WhatsApp Chat Backup: stuck during upload

Did you get a notification within WhatsApp on your iPhone that the Chat Backup function cannot complete? Ther are many possible issue that cause the backup to iCloud of your WhatsApp messages to fail. You already may have tried to force close the app, restart your device.. but nothing seems to help. In this blogpost, I will give some possible solutions on how to succesfully backup your chat history safely again in the cloud.

Error message failed backup

Failed backup error message:

Can’t complete backup. Make sure your phone has an Internet connection and that you have enough free space in iCloud.

WhatsApp Chat Backup yellow error message on top of the screen

Your backup may be stuck at the start (0 bytes), or may be stuck in the middle of the upload process.

Chat Backup on WhatsApp is stuck and fails with an error message.

Luckily there are quite some options to unblock this situation so that you can continue to safely backup your conversation on Apple’s iCloud servers.

Possible solutions

Check you meet the requirements

In order for WhatsApp to backup your data to the iCloud servers, there are a number of prerequisites that need to be met first.

Internet connection

Make sure you have an active Wi-Fi connection. Even if the Wi-Fi icon is shown on your screen, it doesn’t mean you actually have an internet connection that works. So open Safari (or any other browser) and go to google.com to see if it correctly loads.

You can reset your network settings:

  • Go to Settings on your iPhone
  • Select General
  • Scroll down to Reset
  • Now in the menu option, choose Reset Network Settings and confirm

Apple System Status

The issue you are facing with WhatsApp may be a temporary issue that is not caused by you, but instead the issue may be situated at Apple’s side. It’s good to have a quick look at the System Status page on the Apple website. The iCloud service may be disrupted or degraded. If this is the case, you may try to upload your WhatsApp message on a later time when these issues are solved.

Soft reset your iPhone

The very first option you should try is to soft reset your iPhone. For some reason, some temporary files may block your backup. A soft reset of your smartphone is totally harmless and only requires a simple button combination.

The button combination you need to do depend on your iPhone generation.

Soft reset an iPhone X, XS, XR, 11, 11 Pro and later

The newest models of iPhone no longer have a home button that you can press to soft reset your Apple device. Instead, do the follow actions to initiate the reset:

  • Press the volume up button and keep it pressed in
  • Then, while continuously pressing the volume up button, press the sleep/wake button on the other side of your iPhone
  • Keep these two buttons pressed in until you see the ‘power off’-slider

You succesfully soft-rebooted your iPhone. See if the issue persists.

Soft reset an iPhone with a home button (e.g. iPhone 6(s), 7(S), 8)

If you have a somewhat older iPhone model with a home button on the bottom, soft resetting your device is slightly easier:

  • Press the home buton and at the same time press the wake/sleep button
  • Hold these buttons until you see the Apple logo appear

You succesfully soft-rebooted your iPhone. See if the issue persists.

Delete your WhatsApp backup from iCloud

For some reason, your Whatsapp backup may be corrupted. In any case, it is worth trying to manually remove the WhatsApp data from iCloud.

  • Go to Settings
  • Click on your name on top of the screen (which says: Apple ID, iCloud, iTunes & App Store)
  • Select iCloud, then Manage storage
  • You now see all the data in your iCloud storage. Select WhatsApp Messenger.
  • Click Delete Data

Now try again to go into WhatsApp settings and do the chat backup.

Verify your storage limits of iCloud strorage

By default, every Apple user receives 5GB free storage from Apple with iCloud. That may sound like a lot, but when you are a heavy user or have multiple devices, this storage limitation may not be enough for your needs. If your WhatsApp backup fails on your iOS devie, it may be due to the fact that you are exceeding your 5GB free storage.

So let’s verify you indeed have enough storage space available.

  • Go to your Apple ID on your iPhone
  • Select iCloud

On top of iCloud screen, you will see how much space is currently taken up by your data (this can include: Photos, Contacts, documents on iCloud Drive, …).

You should compare the free space with the total WhatsApp backup size. If the WhatsApp size exceeds the free space, that may be the reason why your backup is blocked.

Example: you are using 3,8 GB out of your 5 GB on iCloud. Your WhatsApp ‘Total Size’ is 1,52 GB. Your total iCloud backup size would then 5,32GB: this exceeds your maximum. If this is the case you have two options: either purchase more storage from Apple, or disable some apps from backing up on iCloud.

What solution worked for you? Or are you still stuck? Share the knowldge it in the comments below.

 

Author Bio

Thank you for your interest in my blog! On this miniblog, I write mostly short (technical) blog posts that might interest other people. Read more about me or feel free to contact me.

 

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