Google Drive

Which part of files in Drive are searchable?

You can search for words and phrases that occur in file names and in the contents of files. Vault indexes the first 100 pages of text files and the first 10 pages of text in image PDFs.

You can search text within the following file types:

Note: G Suite for Government customers cannot search the contents of files. However, they can search file names and other file properties.

You can use search operators to find just files you're looking for.

What file types can I preview with Vault for Drive?

You can preview these files:

  • Google files such as Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drawings
  • User-uploaded files such as .docx, .pdf, and .xslx
Can I search within the revision history of a document?

No. Currently you can search only the most recent version of a file. However, you can enter a version date during search to view and export Google files as they existed on that date. Versioning is not supported in non-Google files like PDF and .docx.

A file's version history doesn't include changes to:

  • the title
  • who it was shared with
  • comments
Can Vault search Google Drive for my entire domain?

Vault can search up to 5,000 users (individual users or members of organizational units).

How does Vault handle files that are shared with but not owned by a user?

Vault can search, export, retain, and hold all files that are in a user’s Drive, which can include unopened files, as well as Team Drive files if they were shared specifically with that user. Files owned by a user outside of your domain, even if shared with a user in your domain, are not subject to your organization’s holds and retention rules.

Team Drive files are owned by the associated team and are shared with all team members. As such, Vault can also search, export, retain, and hold files in Team Drives associated with a user.

How long does it take for retention rules to take affect?

The implementation of retention rules and holds, as well as the expiration of files in Drive, can be subject to delays:

  • When you create or update a retention rule or hold, it can take up to three hours for the rule to take effect and protect the relevant files. Files deleted by users during this period are not retained and cannot be retrieved.
  • When a retention coverage period expires or a hold is removed, it can take up to 15 days for affected files to be removed from Drive.
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